Center for Maternal and Newborn Health

Liverpool, United Kingdom

Center for Maternal and Newborn Health

Liverpool, United Kingdom
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Smith H.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Stein K.,World Health Organization
International journal of gynaecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics | Year: 2017

Providing information and education to women and girls living with female genital mutilation (FGM) could be an important influence on their healthcare-seeking behavior. Healthcare providers also need adequate knowledge and skills to provide good quality care to this population. Recent WHO guidelines on managing health complications from FGM contain best practice statements for health education and information interventions for women and providers. This qualitative evidence synthesis summarizes the values and preferences of girls and women living with FGM, and healthcare providers, together with other evidence on the context and conditions of these interventions. The synthesis highlights that healthcare providers lack skills and training to manage women, and women are concerned about the lack of discussion about FGM with providers. There is a need for more training for providers, and further research to understand how health information interventions may be perceived or experienced by women living with FGM in different contexts. © 2017 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. The World Health Organization retains copyright and all other rights in the manuscript of this article as submitted for publication.


Smith H.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Stein K.,World Health Organization
International journal of gynaecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics | Year: 2017

Deinfibulation can prevent or treat gynecological and obstetric complications in women living with type III female genital mutilation (FGM), and subsequently improve childbirth outcomes. Recently published WHO guidelines recommend use of deinfibulation in both circumstances. However, to really impact practice, evidence-based guidance needs to be matched with evidence-based implementation strategies. This qualitative evidence synthesis provides information on the factors that facilitate or act as barriers to use of deinfibulation, and the context and conditions that are necessary for implementing the procedure, including healthcare providers' knowledge and experience, the service delivery environment, as well as broader health system contexts. This information is of great value for policy makers and others considering this as an option for better clinical care of women living with FGM. © 2017 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. The World Health Organization retains copyright and all other rights in the manuscript of this article as submitted for publication.


Smith H.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Stein K.,World Health Organization
International journal of gynaecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics | Year: 2017

Women and girls living with female genital mutilation (FGM) are more likely to experience psychological problems than women without FGM. As well as psychological support, this population may need additional care when seeking surgical interventions to correct complications of FGM. Recent WHO guidelines recommend cognitive behavioral therapy for women and girls experiencing anxiety disorders, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder. The guidelines also suggest that preoperative counselling for deinfibulation, and psychological support alongside surgical interventions, can help women manage the physiological and psychological changes following surgery. This synthesis summarizes evidence on women's values and preferences, and the context and conditions that may be required to provide psychological and counselling interventions. Understanding women's views, their own ways of coping, as well social and cultural factors that influence women's mental well-being, may help identify the types of interventions this population needs at different times and stages of their lives. © 2017 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. The World Health Organization retains copyright and all other rights in the manuscript of this article as submitted for publication.


Pyone T.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Smith H.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Van Den Broek N.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health
Health Policy and Planning | Year: 2017

Governance of the health system is a relatively new concept and there are gaps in understanding what health system governance is and how it could be assessed. We conducted a systematic review of the literature to describe the concept of governance and the theories underpinning as applied to health systems; and to identify which frameworks are available and have been applied to assess health systems governance. Frameworks were reviewed to understand how the principles of governance might be operationalized at different levels of a health system. Electronic databases and web portals of international institutions concerned with governance were searched for publications in English for the period January 1994 to February 2016. Sixteen frameworks developed to assess governance in the health system were identified and are described. Of these, six frameworks were developed based on theories fromnew institutional economics; three are primarily informed by political science and public management disciplines; three arise from the development literature and four use multidisciplinary approaches. Only five of the identified frameworks have been applied. These used the principal-agent theory, theory of common pool resources, North's institutional analysis and the cybernetics theory. Governance is a practice, dependent on arrangements set at political or national level, but which needs to be operationalized by individuals at lower levels in the health system; multilevel frameworks acknowledge this. Three frameworks were used to assess governance at all levels of the health system. Health system governance is complex and difficult to assess; the concept of governance originates from different disciplines and is multidimensional. There is a need to validate and apply existing frameworks and share lessons learnt regarding which frameworks work well in which settings. A comprehensive assessment of governance could enable policy makers to prioritize solutions for problems identified as well as replicate and scale-up examples of good practice. © 2016 World Health Organization.


