India on 14 February 2017 joined the United Nations Network for Improving Quality of Care for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health with an aim to reduce maternal and newborn deaths by half.
On this occasion, eight other countries, including Bangladesh, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda joined the multilateral initiative along with India.
About Network for Improving Quality of Care for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health
• It is a multinational network for improving quality of care for maternal, newborn and child health.
• The network will bring together officials from ministries of health, health care professionals and bilateral and multilateral development partners.
• The network has three goals. They are –
i. Reduce maternal and newborn mortality in health facilities in the target country districts by 50 per cent over five years
ii. Reduce avoidable morbidity due to severe post-partum haemorrhage by 50 per cent
iii. Improve experience of healthcare
• Functions of the network: It empowers national leadership by strengthening national and district governance healthcare structures.
• It seeks to accelerate action by adapting and adopting WHO’s eight standards for improving quality of maternal and newborn care in health facilities.
• It helps the governments in creating national packages of quality improvement interventions.
• It provides the necessary policy inputs to the government in developing, strengthening and sustaining clinical and managerial capabilities to support quality of care improvement.
• Every year, 3,03,000 women die during pregnancy and childbirth worldwide.
• Around 2.7 million babies die during the first 28 days of life and 2.6 million babies are stillborn. And, most of these deaths could be prevented with quality care during pregnancy and childbirth.
• Against this backdrop, the United Nations has launched the Network for Improving Quality of Care for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health to strengthen the policy framework related to health care.