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Investment In Child Nutrition Could Provide Future Economic Benefits, Study Shows

Wall Street Journal: Study Ties Children’s Nutrition to Indonesia’s Future “…In a paper released [Tuesday], a team of economists commissioned by a think tank called the Copenhagen Consensus Center looks at where money can be invested in development to ensure the biggest impact. It finds that every dollar invested in better nutrition in Indonesia could…More

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Chiapas Health Workers Improve Maternal Health with mHealth

Rural Chiapas might appear to be an unlikely place for mHealth initiatives to gain traction—with one person in four unable to read, and little cell phone reception or internet connectivity in the mountains, it would seem that accessing understandable information through mobile technology would be a challenge for health workers and patients alike.Yet the community health workers of Compañeros en Salud (CES) have found unexpected ways to make innovations in mobile health technologies work for them and strengthen their programs.CES, a sister branch of Partners in Health, started training frontline health workers in 2012, who in turn began outreach initiatives to treat patients who previously had to travel long distances and pay exorbitant prices to receive care. Women in Chiapas die in childbirth 70% more often than the national average. In the two years since the project’s start, CES has managed to provide affordable care to tens of thousands of patients. This reach is in some part due to their incorporation of mHealth apps (which function offline once downloaded) to better manage their patient information, minimizing the “time-consuming and error-prone process” of using and maintaining paper health records.Within just one year, the team was able to use this technology to collect health information from over 5,000 patients.More recently, CES staff realized they could use these tablets for more than just data collection and efficient record-keeping; they could also use them as tools to educate health workers and their patients.Mobile apps could also be used to train health workers and help them to build new skills such as identifying symptoms and responding to emergencies. Frontline health workers could also use educational images and messages with patients to help explain a condition or help a patient to describe their symptoms.To explore this idea, CES performed a field-test using the Safe Pregnancy and Birth App, a mobile application developed by Hesperian Health Guides in 2011 to provide life-saving information about pre- and post-natal care. The field test was conducted by community health workers, midwives, and clinic staff, who used the app during checkups with patients

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A novel contraceptive makes life easier in Uganda and beyond

If you had to walk 14 miles and cross a river to get contraception, you might think twice about how to use your time. Do I really need family planning? What are my chances of actually getting pregnant anytime soon? And … Continue reading » ; ; ; ;Related StoriesFriday Think: you can bank on this breast milk appWhat is “frugal science?” A visit to the home of the $1 folding paper microscopeCoverage plan: mobile phone app fights tuberculosis ;

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Expecting Mothers Among First to Benefit from Cellphone Access in Myanmar

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Myanmar was seen as the last frontier in mobile communications until recently when the government


Investment In Child Nutrition Could Provide Future Economic Benefits, Study Shows

Image Indian-schoolchildren-007.jpg

Wall Street Journal: Study Ties Children’s Nutrition to Indonesia’s Future “…In a paper released [Tuesday], a team of economists commissioned by a think tank called the Copenhagen Consensus Center looks at where money can be invested in development to ensure the biggest impact. It finds that every dollar invested in better nutrition in Indonesia could…More


#EndDisrespect on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

Written by Natalie Ramm, MHTF, and Kathleen McDonald, MHTF The connection between gender-based violence and quality sexual, reproductive and maternal health care is important to remember as we celebrate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. In addition to overt acts of violence against women, like sexual assault, there are often more subtle instances of violence—such as disrespect and abuse (D&A) during pregnancy and childbirth—that negatively impact women’s health. For example, in many countries there is often not adequate staff at health facilities to attend to all women’s needs, so that some women deliver alone without a skilled birth attendant. In countries like Tanzania, D&A has been listed among the top reasons why women do not seek out skilled care during childbirth. When women give birth without a skilled birth attendant, or are abused at the hands of a provider, their survival and their infant’s survival is threatened


Intimate partner violence and HIV in sub-Saharan African

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The findings indicate that male controlling behaviour in its own right, or as an indicator of ongoing or severe violence, puts women at risk of HIV infection. HIV prevention interventions should focus on high-prevalence areas and men with controlling behaviour, in addition to violence.


Maternal health jobs

Looking for a job in maternal health? Here’s a round up of what’s available: Jhpiego – Maternal Health Team Leader; Program Officer II CARE – Senior Technical Advisor for Maternal and Child Health; Senior Technical Advisor for Maternal and Child Nutrition Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation – Senior Program Officer, Maternal Newborn and Child Health Merck for Mothers – Director To apply, go to this link. Select “Merck Kenilworth” as Location and “Long Term Assignment” as Position Type. Click “search” and select Job Number 301.


