Maternal mortality in a Transitional Hospital in Enugu, South East Nigeria
Nigeria has one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the world. The study was to determine the trend of maternal mortality ratio in the hospital as it transits from a General through a Specialist to a Teaching hospital. It was a retrospective review of maternal deaths at Enugu State University Teaching Hospital Parklane, over its 5 year transition period (January 2004 to December 2008). There were 7146 live births and 60 maternal deaths giving an overall maternal mortality ratio (MMR) of 840/100,000 livebirths. The MMR rose from 411 to 1137/100 000 live births as a specialist hospital, with a decline to 625/100 000 as a Teaching hospital. Pre-eclampsia/eclampsia was the leading cause (29.63%) of maternal death. MMR was highest as a Specialist hospital due to limited manpower and inadequate facilities to properly manage the rising number of referred obstetric emergencies. Adequate preparations should be made before upgrading a hospital, to enable it cope with the challenges of managing referred obstetric emergencies (Afr J Reprod Health 2009; 13:67-72).