Guidelines for Maternal Death Surveillance and Response (MDSR): Region of the Americas


Reducing preventable maternal mortality requires a surveillance system that systematically captures accurate, timely and disaggregated data on how many women die, where, why and when in the reproductive process. Health policymakers, programmers, advocates, and communities must then use surveillance data to inform their response to the factors contributing to maternal mortality.

The Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) published the first Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) Guidelines for Maternal Mortality Epidemiological Surveillance in 1996. In 2013, WHO launched a global framework Maternal death surveillance and response (MSDR): Technical guidance information for action to prevent maternal death, which emphasized the need for effective response and improved accountability to surveillance findings. In response, the LAC Regional Task Force for Maternal Mortality Reduction updated its 1996 guidelines and adapted the new MSDR framework in its 2015 Guidelines for Maternal Death Surveillance and Response (MDSR): Region of the Americas. This document highlights the region's progress in reducing maternal mortality and incorporates lessons from experiences in Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, Jamaica and Mexico.

This publication was made possible with funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) with contributions made by the FCI Program of MSH.