Madaj B.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Smith H.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Mathai M.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Roos N.,World Health Organization | Van Den Broek N.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health
Bulletin of the World Health Organization | Year: 2017

Objective To assess the feasibility of applying the World Health Organization’s proposed 15 indicators of quality of care for maternal and newborn health at health-facility level in low- and middle-income settings. Methods Six of the indicators are about maternal health, five are for newborn health and four are general cross-cutting indicators. We used data collected routinely in facility registers and obtained as part of facility assessments from 963 health-care facilities specializing in maternity services in 10 countries in Africa and Asia. We made a feasibility assessment of the availability of data and the clarity of indicator definitions and identified additional information and data collection processes needed to apply the proposed indicators in real-life settings. Findings Of the indicators evaluated, 10 were clearly defined, of which four could be applied directly in the field and six would require revisions to operationalize them. The other five indicators require further development, with one of them being ready for implementation by using information readily available in registers and four requiring further information before deployment. For indicators that measure coverage of care or availability of services or products, there is a need to further strengthen measurement. Information on emergency obstetric complications was not recorded in a standard manner, thus limiting the reliability of the information. Conclusion While some of the proposed indicators can already be applied, other indicators need to be refined or will need additional sources and methods of data collection to be applied in real-world settings. © 2017, World Health Organization. All rights reserved.


Ameh C.A.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Van Den Broek N.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health
Best Practice and Research: Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology | Year: 2015

An estimated 289,000 maternal deaths, 2.6 million stillbirths and 2.4 million newborn deaths occur globally each year, with the majority occurring around the time of childbirth. The medical and surgical interventions to prevent this loss of life are known, and most maternal and newborn deaths are in principle preventable. There is a need to build the capacity of health-care providers to recognize and manage complications during pregnancy, childbirth and the post-partum period. Skills-and-drills competency-based training in skilled birth attendance, emergency obstetric care and early newborn care (EmONC) is an approach that is successful in improving knowledge and skills. There is emerging evidence of this resulting in improved availability and quality of care. To evaluate the effectiveness of EmONC training, operational research using an adapted Kirkpatrick framework and a theory of change approach is needed. The Making It Happen programme is an example of this. © 2015 The Authors.


Aminu M.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Unkels R.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Mdegela M.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Utz B.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | And 2 more authors.
BJOG : an international journal of obstetrics and gynaecology | Year: 2014

BACKGROUND: Annually, 2.6 million stillbirths occur worldwide, 98% in developing countries. It is crucial that we understand causes and contributing factors.METHODS: We conducted a systematic review of studies reporting factors associated with and cause(s) of stillbirth in low- and middle-income countries (2000-13). Narrative synthesis to compare similarities and differences between studies with similar outcome categories.MAIN RESULTS: A total of 142 studies with 2.1% from low-income settings were investigated; most report on stillbirths occurring at health facility level. Definition of stillbirth varied; 10.6% of studies (mainly upper middle-income countries) used a cut-off point of ≥22 weeks of gestation and 32.4% (mainly lower income countries) used ≥28 weeks of gestation. Factors reported to be associated with stillbirth include poverty and lack of education, maternal age (>35 or <20 years), parity (1, ≥5), lack of antenatal care, prematurity, low birthweight, and previous stillbirth. The most frequently reported cause of stillbirth was maternal factors (8-50%) including syphilis, positive HIV status with low CD4 count, malaria and diabetes. Congenital anomalies are reported to account for 2.1-33.3% of stillbirths, placental causes (7.4-42%), asphyxia and birth trauma (3.1-25%), umbilical problems (2.9-33.3%), and amniotic and uterine factors (6.5-10.7%). Seven different classification systems were identified but applied in only 22% of studies that could have used a classification system. A high percentage of stillbirths remain 'unclassified' (3.8-57.4%).CONCLUSION: To build capacity for perinatal death audit, clear guidelines and a suitable classification system to assign cause of death must be developed. Existing classification systems may need to be adapted. Better data and more data are urgently needed. © 2014 Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.


