According to the World Health Organization, Indonesia has one of the highest maternal and infant mortality rates in SouthEast Asia. However, a more in-depth study conducted in 1987, Maternal Mortality in Bali, Indonesia done by Dr. Inne Susante, Dr. I.B. Asawa and Judith A. Fortney Ph.D. (in cooperation with School of Medicine, Udayana University, Denpasar Bali, National Family Planning Coordinating Board, Family Healthy International, NC, USA), found that the actual maternal mortality ratio was twice as high as the WHO reported rate (at 718 maternal deaths per 100, 000 live births). The study found that postpartum hemorrhage was the leading cause of maternal death, accounting for 49% of the maternal deaths. Hemorrhage is largely due to malnutrition. The economic conditions currently present in Bali increase the risk of pregnant women eating less nutritious food, and getting fewer meals per day.
Families under financial strain are less likely to seek prenatal care and risk assessment for their pregnant members. Doctors and midwives are finding women of compromised health presenting themselves in labor, having had little or no prenatal care, poorly nourished and at greater risk for complications during delivery, for both mother and baby. Our organization sees patients and care providers daily and perceives an urgent need for educational and birth services to address the problem of increased maternal and infant risks due to the economic and health status in both Bali and Aceh.
Bumi Sehat runs four different types of programs to ensure that continuity of health and wellness care is available for our community:
- Gentle Birthing Services
- General Health Services
- Capacity Building
- Community Outreach
All of Bumi Sehat programs are designed in the context of:
Given the economic realities of our patients, we provide all in-house services regardless of ability to pay and, in extraordinary cases, will also pay for a patient’s care at an outside facility if they cannot afford to do so.
- The economy of Bali, largely dependent on tourism, has spiraled downward since the two Bali bombings and will continue to decline as a result of the global economic crisis. In Aceh, the Tsunami destroyed all infrastructure, leaving the survivors jobless and homeless. Lack of resources affects health status in addition to precluding access to services at the public and private facilities.
- Poor maternal nutrition. Newer high-yield varieties of rice are lacking in essential nutrients which can affect mom and baby alike. Poor nutrition may lead to hemorrhage, threatening the lives of new mothers. Babies malnourished while developing are at risk for low birth weight and a cascade of ill effects. For more information, please refer to the Institute for Food and Development Policy.
- High cesarean section rates. Cesarean sections, which are costly and can lead to infections, are occurring at alarmingly high rates in hospitals in Indonesia.