May
04

Communications in IMCHA Program

  http://www.idrc.ca/imcha
May
04

Perceptions and experiences related to health and health inequality among rural communities in Jimma Zone, Ethiopia: a rapid qualitative assessment

Background The Safe Motherhood Research Project studies the implementation and scale-up of maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) initiatives in Jimma Zone, Ethiopia. This qualitative rapid assessment study was undertaken to explore community perceptions and experiences related to health, health inequality and other MNCH themes.  Read more ...
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Mar
01

Research Digest, March 2021 – May 2021

The IMCHA research team entitled "Responding to the challenge of adolescent Perinatal Depression" in Nigeria conducted a randomized hybrid trial of psychosocial intervention in primary maternal care. The study explored the effectiveness as well as the utility in routine practice of an intervention package specifically designed for adolescent girls with perinatal depression.The findings suggest that improving parenting skills should be a component of effective interventions for perinatal depression among adolescent mothers

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Feb
04

Engaging communities to achieve equity in maternal and child health

In recent decades, equity has continued to gain importance in public health policy and practice. Equity is a core principle of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its rallying cry is to leave no one behind.

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Feb
02

Does the gap between health workers’ expectations and the realities of implementing a performance-based financing project in Mali create frustration?

Performance-Based Financing (PBF), an innovative health financing initiative, was recently implemented in Mali. PBF aims to improve quality of care by motivating health workers. The purpose of this research was to identify and understand how health workers' expectations related to their experiences of the first cycle of payment of PBF subsidies, an...
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Feb
01

High Impact Interventions on QoC at Health Facilities for MNCH - Literature Review Report - Final Report

The sub-Saharan African (SSA) region has over two thirds of the global burden of maternal deaths and records high infant mortality rates. The region recorded an average of 534 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2017 (WorldBank 2017). Further, one in 13 children died before their fifth birthday in 2019, a statistic that is 15 times higher than that of children born in high-income countries (UNICEF 2020). 

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Dec
04

The emergence of the national medical assistance scheme for the poorest in Mali

Universal health coverage is high up the international agenda. The majority of the West Africa's countries are seeking to define the content of their compulsory, contribution-based medical insurance system. However, very few countries apart from Mali have decided to develop a national policy for poorest population that is not based on contributions...
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Dec
02

Influence of women's empowerment indices on the utilization of skilled maternity care: evidence from rural Nigeria

There is increasing evidence that women with the ability to exercise control over their sexual and reproductive lives have greater access to prompt prevention and treatment of maternal health disorders, resulting in a concomitant reduction in maternal morbidity and mortality. This study assessed the association between indices of women's empowerment and utilization of skilled antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal maternity care in two rural Local Government Areas in Edo State, Nigeria.

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Dec
01

Implementing performance-based financing in peripheral health centres in Mali: what can we learn from it?

Numerous sub-Saharan African countries have experimented with performance-based financing (PBF) with the goal of improving health system performance. To date, few articles have examined the implementation of this type of complex intervention in Francophone West Africa  ​ Implementing performance-based financing in peripheral health centres in ...
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Feb
01

IMCHA Research Digest December 2020 - February 2021

Engagement of men in defining relevant solutions is key to changing harmful social norms and to reaching successful maternal and child health outcomes. The IMCHA research team "Improving Access to Health Services and Quality of Care for Mothers and Children in Tanzania" studied how men can be involved in maternal and child health. 

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Nov
18

Changing gender norms to improve maternal and child health

Maternal death rates in sub-Saharan Africa have dropped almost 40% since 2000, yet the region still has the highest number of maternal deaths, at 533 deaths per 100,000 live births. This figure translated to 200,000 deaths in 2017, UNICEF reports. Poverty, low education levels, violence against women, early marriage, and adolescent pregnancy continue to mark the lives of many women, contributing to their poor health and high mortality. 

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Sep
25

Innovating For Maternal And Child Health In Africa (IMCHA) Summative Evaluation

The research teams, the HPROs and IMCHA management generated a large number of materials that document the IMCHA initiative, some of excellent quality. A considerable number of documents were still in preparation at the time of the evaluation. The IMCHA website, managed by the East Africa HPRO has strong branding, however it is not regularly update...
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Aug
21

Saving Malawi’s most vulnerable newborns with implementation research

Malawi's progress in reducing deaths in children under five years (between 1992 and 2016) is spectacular: a drop of 73% (from 234 deaths per 1,000 live births to 63 deaths). Over the same period, however, deaths during the first month of life held firm at 27 per 1,000 live births ― one of the highest rates in the world. Malawi also has the world's highest rate of premature births (babies born before the 37th week of pregnancy). More than half of these babies will develop respiratory distress syndrome, which increases the risk of serious infections such as neonatal pneumonia and sepsis.

