Hypertensive disorders in pregnancy, experienced by 10 percent of women globally, are major contributors to maternal and newborn mortality, morbidity, and disability. Task shifting essential health services to mitigate insufficient human resources is recommended to strengthen and expand the health workforce and rapidly increase access to quality services. Nigeria’s task-shifting policy recommends that community health extension workers administer a loading dose of magnesium sulphate for severe pre-eclampsia or eclampsia prior to referral to a higher-level facility. This study tested the feasibility and acceptability of community health extension workers at primary health care facilities in Ebonyi state in detecting and managing pregnancy-associated hypertension using alpha methyldopa and magnesium sulphate, where appropriate, and referring for follow-up. Although challenges remain in ensuring that sufficient commodities and supplies are continuously available, this endline report details how ministries of health might use these missed opportunities to detect pre-eclampsia and prevent deterioration by providing anti-hypertensives and magnesium sulphate to stabilize and refer women.
Nwala, Emmanuel, Udochisom Anaba, Pooja Sripad, Salisu Mohammed Ishaku, and Charlotte E. Warren. 2019. "Feasibility and acceptability of community health extension workers to identify and treat hypertension associated with pregnancy: Implementation research report," Ending Eclampsia Endline Report. Washington, DC: Population Council.
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