Addressing Maternal Health and Gender-Based Violence in Times of Crisis

In times of crisis, such as conflict, natural disaster, or an epidemic, critical maternal and reproductive health services often become unavailable. For pregnant women, the probability of mortality or morbidity increases; gender-based violence is more common for all, while justice is delayed or ignored; and humanitarian actors try to balance a range of immediate concerns which don’t usually include women’s health. Join us as an expert panel discusses the challenges and interventions available to deliver maternal and reproductive health services and address gender-based violence in times of crisis. We are particularly excited that John Welch–chief clinical officer for Partners in Health’s response to Ebola in Liberia–will be joining the panel and discussing the implications of Ebola on women’s health in Liberia.


Nigeria Should Commit To Policies That Promote Family Planning, UNFPA Head Says

Associated Press: U.N. Agency Encourages Family Planning in Nigeria “The executive director of the United Nations Population Fund is encouraging family planning in Nigeria to manage the country’s population growth. Babatunde Osotimehin told the Associated Press that allowing women to decide when to have children would benefit Nigeria’s economy…” (Oduah, 11/18).


Chiapas Health Workers Improve Maternal Health with mHealth

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Rural Chiapas might appear to be an unlikely place for mHealth initiatives to gain traction—with one person in four unable to read, and little cell phone reception or internet connectivity in the mountains, it would seem that accessing understandable information through mobile technology would be a challenge for health workers and patients alike.Yet the community health workers of Compañeros en Salud (CES) have found unexpected ways to make innovations in mobile health technologies work for them and strengthen their programs.CES, a sister branch of Partners in Health, started training frontline health workers in 2012, who in turn began outreach initiatives to treat patients who previously had to travel long distances and pay exorbitant prices to receive care. Women in Chiapas die in childbirth 70% more often than the national average. In the two years since the project’s start, CES has managed to provide affordable care to tens of thousands of patients. This reach is in some part due to their incorporation of mHealth apps (which function offline once downloaded) to better manage their patient information, minimizing the “time-consuming and error-prone process” of using and maintaining paper health records.Within just one year, the team was able to use this technology to collect health information from over 5,000 patients.More recently, CES staff realized they could use these tablets for more than just data collection and efficient record-keeping; they could also use them as tools to educate health workers and their patients.Mobile apps could also be used to train health workers and help them to build new skills such as identifying symptoms and responding to emergencies. Frontline health workers could also use educational images and messages with patients to help explain a condition or help a patient to describe their symptoms.To explore this idea, CES performed a field-test using the Safe Pregnancy and Birth App, a mobile application developed by Hesperian Health Guides in 2011 to provide life-saving information about pre- and post-natal care. The field test was conducted by community health workers, midwives, and clinic staff, who used the app during checkups with patients


NPR Blog Interviews Reproductive Health Expert About Popularity Of Sterilization Among Women

NPR: Why Sterilization Is The Most Popular Form Of Family Planning “…[F]emale sterilization is the world’s most popular form of family planning. In 2009, 223 million women used sterilization as birth control and that number is on the rise. … For insights, Goats and Soda talked with John Townsend, director of reproductive health at the…More


Remembering the Mother in Preterm Birth

By Katie Millar, Technical Writer, MHTF As the world recognizes World Prematurity Day today, the Maternal Health Task Force is ever mindful of the key role a woman’s and mother’s health plays in the prevention of premature birth. While improving neonatal care and promoting interventions—such as kangaroo care are important—the rising rate of preterm births suggests prevention is key for decreasing neonatal mortality rates. And what would prevention be without ensuring the health of the woman before and during pregnancy? The health of a pregnant woman is paramount, not only for her own survival and health, but also to prevent the number one killer of neonates: prematurity.


A novel contraceptive makes life easier in Uganda and beyond

Countriesbyfertilityrate.svg

If you had to walk 14 miles and cross a river to get contraception, you might think twice about how to use your time. Do I really need family planning? What are my chances of actually getting pregnant anytime soon? And … Continue reading » ; ; ; ;Related StoriesFriday Think: you can bank on this breast milk appWhat is “frugal science?” A visit to the home of the $1 folding paper microscopeCoverage plan: mobile phone app fights tuberculosis ;


Prevention of neonatal pneumonia and sepsis via maternal immunisation

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Pneumonia is the leading killer of children younger than 5 years, and the greatest risk of mortality from pneumonia in childhood is in the neonatal period. Substantial reductions in childhood pneumonia deaths have been hindered by a lack of progress in addressing neonatal mortality. Deaths in the neonatal period constitute 41·6% of the 6·3 million children who die annually before their fifth birthday. In 2010, there were an estimated 1·7 million cases of neonatal sepsis and 510 000 cases of neonatal pneumonia.


China Has Not Seen Increase In Childbirth Numbers Since Loosening Family Planning Rules

Foreign Policy: ‘Having a Second Kid Isn’t as Simple as Adding Another Pair of Chopsticks’ “When China loosened its family planning rules a year ago in November, allowing more couples to have a second child, it was big news. It marked the biggest reform of China’s strict family planning rules — which limited most urban…More


An overlooked WWI legacy: maternal and child health in sub-Saharan Africa

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Chris Simms, Lancet Global Health Blog | An important legacy of World War I was the rise of maternal and child health care in many Read More


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