Makati Mayor Abigail Binay has moved to ensure the health and safety of mother and child through the expanded Baby Makatizen Program, which pushes for regular pre-natal checkups at the city-run Ospital ng Makati and health centers under the supervision of the Makati Health Department.
On Tuesday, Binay awarded Baby Makatizen starter bags to 30 expectant mothers as well as those who have just given birth at OsMak and Barangay Pembo Health Center, who made up the first set of beneficiaries of the expanded program.
Each bag contains a swaddle blanket, washcloth, booties, belly binder, rattle, poly bag, tie side and pajamas, baby cap, mittens, baby wipes, diapers, and reusable baby bag.
“I am encouraging all expectant mothers to diligently go to our health centers and OsMak for regular pre-natal visits. These periodic checkups not only make sure that the baby is healthy, but also monitor for possible complications like diabetes and high blood pressure on the part of the mother,” she said.
“If left unchecked or untreated, these conditions could seriously endanger the life of both mother and child,” said Binay.
The city chief executive said each pregnant woman should undergo at least eight pre-natal checkups. Two during the first trimester; two in the second trimester; and four in the last trimester.
The frequency of checkups increases as the due date or delivery date draws near, she noted, as close monitoring of mother and baby’s progress lessens the likelihood of complications during delivery.
The Baby Makatizen program was first launched in May 2018 to promote the welfare of both mother and child through timely birth registration and adequate prenatal care.
The first recipients of the starter bags were 100 mothers who registered their babies within 30 days after giving birth between January to March this year.
After the launch, the MHD rolled out the program to all barangay health centers, OsMak, and partner-private hospitals and clinics in the city.
The program is open to all expectant mothers who are registered voters of Makati City. They must also have their White Card from OsMak or Pink Card issued by the barangay health centers.
Mothers who enter the program are issued a “Baby Makatizen Pre-natal Passbook” which must be presented each time they go to OsMak or the barangay health center for their pre-natal checkup. The attending doctor, midwife or nurse must sign the pre-natal passbook after the visit.
For mothers who are not considered “high risk” patients, they are required a minimum of eight pre-natal checkups.
High risk patients are required more than eight pre-natal checkups depending on what their doctors require. Incidentally, high risk pregnancies in the barangays are referred to OsMak for expert medical care.
After completing the required number of pre-natal checkups, the Mommy Makatizen must submit the pre-natal passbook to OsMak or the barangay health center to claim her Baby Makatizen starter bag.
Binay said she hoped that with the Baby Makatizen program, more mothers would be encouraged to come for pre-natal checkups.
She added that Makati health centers are also open to give mothers post-natal care as well as vitamin supplements after they have delivered their baby.
At the same time, infants are given free vaccines for common childhood diseases as well as other special vaccines.
The Expanded Immunization Program of Makati under MHD covers several common childhood diseases, namely, measles, polio, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, hepatitis B, tuberculosis, and haemophilus influenza type b (Hib) for newborns and babies up to 48 months.
Upon birth, the BCG (Bacillus-Calmette-Guerin) vaccine, which prevents tuberculosis among newborns up to 12 months, and the Hepa-B vaccine are administered for free in the city-run lying-in centers.