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Unable to reach a health centre in the middle of the dusk to dawn curfew, Catherine Twili, from Mutei village in Mbooni, delivered her baby alone at home.

She did not wake up the following day. She was found dead, the newborn next to her.

The baby survived.  

“The woman delivered alone. She had no one to help her. We found her dead on Saturday morning,” said area assistant chief, Mathias Mukithya.

Other deaths have been reported in Kilungu and Kibwezi sub-county hospitals due to late arrival after nights of frustrations and agony.

Christine Muindi, a nurse and a coordinator on maternal health in the county, in an interview, confirmed four deaths, adding that the trend was worrying.

“In 2019, we had only 15 cases. But now in a period of one week, we have four cases. These are cases that have been reported. There might be others,” said Ms Muindi.

In Kakamega, doctors at the Kakamega County General Hospital had to operate on a mother to save her life.

It took the intervention of the chairman of Community Health Volunteers in Kakamega Kevin Mpapale to have the woman rushed to hospital.

“One of our volunteers called me at around 2am saying the woman was about to give birth but had serious complications. I offered them my car to rush her to the hospital because the standby county ambulance was not immediately available,” said Mpapale.

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