Maternal and Newborn Health
Interact works to make pregnancy and birth safer for women and their children.
In many parts of Africa giving birth can be dangerous. Mothers and babies die in pregnancy and birth all too often – usually from preventable causes.
In Malawi, according to a 2010 report, 675 women died of pregnancy-related causes for every 100,000 live births, compared to less than 10 in the UK.
In Ethiopia, nine out of ten women give birth without skilled help, and in 2009, only 15 per cent were using contraception.
There are three common delays which women in developing countries often face when trying to get care maternal care
The first delay: Women in developing countries, particularly in rural areas far from towns and medical centers often simply don't know benefits of maternal health services
– even simple things like having a medical professional present during labor, instead preferring the services of well meaning but unskilled traditional birth attendants.
Women are also often denied the authority and freedom in male dominated societies to make their own decisions on seeking health care.
Even if woman know the benefits and want to get maternal health care, a lack of transport can often be the second major delay to getting it.
Women may also experience poor quality services, which causes a further delay. Most often, untrained or unsupported staff, and overstretched health centers short of vital supplies.
We’re working tirelessly with our partners to improve maternal health services and end the three delays through our programmes like Closing the Gaps in Uganda, Malawi and Ethiopia.
Interact addresses the Three Delays women face in getting maternal health care by:
Training community volunteers to raise awareness and counsel women on the benefits of:
- Ante-natal care
- Delivering at a health center
- Returning for post natal services like vaccines for infants
- Family planning.
We help provide new transport options for women in remote areas. We helping our local partners provide good quality maternal health services to vulnerable and remote communities. Provide special support to HIV positive mothers and help prevent mother to child transmission of HIV. And, we work with our partners and other maternal health service providers to ensure maternal health services are made sustainable
Read more on our maternal health work below or see how you can get involved and help us help new mothers.
Closing the Gaps between mothers and care
Around the world hundreds of thousands of women still die in child birth each year. According to a 2010 report for every 100,000 women giving birth in Malawi, 675 die each year. For the most part these deaths would be prevented, if only those mothers had skilled attendance at birth, and a step towards the kind of health services that mean in the UK, less than 10 mothers in a 100,000 die giving birth.
If Only There Could be More Midwives Like Miriam.
When Programme manager Ceri Angood recently visited our Closing the Gaps project in Uganda (supported by the Big Lottery Fund). She was reminded of the critical importance of the dedication of individuals in saving lives at birth.