What you need to know:
- A tweet by Dr Jemimah Kariuki ended up saving thousands of mothers who would have otherwise, not made their way to hospital due to the Covid-19 restrictions.
- The 28-year-old obstetrician-gynaecologist, has won the World Health Organisation Director-General's Award for Global Health 2021.
It started with a tweet, “Hi, any lady in this curfew and Covid time who feels they are unable to reach hospital and they are in labour or have an emergency, kindly reach out and I will do my best to intervene”.
The tweet by Dr Jemimah Kariuki, ended up saving thousands of mothers who would have otherwise, not made their way to hospital due to the Covid-19 restrictions.
Now, the 28-year-old obstetrician-gynaecologist, has won the World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General's Award for Global Health 2021.
WHO recognised Dr Kariuki's contribution to advancing global health by enabling pregnant women to access maternity care during the Covid-19 restriction period.
When news of her recognition reached her, Ms Kariuki took to twitter to thank the UN health agency.
“For the young in the society, this shows that you can make it. And to all pregnant women, the world cares about your life,” she said.
Dr Kariuki, an alumnus of Pangani Girl's High School told the Thomson Reuters during an interview that she deemed it best to intervene following a spike in maternal mortality and complications.
A study by the Johns Hopkins found that disruption to the health systems caused by Covid-19 could result in an additional 1.1 million child deaths and 56,700 maternal deaths in low and middle income countries.
Dr Kariuki, having been determined to stop Kenya from contributing to the projected statistics, initiated the 'Wheels For Life"- a free ambulance service for mothers in labour, especially at night.
The program, which later drew more doctors has helped deliver more than 1,000 babies in Nairobi. Patients were encouraged to call 1196 after which a vehicle would be sent to pick them from their homes.