A four-day intensive training workshop for local health practitioners on birth registration has ended in Maryland County, southeast Liberia. It was part of collaborated efforts by the Government of Liberia and its partners to reinstate birth registration across the country.
In an interview with our Maryland County correspondent, the Universal Birth Coordinator at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare Esther G. Thomas said the workshop aimed at training selected health practitioners in the new technology of gathering and entry of birth related data.
“We are here this time around to install online and offline software on the computers of the County Health Team that will enable M&E officers, county registrar, data clerks, and managers print children birth certificates and deliver them to their parents” said Madam Thomas.
She also stated that district health officers were trained on how to collect data and upload them on the software, using Nokia Mobile Phones. The data entry software has already been installed, while 10 mobile phones were distributed to enhance the exercise.
The software, mobile phones and a server currently posted in Monrovia were provided by Crisis Management Initiative (CMI) while UNICEF donated the ledger and birth certificates as part of contributions toward the program.
Commenting on the essence of the exercise, Madam Thomas said birth registration is a human rights issue, adding that it is also significant in authenticating one’s nationality, among other things.
“It’s about the child knowing where they are coming from and who they are…”, she added, and noted the exercise is only targeting children between age zero and 12.
She lauded the Crisis Management Initiative of Finland, UNICEF, among other partners for their support toward the program. The training was held at the JJ Dossen Hospital in Harper.
It brought together 11 health practitioners, including district health officers, data managers, county registrar, data clerks and monitoring and evaluation officers, respectively.