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Aug
21

Strengthening maternal and child health in conflict-affected South Sudan

IDRC-supported research has been underway in South Sudan and northern Uganda since 2015 to improve maternal and child health. In these post-conflict settings, researchers are strengthening local health systems, reducing barriers to access, empowering women, and mobilizing communities to take action on their health needs.  

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Aug
01

Gender Intentional Strategies to Enhance Health Social Enterprises in Africa

The purpose of this toolkit is to guide health social enterprises working with community health workers (CHWs) in Africa to design gender intentional strategies. The intended users of this toolkit are health social enterprise leaders. It is also highly relevant for non- profit organizations, governments, investors, donors, and other stakeholders engaged in the broader field at the intersection of gender equality, social entrepreneurship, and maternal and child health (MCH) in Africa. 
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Nov
01

IMCHA Research Digest June - November 2020

IMCHA research team "Quality improvement for maternal and newborn health at district-level scale in Mtwara Region Tanzania" studied how to improve the quality improvement methodology whereby stakeholders identify problems in their own contexts and create strategies to improve them.

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Mar
17

Implementation research methods: an extension tool in health education and information

Mozambique has high maternal (451.6 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2017) and new-born mortality rates.1 The Alert Community for a Prepared Hospital care continuum, is a project promoted by the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) of UniLúrio (Lúrio University) in Nampula, Northern Mozambique and the University of Saskatchewan (Canada), in partnership with Nampula Provincial Health Directorate, the Marrere Health Centre (MHC) and the Marrere General Hospital (MGH), the Natikiri Administrative Post (NAP) and other non-governmental organizations with health sector activities in Nampula.

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May
01

IMCHA publications March - May 2020

Longer spacing between births improves children's health. It can be promoted by encouraging breastfeeding, engaging men and addressing gender norms that give preference to male children. In Sub-Saharan Africa it is common for children to be born more closely together than recommended. This is well documented to have negative health outcomes for children

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Jan
09

Improving the gender dynamics of social enterprises to support volunteer health workers

"She's like a sister to me," Sulaina Nassaka says about Ruth Nakuya, a community health promoter in Lwengo District, Uganda. Nakuya, who works with the non-governmental organization BRAC International, recently visited the young mother and treated her son for malaria. "I saw women dying because the hospitals are far away and I knew that my village really needed my help," Nakuya says. 

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Dec
12

Making the case for action on gender parity in science

 An equal world for both men and women benefits all. This statement is also true when applied to women's participation in the world of science.   Download PDF File Here
Nov
13

Gender inequity as a barrier to women's access to skilled pregnancy care in rural Nigeria: a qualitative study

Maternal mortality has been an issue of global importance, with continued efforts by the international development community towards its reduction. The provision of high quality maternal healthcare has been identified as a key strategy in preventing maternal mortality.  

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Nov
11

A qualitative study of community elders' perceptions about the underutilization of formal maternal care and maternal death in rural Nigeria

Underutilization of formal maternal care services and accredited health attendants is a major contributor to the high maternal mortality rates in rural communities in Nigeria. Perceptions of a poor quality of care and inaccessible services in health facilities strongly influence the low use of formal maternal care services.   ​ A qualitative s...
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Oct
08

Stakeholder Perceptions and Context of the Implementation of Performance-Based Financing in District Hospitals in Mali

To improve the performance of the healthcare system, Mali's government implemented a pilot project of performance-based financing (PBF) in the field of reproductive health. It was established in the Koulikoro region. This research analyses the process of implementing PBF at district hospital (DH) level, something which has rarely been done in Afric...
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Sep
16

From Amsterdam to Bamako: a qualitative case study on diffusion entrepreneurs’ contribution to performance-based financing propagation in Mali

For the past 15 years, several donors have promoted performance-based financing (PBF) in Africa for improving health services provision. European and African experts known as 'diffusion entrepreneurs' (DEs) assist with PBF pilot testing.   ​ From Amsterdam to Bamako: a qualitative case study on diffusion entrepreneurs' contribution to performa...
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Aug
22

Getting there: Overcoming barriers to safe motherhood in Ethiopia

Nicholas Castel / IDRC Information campaigns in Jimma, Ethiopia, highlight the importance of medically supervised deliveries.Many pregnant women in rural Ethiopia have a long way to go to reach a health facility where basic emergency obstetric care is available. However, research carried out by Jimma University in Ethiopia and the University of Ottawa, Canada, shows that cultural factors and service infrastructure may be as much to blame as poor road quality and long distances.