Banke-Thomas A.O.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Madaj B.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Charles A.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Van Den Broek N.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health
BMC Public Health | Year: 2015

Background: Increased scarcity of public resources has led to a concomitant drive to account for value-for-money of interventions. Traditionally, cost-effectiveness, cost-utility and cost-benefit analyses have been used to assess value-for-money of public health interventions. The social return on investment (SROI) methodology has capacity to measure broader socio-economic outcomes, analysing and computing views of multiple stakeholders in a singular monetary ratio. This review provides an overview of SROI application in public health, explores lessons learnt from previous studies and makes recommendations for future SROI application in public health. Methods: A systematic review of peer-reviewed and grey literature to identify SROI studies published between January 1996 and December 2014 was conducted. All articles describing conduct of public health SROI studies and which reported a SROI ratio were included. An existing 12-point framework was used to assess study quality. Data were extracted using pre-developed codes: SROI type, type of commissioning organisation, study country, public health area in which SROI was conducted, stakeholders included in study, discount rate used, SROI ratio obtained, time horizon of analysis and reported lessons learnt. Results: 40 SROI studies, of varying quality, including 33 from high-income countries and 7 from low middle-income countries, met the inclusion criteria. SROI application increased since its first use in 2005 until 2011, declining afterwards. SROI has been applied across different public health areas including health promotion (12 studies), mental health (11), sexual and reproductive health (6), child health (4), nutrition (3), healthcare management (2), health education and environmental health (1 each). Qualitative and quantitative methods have been used to gather information for public health SROI studies. However, there remains a lack of consensus on who to include as beneficiaries, how to account for counterfactual and appropriate study-time horizon. Reported SROI ratios vary widely (1.1:1 to 65:1). Conclusions: SROI can be applied across healthcare settings. Best practices such as analysis involving only beneficiaries (not all stakeholders), providing justification for discount rates used in models, using purchasing power parity equivalents for monetary valuations and incorporating objective designs such as case-control or before-and-after designs for accounting for outcomes will improve robustness of public health SROI studies. © 2015 Banke-Thomas et al.


Mccauley M.E.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | van den Broek N.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Dou L.,University of Liverpool | Othman M.,Albaha University
Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews | Year: 2015

