Ideas to Projects to Impacts: Results and Learning from the MOMI Project
Missed Opportunities in Maternal and Infant Health | MOMI
To address maternal and newborn morbidity and mortality in sub-Saharan Africa, the MOMI project is dedicated to improving postpartum services by conducting health system research to strengthen integrated postpartum health care delivery. The project commenced in 2011 and concludes in 2016. Aurore Guieu and Els Duysburgh are based at Ghent University’s International Centre for Reproductive Health.
What are the objectives of the MOMI project?
MOMI seeks to improve maternal and newborn health through a focus on the post partum period, which has too often been overlooked. By concentrating on the first year after childbirth, our project aims at reducing the risk of death and improving women’s well-being. We believe that the integration of maternal, newborn and reproductive health care during the postpartum period can result in better postpartum care, which in turn has the potential to improve health outcomes for women and their children.
What was the nature of the research that was undertaken?
The objectives are to be reached through health system research undertaken in a district or sub-district in four sub-Saharan countries, namely Burkina Faso, Kenya, Malawi and Mozambique. Because we want to point at missed opportunities in care delivery and find out what are the determinants to improve this delivery, we focus on health systems and services rather than on clinical interventions per se. The interventions are developed at our four sites under the condition they are appropriate, sustainable, effective and replicable. They are implemented in health facilities as well as in communities.
What happens next? Will the project’s research results be converted into, for example, a new service, product, or social outcome?
MOMI is developed in close cooperation with stakeholders and policy-makers at the four research sites, with the objective of strengthening support for better postpartum care. Because sustainability is critical to our interventions, the project has trained health facility staff as well as community health workers on postpartum care and family planning, a set of skills that will remain when MOMI comes to an end. Facilities and communities are also being equipped with sustainable tools: logs to improve reporting and follow-up of postpartum visits, dialogue sessions in the communities, bicycles to facilitate home visits.
In what ways has the project already achieved its objectives?
MOMI is currently in its third year and will run until 31 January 2016. Our interventions are consequently ongoing. MOMI discerns that the Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5, to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health respectively, require a substantial reduction in the rates of mortality among women in postpartum and newborns. Project outputs, such as the Cross-Country Situation Analysis of Maternal and Newborn Care in Burkina Faso, Kenya, Malawi and Mozambique report, have relevance not only in African countries, but globally.
Learn More About MOMI
Visit the MOMI project website: www.momiproject.eu.
*This article first appeared in the CAAST-Net Plus Magazine of December 2014.
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