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Aug
05

Why rural women do not use primary health centres for pregnancy care: evidence from a qualitative study in Nigeria

​While Primary Health Care has been designed to provide universal access to skilled pregnancy care for the prevention of maternal deaths in Nigeria, available evidence suggests that pregnant women in rural communities often do not use Primary Health Care Centres for skilled care. The objective of this study was to investigate the reasons why women do not use PHC for skilled pregnancy care in rural Nigeria.

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Jun
21

Men's perception of barriers to women's use and access of skilled pregnancy care in rural Nigeria: a qualitative study

Greater paternal engagement is positively associated with improved access to and utilization of maternal services. Despite evidence that male involvement increased uptake of maternal and child services, studies show that few men are participating in MNCH programs.

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May
22

Champions of evidence play a pivotal role in bridging research-to-policy gap

 On their own, research findings are rarely sufficient to trigger policy or programmatic actions to improve people's health and wellbeing. Researchers and donors have grappled with the best way to promote compelling findings and boost uptake of research evidence among policymakers.   Download PDF File Here
Apr
24

Burkina Faso’s promising strategy to eradicate malaria

Luc Serme A member of the research team surveys a mother in Boulsa, Burkina Faso, about her district's seasonal malaria chemoprevention campaign.Last year on World Malaria Day, Burkina Faso's president, Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, pledged to eradicate malaria in the country by 2030. While the disease remains one of the country's most serious public health problems, recent research gives hope that the ambitious goal can be achieved.

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Jan
30

Women lead change for better antenatal care in rural Tanzania

 When the women of Iringa speak about maternal healthcare, the community listens. Their messages to boost women's access to and use of antenatal care services are particularly effective because the women themselves identified the pressing challenges they face. With community support, they also designed strategies to overcome them.

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Jan
01

Using livelihoods to support primary health care for South Sudanese refugees in Kiryandongo, Uganda

Introduction:

Conflict in South Sudan has displaced 2.3 million people, of whom 789,098 (35%) have taken refuge in Uganda – a country that allows refugees to work, own property, start their own businesses and access public health services. In this context, refugees have identified livelihoods and primary health care as key priorities for their wellbeing.

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Oct
25

Under five mortality patterns and associated maternal risk factors in sub-Saharan Africa: A multi-country analysis

 Under-5 mortality rate in the sub-Saharan region has remained unabated. Worse still, information on the regional trend and associated determinants are not readily available. Knowledge of the trend and determinants of under-5 mortality are essential for effective design of intervention programmes that will enhance their survival. Under five mo...
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Aug
22

Good Practice in Knowledge Translation as a Tool for Applied Research

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Apr
08

Ethical Considerations in Knowledge Translation and Implementation Research

Dawson, A. and Y. Paul (2006). "Mass public health programmes and the obligations of sponsoring and participating organisations." Journal of medical ethics 32(10): 580-583.  http://jme.bmj.com/content/32/10/580.shortNixon, S. and L. Forman (2008). "Exploring synergies between human rights and public health ethics: A whole greater than the sum of its parts." BMC International Health and Human Rights 8(1): 2. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1186%2F1472-698X-8-2Dawson, A. J. (2015). "Ebola: what it tells us about medical ethics." Journal of medical ethics 41(1): 107-110.  http://jme.bmj.com/content/41/1/107.full?sid=d38806d7-a7b9-407e-b46a-c659a74559e4
Apr
08

Setting Standards for Evaluation and Monitoring in IMCHA

Neufeld, V., Cole, D.C., Boyd, A., Njelesani, D., Bates, I., and S.R. Hanney (2014). Perspectives on Evaluating Global Health Research for Development: A Background Paper. Taking stock of current practice and ways to improve it.  http://www.ccghr.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/EGHR4D-final-paper.pdf
Apr
08

Innovations in MNCH Research

Say, L., et al. (2014). "Global causes of maternal death: a WHO systematic analysis." The Lancet Global Health 2(6): e323-e333.  http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2214109X1470227XWorld Health, O. (2014). "Trends in maternal mortality: 1990 to 2013. Estimates by WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA, The World Bank and the United Nations Population Division." World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.  http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/publications/monitoring/maternal-mortality-2013/en/McCoy, D., et al. (2010). "Maternal, neonatal and child health interventions and services: moving from knowledge of what works to systems that deliver." International Health 2(2): 87-98. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1876341310000240The World Bank. (2014). The evolution of programs designed to increase utilization of skilled birth attendance in Nigeria. Science of Delivery Case Study. Washington Dc
Apr
08

