234 chapter 10: Pregnancy
• be aware of things we can do. For example, do not assume we cannot have a
vaginal birth. Remember, that just because a woman may have a disability, it
does not mean her womb is damaged. Even if her body and legs are paralyzed,
her womb will still be able to contract and push out a baby.
• organize a group for women with disabilities for advice on eating well,
medicines and health exams during pregnancy.
• make sure we have easy-to-use health care during pregnancy.
Women with disabilities improve health access in Uganda
The Disabled Women’s Network and Resource Organization in Uganda
(DWNRO) works to help health professionals become more aware of the
needs of women with disabilities. Their main concerns are accessibility,
availability, and attitude. For example, when pregnant women with
disabilities are treated poorly by hospital staff, they lose self-confidence
and do not go back for prenatal care. They can have problems with the
pregnancy later, or with the birth, that could have been prevented with
The DWNRO held regional workshops for doctors and midwives on
the lack of access to hospital wards and services, such as postnatal care,
weighing scales, exam tables, and adequate communication with deaf
and blind women. Some
hospitals have made wards
more accessible, and a
deaf women’s group
recently trained a
Sara. I am
ready for you.
I didn’t think
a woman like
her could have
groups of midwives
in sign language.
The DWNRO is
now working to
make women with
disabilities aware of
these services so they
will demand them.
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007