Maternal, Newborn, & Child Health: Our Impact

On the eve of the International Donors' Conference Towards a New Future in Haiti to be held in New York on March 31, Management Sciences for Health (MSH), urged donors to consider a successful two-pronged development approach that has led to improved health in Haiti."The two-pronged approach is grounded in the principle that the Haitian government must ultimately lead the process but also work together in partnership with NGOs and the private sector," said Dr. Jonathan D. Quick, MD, MPH, President and Chief Executive Officer of MSH.

MSH recently started a five-year project for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) in Nigeria through the Community-based Support for OVC in Nigeria (CUBS) project. Funded by the President’s Fund for Emergency Relief through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the project plans to reach 50,000 OVC and 12,500 caregivers in 11 Nigerian states through a variety of community-based and family-centered service delivery approaches that will support the implementation of Nigeria’s National Plan of Action on OVC. According to CUBS Chief of Party, Dr.

The most recent Frontlines, a news publication produced by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), features a leadership development program offered by MSH in Kenya. "Kenyan Mothers Choose Hospitals for Births," describes how a chief nursing officer at the Kendu Bay Sub-district Hospital applied management skills she learned in a USAID-funded Leadership Development Program offered by MSH to work with her colleagues to nearly double the hospital delivery rate by 60 percent by creating a "Mothers Club" for local women.

MSH’s SDSH project (Santé pour le Développement et la Stabilité d’Haïti—Pwojé Djanm), funded by the United States Agency for International AID (USAID), recently conducted an initial assessment of health facilities in Port-au-Prince. As a result, community-based agents are mobilized and local partners working with SDSH are again providing services to support child health, reproductive health, and the treatment and prevention of infectious diseases, primarily HIV and tuberculosis, in 11 areas in the Port-au-Prince vicinity.

Some of the 700 participants of the male involvement program in Kebbi state, Nigeria. Photo Credit: MSH StaffOn October 20, 2009, 700 men attended a town hall meeting in the Argungu emirate in Kebbi state, hosted by MSH and the United States Agency for International Development, to discuss the vital role of men in maternal and child health in order to promote HIV & AIDS prevention, care, and treatment services in northwestern Nigeria.

A laboratory worker at Kabusunzu Health Center in Kigali, Rwanda. Photo Credit: Tempe Goodhue.Rewarding health service providers in Rwanda for positive results has increased the number of clients served and improved the quality of the services they receive. MSH has documented noteworthy gains in indicators of maternal-child health from 2005 through mid-2009.

Andualem Mohammed, SCMS advisor. Photo Credit: Margaret Hartley.MSH: Please tell me about your background and how you became interested in public health. I am from Ethiopia, and I joined Management Sciences for Health (MSH) as an employee seconded to a Missionaries of Charity orphanage for HIV-positive children, where I became the head of the pharmacy. But I wanted an opportunity to help millions of people instead of hundreds, so I joined the Supply Chain Management System (SCMS) Project as Quantification and Supply Planning Advisor.MSH: What is your role at MSH?

Preventing mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV remains a challenge in Haiti since most institutions providing maternal health care are not equipped to perform deliveries. (A key drug to prevent the transmission of HIV is administered during labor and delivery.) In the North Department, a USAID-funded clinic helps HIV-positive pregnant women receive the full package of services that their status requires.The story of Guise Paulne’s (name changed to protect her privacy) illu-strates the success of these efforts.

MSH: What is your role at MSH? I am the Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) Technical Advisor placed at the Ministry of Health (MOH) in Malawi.MSH: What is the situation in Malawi with respect to the AIDS epidemic? What are Malawi’s greatest challenges in tackling HIV & AIDS? Malawi is experiencing a severe epidemic. Since 1985, when the first AIDS case was diagnosed, HIV prevalence has increased significantly in the 15–49 age group. It rose to 16.2 percent in 1999, before coming down and stabilizing at around 12 percent in 2005.

Girls at Enjil Comprehensive Health Center, Herat Province. Photo by Julie O'Brien.Building on a strong history of health-system strengthening in Afghanistan, MSH is working with its partners to cut by half the high number of child deaths over the next four years. At the end of Taliban rule, Afghanistan registered one of the worst child health statistics in the world: one child in four died before reaching age five.


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