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Mobile obstetrics project improves health of mothers in Eastern Burma
Date:8/3/2010

A community-based maternal health delivery strategy known as the MOM Project (mobile obstetric medics) dramatically increased access to maternal health care services for internally displaced woman in eastern Burma, according to a study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Among the findings, the study showed a ten-fold increase in the proportion of women assisted at delivery by workers skilled in providing emergency obstetric care, including preventing and treating hemorrhage, injectable antibiotics and anticonvulsants, and community-based blood transfusion. Access to maternal and reproductive health is poor throughout Burma (also known as Myanmar) particularly among internally displaced ethnic communities. The researchers believe the MOM Project could be a model for maternal health care delivery in settings where resources are extremely limited. The study appears in the August 3 edition of the journal PLoS Medicine.

"The MOM Project's focus on task-shifting, capacity building and empowerment at the community level might serve as a model approach for delivering needed maternal health care in severely constrained areas," said Luke Mullany, PhD, MHS, lead author of the study and an associate professor with the Bloomberg School's Center for Public Health and Human Rights.

The study was conducted in collaboration with four ethnic health organizations working along the Burma-Thailand border. The MOM Project provided a three-tiered network of community-based providers, which included traditional birth attendants to improve antenatal care services, health workers to provide supplies and prevent post-birth complications, and maternal health workers that were responsible for oversight and training; as well as providing emergency care. Between October 2006 and January 2009, the researchers conducted two cluster surveys of ever-married women of reproductive age. Mullany and colleagues from the Global Health Ac
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Contact: Tim Parsons
tmparson@jhsph.edu
410-955-7619
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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