Roman Asrat, Head Nurse, Mekelle Michu clinic: Providing comprehensive maternal health and family planning services in one place puts women at ease
Roman Asrat oversees the Michu (“Comfort” in Amharic) Clinic at the Mekelle University College of Health Sciences’ Ayder Comprehensive Specialized Hospital. In the 18 months since the clinic opened, demand for its services has increased across the Tigray region.
“When mothers come here and get all their services, they feel very happy. Before, they used to get services in different places – the laboratory was in another place, the pharmacy was also in a different place, postnatal was also given in another place. So that wasn’t comfortable for clients.
So they fell happy and free to use all the services, including Antenatal, Postnatal, vaccination, Family Planning, Safe Abortion, laboratory, pharmacy and all services are given here.
When they come after giving birth for postnatal care, they bring their babies for vaccination and they can get counseling about family planning. They were not given that information before.
Almost all take it very well when we give them counseling on how family planning can benefit the child, the mother and the family. They listen to the advice and if they want family planning we give them what they need before they go. Once they start, they usually continue using family planning services.
With everything in one place, keeping the woman at ease, we have found that many more are taking up family planning methods. So the women are satisfied with the service. I mean they feel free to use the service. That makes a big difference.”