Study pinpoints areas for reducing maternal and child mortality

Study is for children, women from low incomes so they can make healthy choices.

Express December 16, 2011

KARACHI: A global study conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Aga Khan University (AKU), and The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH), has identified 56 key interventions, which they believe will reduce child and maternal mortality drastically.

The study, titled “Essential Interventions, Commodities and Guidelines for Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health”, was designed to help children and women in low and middle-income countries make better decisions for their health and well-being according to the limited resources available to them.

The interventions have been classified into six target groups, adolescent and pre-pregnancy, pregnancy, childbirth, postnatal for the mother, postnatal for the newborn and infancy and childhood.

The interventions include, providing folic acid supplements in the diets of adolescent and unmarried girls, calcium supplements to prevent hypertension before pregnancy, and managing hemorrhages after childbirth with uterine massage and uterotonics during childbirth.

With identifying the interventions, the study also focused on the need for training and listed the equipment required. For example, if newborns are not breathing, resuscitation equipment is needed.

“I’m sure that this research will help reduce deaths among mothers, newborns and children and help direct funds and resources to concerted action,” said AKU’s Head Division of Women and Child Health, Professor Paediatrics and Child Health, Division of Women and Child Health.  The PMNCH has 440 partners, including countries, UN and multilateral agencies, non-governmental organisations, health groups, foundations, academic and research institutions, and the private sector. They will distribute this list through its global network and advocate actively for its use.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 17th, 2011.


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