Background: The World Health Organization recommends routine vitamin A supplementation during pregnancy or lactation in areas with endemic vitamin A deficiency (where night blindness occurs), based on the expectation that supplementation will improve maternal and newborn outcomes including mortality, morbidity and prevention of anaemia or infection. Objectives: To review the effects of supplementation of vitamin A, or one of its derivatives, during pregnancy, alone or in combination with other vitamins and micronutrients, on maternal and newborn clinical outcomes. Search methods: We searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group's Trials Register (30 March 2015) and reference lists of retrieved studies. Selection criteria: All randomised or quasi-randomised trials, including cluster-randomised trials, evaluating the effect of vitamin A supplementation in pregnant women. Data collection and analysis: Two review authors independently assessed trials for inclusion and risk of bias, extracted data and checked them for accuracy. Main results: We reviewed 106 reports of 35 trials, published between 1931 and 2015. We included 19 trials including over 310,000 women, excluded 15 trials and one is ongoing. Overall, seven trials were judged to be of low risk of bias, three were high risk of bias and for nine it was unclear. 1) Vitamin A alone versus placebo or no treatment Overall, when trial results are pooled, vitamin A supplementation does not affect the risk of maternal mortality (risk ratio (RR) 0.88, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.65 to 1.20; four trials Ghana, Nepal, Bangladesh, UK, high quality evidence), perinatal mortality (RR 1.01, 95% CI 0.95 to 1.07; one study, high quality evidence), neonatal mortality, stillbirth, neonatal anaemia, preterm birth (RR 0.98, 95% CI 0.94 to 1.01, five studies, high quality evidence), or the risk of having a low birthweight baby. Vitamin A supplementation reduces the risk of maternal night blindness (RR 0.79, 95% CI 0.64 to 0.98; two trials). There is evidence that vitamin A supplements may reduce maternal clinical infection (RR 0.45, 95% CI 0.20 to 0.99, five trials; South Africa, Nepal, Indonesia, Tanzania, UK, low quality evidence) and maternal anaemia (RR 0.64, 95% CI 0.43 to 0.94; three studies, moderate quality evidence). 2) Vitamin A alone versus micronutrient supplements without vitamin A Vitamin A alone compared to micronutrient supplements without vitamin A does not decrease maternal clinical infection (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.83 to 1.18, two trials, 591 women). No other primary or secondary outcomes were reported 3) Vitamin A with other micronutrients versus micronutrient supplements without vitamin A Vitamin A supplementation (with other micronutrients) does not decrease perinatal mortality (RR 0.51, 95% CI 0.10 to 2.69; one study, low quality evidence), maternal anaemia (RR 0.86, 95% CI 0.68 to 1.09; three studies, low quality evidence), maternal clinical infection (RR 0.95, 95% CI 0.80 to 1.13; I2 = 45%, two studies, low quality evidence) or preterm birth (RR 0.39, 95% CI 0.08 to 1.93; one study, low quality evidence). In HIV-positive women vitamin A supplementation given with other micronutrients was associated with fewer low birthweight babies (< 2.5 kg) in the supplemented group in one study (RR 0.67, 95% CI 0.47 to 0.96; one study, 594 women). Authors' conclusions: The pooled results of three large trials in Nepal, Ghana and Bangladesh (with over 153,500 women) do not currently suggest a role for antenatal vitamin A supplementation to reduce maternal or perinatal mortality. However, the populations studied were probably different with regard to baseline vitamin A status and there were problems with follow-up of women. There is good evidence that antenatal vitamin A supplementation reduces maternal night blindness, maternal anaemia for women who live in areas where vitamin A deficiency is common or who are HIV-positive. In addition the available evidence suggests a reduction in maternal infection, but these data are not of a high quality. © 2016 The Cochrane Collaboration. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


Van Den Broek N.R.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Jean-Baptiste R.,Center for Maternal and Newborn Health | Neilson J.P.,University of Liverpool
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Background: Assessment of risk factors for preterm birth in a population with high incidence of preterm birth and HIV infection. Methods: Secondary analysis of data for 2,149 women included in a community based randomized placebo controlled trial for the prevention of preterm birth (APPLe trial (ISRCTN84023116) with gestational age at birth determined through ultrasound measurement in early pregnancy. Multivariate Logistic Regression analyses to obtain models for three outcome variables: all preterm, early preterm, and late preterm birth. Findings: No statistical differences were noted for the prevalence of HIV infection (p = 0.30) or syphilis (p = 0.12) between women who delivered preterm versus term. BMI (Adjusted OR 0.91 (0.85-0.97); p = 0.005) and weight gain (Adjusted OR 0.89 (0.82-0.97); p = 0.006) had an independent, protective effect. Previous preterm birth doubled the odds of preterm birth (Adjusted OR 2.13 (1.198-3.80); p = 0.01). Persistent malaria (despite malaria prophylaxis) increased the risk of late preterm birth (Adjusted OR 1.99 (1.05-3.79); p = 0.04). Age <20 (Adjusted OR 1.73 (1.03-2.90); p = 0.04) and anemia (Adjusted OR 1.95 (1.08-3.52); p = 0.03) were associated with early preterm birth (<34 weeks). Conclusions: Despite claims that HIV infection is an important cause of preterm birth in Africa, we found no evidence of an association in this population (unexposed to anti-retroviral treatment). Persistent malaria was associated with late preterm birth. Maternal undernourishment and anemia were independently associated with early preterm birth. The study did not assess whether the link was direct or whether a common precursor such as chronic infection was responsible for both maternal effects and early labour. © 2014 van den Broek et al.

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