Success Factors in Women’s and Children’s Health: Multisector Pathways to Progress

Introduction

There has been significant progress worldwide towards Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5a—to reduce child and maternal deaths. Since 1990, maternal and child mortality rates have both reduced by around 50%, but the numbers of preventable deaths are still unacceptably high.

We know about the leading causes of preventable maternal and child mortality around the world and effective interventions to address them. We know less about why some countries at similar levels of income are better than others at preventing maternal and child deaths, or what strategies they have used to accelerate progress.

The Success Factors for Women’s and Children’s Health Study aims to answer these questions. To do this, the study uses five main methods: statistical analysis and econometric modelling of data across 144 low- and middle-income countries; Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) to identify the key factors that characterised progress in countries; a literature review of progress in low-and middle-income countries; country-specific data and literature review in 10 countries that were on the ‘fast track’ to achieving MDGs 4 and 5a in 2012; and evidence synthesis across methods.

Currently in each of the ten ‘fast track’ countries, country teams are undertaking a multi-stakeholder review and policy analysis of success factors for women’s and children’s health.

In addition to the country teams, the overall study is coordinated by the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health with the World Health Organization, the World Bank, the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and other partner organizations.

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