News @ JSI

JSI’s TSHIP project continues groundbreaking CHX and misoprostol work in Nigeria

December 10, 2013

On December 5, 2013, the governor of Nigeria’s Bauchi State, Isa Yuguda, personally launched the state’s first misoprostol and chlorhexidine (CHX) program. Using its own funds, the Bauchi government ordered 75,000 doses of CHX from a local Nigerian manufacturer. The 75,000 doses will protect the same number of newborns from cord-related infections within the first hour of birth.

Also using its own money, Bauchi State government issued an order to Marie Stopes International Nigeria to deliver 75,000 doses of misoprostol, to prevent postpartum hemorrhage. Through the efforts of the Targeted States High Impact Project (TSHIP), Marie Stopes International is the first to supply misoprostol in three tablet form to Nigeria and is offering the tablets at half the market price.

Bauchi’s procurement of CHX and misoprostol means that up to 2,250 newborn deaths due to cord infection and up to 1,000 maternal deaths due to postpartum hemorrhage will be prevented. Presently, 87% of all births in Bauchi take place at home, so the ability to deliver such lifesaving, low-cost drugs directly to women in their homes is critically important.

To support this momentous move by Bauchi State, the Bauchi State Primary Health Care Development Agency (BaSPHCDA) and TSHIP have accelerated the training of community-based health volunteers, per the government of Nigeria guidelines. The aim is to have 10 community-based health volunteers in each of Bauchi's 323 wards.

TSHIP is also working with the USAID | DELIVER health logistics project (also implemented by JSI) to fast-track the design of a community distribution system for misoprostol and chlorhexidine. In addition, the Federal Ministry of Health has asked TSHIP to contribute its expertise to the national rollout of CHX and misoprostol.

In March 2013, and also with assistance from TSHIP, Sokoto state launched its own CHX and misoprostol program, ordering 56,000 doses of each lifesaving medicine.

TSHIP Chief of Party Nosa Orobaton recently wrote about the Sokoto experience in a Nigerian newspaper, including a call to action urging other states to launch their own CHX and misoprostol programs. Read the article, "Good governance and protecting newborns in Sokoto".