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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Thought Provoking: Every Women Must See This!

Late last night I couldn't sleep and so while channel surfing I stumbled upon a promgram on PBS, called, "Wide Angle." This is how PBS describes this program:
"WIDE ANGLE was created in 2001 as a response to the lack of in-depth international news coverage in the United States. Six years later, WIDE ANGLE is the only program exclusively dedicated to international current affairs documentaries. For each broadcast, producers and journalists from around the globe report on an event, issue or trend through the eyes of the people who are living it day to day. In its first six seasons, WIDE ANGLE traveled to more than 50 countries to explore the forces that are shaping the world today, presenting global stories on a human scale and offering Americans uncommon and invaluable insight into today’s interconnected world."

The story that was being featured last night was about a midwife in Africa.
"The film Birth of a Surgeon follows Emilia Cumbane, one of the first midwives-in-training. She performs Cesareans and hysterectomies in makeshift operating rooms in rural Mozambique. We follow Cumbane from her home in the Mozambican capital Maputo, into intensive medical classes, through night shifts in the delivery wards, and watch as she fights for recognition of her surgical competence.

With more than half a million women dying in pregnancy or childbirth worldwide, Mozambique’s surgical training programs are being hailed as a model solution in confronting the maternal health crisis facing developing countries. The film captures one woman’s story on the frontlines of improving maternal mortality but it also demonstrates how low-cost, community-based health initiatives are changing the face of public health in Africa."

“I like to be a midwife,” Cumbane says. “I think it’s a good profession - to produce people.”

It was amazing to see women literally dying in child birth, WHAT!?? We live in the 21st Century and women are dying from child birth and complications from pregnancy! It was harrowing to watch these midwives having to sterilize disposable surgical gloves because they lack the funds for medical equipment. They had just removed a baby from the mother in an emergency c-section when the generator gave out and the power went out. Emilia was relieved that the baby had already been removed and she continued on as business as usual! It was mind blowing to hear that these women need permission from their husband to even be treated! Women were requesting to be sterilized and the male doctor intervening on the behalf of her family that wasn't even there. There was a huge concern for the women that would awake to find that in order to save her life a hysterectomy was performed. The dire situations and lack of resources was very humbling! I was in awe of Emilia and her competency, she was saving lives and making a difference in the lives of the women in her country. But she also felt the burden as some mothers and babies didn't survive yet she was amazing! She is the type of women you would want caring for you if you were faced with an emergency!

I have taken so much of what I have for granted and I feel so compelled by this program. I wanted to share this with you and to enlighten you on some of the health crisis that are happening globally. Half a million women in Africa die from complications of pregnancy or child birth, I am in shock that in this the 21st century so many women are dying from child birth! Here is the link if you would like more information or if you would like to watch this film. I highly recommend that all child bearing women watch this.


Rachel said...

Amazing, that is really cool! And speaking of this subject, remember Edda Cox? She is in my triad(26I)now. Well, she had a hysterectomy today (they found a tumor in her ovary). So if you get a chance, come tell her hi. She'll be home on Saturday. Love ya!