Let’s Talk Gender and Equity – Strengthening Research Methodology to Meet the Challenge

Why gender matters to young child survival and development

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Jul
19

Getting the healthcare basics right for pregnant women in Nigeria

Women's Health and Action Research Centre Nigeria has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. The country's estimated 40,000 maternal deaths annually account for approximately 14% of the global total, according to an African Population and Health Research Center fact sheet. A major reason for these deaths is that many women, particularly in rural areas, don't go to primary health centres for antenatal care, post-natal care, or for giving birth. 

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Jun
20

Dramatic Delivery

Federation of Muslim Women Association in Nigeria

In northern Nigeria, soap-opera-style videos are helping to educate couples about maternal and child health. These videos are just one part of an innovative five-year pilot project aimed at preventing pregnancy complications in a country with one of the highest rates of maternal death in the world. 

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Jun
18

Perceptions and experiences related to health and health inequality among rural communities in Jimma Zone, Ethiopia: a rapid qualitative assessment

Background

The Safe Motherhood Research Project studies the implementation and scale-up of maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) initiatives in Jimma Zone, Ethiopia. This qualitative rapid assessment study was undertaken to explore community perceptions and experiences related to health, health inequality and other MNCH themes. 

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Jun
11

Maternal health research concerns men too

At first glance, maternal health only seems to focus on women and children. After all, it is maternal health. But women's health during pregnancy and childbirth is also linked to a wide variety of non-biological and non-medical factors. These factors include the value that people and communities place on women's health, access to education and information, and the capacity to make autonomous decisions about, for example, attending prenatal care classes and giving birth in a health facility. 

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Apr
18

Predictors of women's utilization of primary health care for skilled pregnancy care in rural Nigeria

Although Primary Health Care (PHC) was designed to provide universal access to skilled pregnancy care for the prevention of maternal deaths, very little is known of the factors that predict the use of PHC for skilled maternity care in rural parts of Nigeria - where its use is likely to have a greater positive impact on maternal health care.   ...
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Apr
04

A community approach for improving maternal health

The delivery of new surgical equipment to the General Hospital of Marrere, Mozambique earlier this year was an important step for improving maternal and child health. It was also a milestone in the implementation of a research project led by Universidade Lúrio in Mozambique and the University of Saskatchewan in Canada, funded through the Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa (IMCHA) initiative. Securing the equipment needed for emergency obstetrical care is just one of the many project interventions underway to reduce maternal and newborn mortality. 

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Apr
04

Increasing women's access to skilled pregnancy care to reduce maternal and perinatal mortality in rural Edo State, Nigeria: a randomized controlled trial

​Nigeria presently has the second highest absolute number of maternal deaths and perinatal deaths (stillbirth and neonatal deaths) in the world. The country accounts for up to 14% of global maternal deaths and is second only to India in the number of women who die during childbirth. Increasing women's access to skilled pregnancy care to reduce mate...
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Mar
18

Giving girls and women the power to decide

Access to information and services for contraception and birth spacing are critical to maternal and child health programming. It is no surprise then, that IDRC is supporting research in sub-Saharan Africa to investigate emerging questions and to propose ways to improve the reproductive health of women and adolescents.

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Feb
01

ECSA Maternal Health Infographic

Investing in maternal health is key to saving lives of women who die as a result of complications due to pregnancy and childbirth. HMC resolutions urged MS to:   Download PDF File Here
Jan
18

Addressing maternal and child health in fragile contexts

Research shows that creative solutions can overcome barriers to access to health services in fragile contexts. Innovation is also key to identify sustainable ways of improving maternal and child care, even in difficult contexts such as South Sudan, Uganda, and northern Nigeria.

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Jan
13

Performance-based financing in low-income and middle-income countries: isn't it time for a rethink?

This paper questions the view that performance-based financing (PBF) in the health sector is an effective, efficient and equitable approach to improving the performance of health systems in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs). PBF was conceived as an open approach adapted to specific country needs, having the potential to foster system-w...
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Dec
19

Studying deaths can save lives

 "We all thought her pregnancy was safe," says the husband of 23-year-old Yeshimbet. "She looked fine." But after Yeshimbet gave birth to their son in their home, the bleeding wouldn't stop. She died the next day on the way to the health centre, many hours away on foot.

