Ugandan Women Begin to Embrace Ultrasound Technology
In Uganda, for centuries women have relied on traditional healers for pregnancy care. According to a study recently published in PLOS One, that may be changing due to a radio campaign advertising free prenatal ultrasound scans. The radio ads increased the number of Ugandan women who attended a modern medical clinic by 490%.
Dr. William Cherniak, the lead author of the PLOS One study, is executive director at Bridge to Health, a Toronto group that organizes medical and dental clinics for underserved communities around the world. He concluded that relying on word of mouth for drawing Ugandan women to the clinics advertised was ineffective, given that many women did not believe you can actually “see” an unborn baby. Many Ugandan women have radios in their homes and hearing the message on their radios drew them to the clinics, resulting in nearly six times the amount of women attending the modern medical clinics than before the radio ad began.
In Uganda, about 6,000 women die each year from pregnancy-related complications, and up to one-third of pregnant women have at-home births, noted a research team out of Lawson Health Research Institute and Western University, both in London, Ontario, Canada. The team hopes that the radio ads will continue to draw Ugandan women to the ultrasound technology and demonstrate that modern healthcare is a safe and effective prenatal option.
At Probo, we believe that every expecting woman deserves quality prenatal healthcare. We have donated medical equipment to Uganda in the past, and are thrilled to hear that we are part of a growing movement in the country to embrace modern technology to increase the number of safe births each year.