The tragedy of obstetric fistula is unimaginable. As women have told us, “There’s nothing worse than sleeping on a soiled bed at night.” Fistula persists in Tanzania because of a lack of timely access to high quality maternal healthcare. Too often, a woman can’t access health workers with the skills and tools they need to manage her obstructed labor. Sometimes, the woman reaches the hospital, but the team isn’t equipped to quickly mobilize to provide a safe C-section in order to save her baby, and prevent the traumatic birth injury of obstetric fistula.
In the last decade, CCBRT has trained more than 6,000 healthcare workers in safe maternal and newborn care, and provided surgery and comprehensive treatment to over 7,000 women with obstetric fistula. The comprehensive program focuses on treating the entire woman rather than simply repairing the physical condition alone – improving patients’ health outcomes and economic well-being after surgery.
“They operated on me four times, but I did not recover. That’s when I gave up, I thought I would never recover from fistula. I lost hope because I couldn’t attend mass at church, or participate in any activity with my fellow women. When I reached CCBRT, I was no longer the only one suffering from fistula. I met many other women like me. CCBRT has transformed my life. Right now, I am learning how to be a seamstress at Mabinti,” Angela told us.