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Dec
08

Donor-funded project's sustainability assessment: a qualitative case study of a results-based financing pilot in Koulikoro region, Mali

Results-based financing (RBF) is emerging as a new alternative to finance health systems in many African countries. In Mali, a pilot project was conducted to improve demand and supply of health services through financing performance in targeted services.  Donor-funded project's sustainability assessment: a qualitative case study of a results-b...
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Dec
01

Performance-based financing in Mali : can it be called emergence?

The Performance-based financing (PBF) approach in Mali is concisely reviewed in this poster. Pilot programmes and initiatives have been tested in multiple districts towards improving maternal and child health indicators in the country. The information is provided in brief extracts from studies that relate to health policy and implementation. Emerge...
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Sep
29

Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa teams share early findings in Dakar

Louise Guenette/IDRC

As the seven-year Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa (IMCHA) program reached its halfway mark, 80 African and Canadian experts gathered in Dakar, Senegal, from April 24-27, 2017 to discuss the program's emerging findings and to hone their research and policy engagement skills.

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Apr
14

Maternal and child health is a community affair in Senegal

In Senegal, neighbourhood women known as godmothers bring vital maternal and child healthcare information to isolated women. Research is finding ways to make their work sustainable and better valued by the national health system.    Download PDF File Here
Sep
14

Using equitable impact sensitive tool (EQUIST) and knowledge translation to promote evidence to policy link in maternal and child health: report of first EQUIST training workshop in Nigeria

The Equitable Impact Sensitive Tool (EQUIST) designed by UNICEF and knowledge translation (KT) are important strategies that can help policymakers to improve equity and evidence-informed policy making in maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH).  Using equitable impact sensitive tool (EQUIST) and knowledge translation to promote evidence to p...
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May
06

Maternal and Newborn Mortality: Community Opinions on Why Pregnant Women and Newborns Are Dying In Natikiri, Mozambique.

This study carried out by Lúrio University (UniLúrio) Health Sciences Faculty (HSF) in partnership with Nampula Provincial Health Directorate (NPHD), Marrere Hospital (MH) and the University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada constitutes part of the baseline evaluation for an implementation research on maternal and newborn health

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Jan
13

Fourth Global Health Systems Research Symposium features innovative research on improving maternal and child health in Africa

It is women and children across developing countries who suffer most from the shocks and stresses to health systems. In South Sudan — a country ravaged by conflicts — limited infrastructure, lack of health information, and severe shortages of health personnel contribute to high levels of maternal and child mortality. Outbreaks of infectious disease and epidemics have similar consequences — the impact of Ebola on maternal and child health in West Africa is one example.

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Jan
05

Delayed provision of services in hospitals is a barrier to quality maternity care

By Professor Ellen Chirwa

In 2017 a team from Kamuzu College of Nursing, University of Alberta, and AMREF Health Africa implemented research to assess the quality of maternity care services that mothers received at Nkhotakota District Hospital, Ntchisi District Hospital, and Matawale Health Centre in Malawi. We collected information by observing and interviewing health care personnel.


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Oct
17

Abuja workshop calls for evidence-based policies to improve maternal and child health in Nigeria

Innovative interventions to improve maternal and child health in Nigeria were the focus of a workshop in Abuja on September 21, 2016. Nigeria has the second highest absolute number of maternal deaths and perinatal deaths in the world, contributing to approximately 15% of all maternal deaths worldwide. 

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Sep
16

Major funding announcement is made as Minister Bibeau and Parliamentary Secretary Gould visit IDRC projects in sub-Saharan Africa

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Canada's Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced major funding for an IDRC grantee during her August visit to West Africa. In Senegal, Minister Bibeau met with officials from the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences – Next Einstein Initiative (AIMS-NEI), a pan-African network of training centres enabling African students to become innovators driving scientific, educational, and economic self-sufficiency on the continent. 

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Dec
18

Safe delivery

Having successfully delivered her baby at a public health facility in Mityana, a city just west of Uganda's capital, Kampala, in 2009, Sylvia Nalubowa was surprised to learn that her labour wasn't over — she was having twins. But there was a problem. Try as Nalubowa might, her second child was stubbornly resisting entry into the world

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Nov
06

User fee exemption policies in Mali: sustainability jeopardized by the malfunctioning of the health system

In Mali, where rates of attendance at healthcare facilities remain far below what is needed, three user fee exemption policies were instituted to promote access to care. These related to HIV/AIDS treatment, as of 2004, caesarean sections, since 2005, and treatment of malaria in children under five and pregnant women, since 2007.   User fee exe...
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