Borno State Health Commissioner Leads Delegation to Tanzania, Eyeing Maternal Mortality Solutions


In a move that signals a transformative approach to healthcare in Nigeria, a delegation from Borno State, led by Health Commissioner Prof. Babagana Zulum, embarked on a pivotal journey to Tanzania. Their mission? To uncover the secrets behind Tanzania’s remarkable success in reducing maternal mortality rates. This visit not only highlights the urgent need for innovative solutions in Nigeria but also showcases Tanzania’s role as a beacon of hope in the global healthcare landscape.

The narrative of Tanzania’s battle against maternal mortality is both inspiring and instructive. With a staggering decrease from 530 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2015/2016 to 104 in 2022, Tanzania’s story is one of resilience, innovation, and unwavering commitment to women’s health.

Central to this success is the M-mama system, an emergency transport service for mothers and newborns in rural areas, addressing one of the critical barriers to accessing timely healthcare. This initiative not only underscores Tanzania’s progress towards Sustainable Development Goal number three but also serves as a model worthy of emulation.

The contrast with Borno State, Nigeria, could not be more pronounced. Despite efforts to improve healthcare, the state continues to grapple with high rates of maternal and child mortality. The challenges are manifold, ranging from inadequate healthcare infrastructure to the lingering effects of conflict. It is within this context that Prof. Zulum’s delegation seeks not just answers but actionable strategies that can be adapted and implemented in Nigeria.

Learning and Collaboration

Warmly welcomed by Tanzania’s Health Permanent Secretary Dr. John Jingu, the visit facilitated a rich exchange of ideas and experiences. Discussions delved into the specifics of the M-mama system, exploring how similar models could be deployed in Nigeria’s unique context. The delegation was also briefed on the investments in healthcare infrastructure, workforce development, and leadership that have been pivotal to Tanzania’s success.

Prof. Zulum, reflecting on the visit, expressed optimism about the potential for Nigeria to learn from Tanzania’s experience. By adopting and adapting strategies that have proven effective in Tanzania, there is hope that Nigeria can make significant strides in reducing maternal and child mortality. This visit, therefore, marks not just a quest for knowledge but a step towards fostering stronger relations and collaboration between Nigeria and Tanzania in the healthcare sector.


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