Airtel has joined the campaign against infant mortality in Kenya by donating 25 space heaters to Kiambu county. The room heaters will be placed in newborn units (NBU), labor wards, maternities and delivery rooms to keep newborns warm immediately after birth.
While handing over the heaters, Airtel Kenya CEO Adil El Youssefi said “We at Airtel strive to make a difference in the lives of the people of Kenya. We believe that these space heaters will make a great contribution towards reduction of preventable infant mortality within the county of Kiambu.â€
While accepting the donation, Kiambu County Executive Committee Member for Health Services Dr. Jonah Mwangi said, â€œWe are thankful to Airtel for the donation that will see a reduction in death among infants born within the county. Areas like Limuru, Tigoni and Kikuyu are worst affected by cold weather and will be a priority in when we distribute these space heaters.
According to District Health Information Software (DHIS), 20 newborns die every day in Kenya many of them due to preventable causes. One of the major yet preventable causes of death in newborns is hypothermia and pneumonia which kill within the first week of life.
These deaths can be easily prevented by providing space/ room heaters in newborn units (NBU), labor wards, maternities and delivery rooms to keep newborns warm immediately after birth. The temperature in the womb is 36.6ËšC while room temperature even in the hottest part of Kenya is about 30ËšC. This means babies lose between 6.6ËšC to 24.6ËšC (in places like Limuru where temperatures can go as low as 12ËšC).