Long Read
19 October 2015

Innovative approach: saving lives at birth

One thousand participants are gathered at the Global Maternal Newborn Health Conference in Mexico City from October 18-21 to discuss strategies for reaching every mother and newborn with high-quality health services. Simavi’s Project Office SRHR, Renate Douwes, is joining the conference. She will present our Check2gether project, a life-saving innovation that brings antenatal care into the heart of remote communities.

Antenatal care

According to the World Health Organisation, 33 to 50% of all maternal deaths are caused by hypertension and hemorrhage. These deaths can be avoided if good quality and culturally sensitive antenatal care is available. In northern Ghana, effective antenatal care (ANC) delivery is hampered by low quality services due to a lack of equipment and shortages of staff. Delayed ANC attendance due to socio-cultural factors, a lack of understanding and the fact that clinics or hospitals are far away, are another roadblock. To tackle this problem and reduce maternal mortality, Simavi and knowledge institute TNO teamed up in an innovative project: Check2gether.

check2gether

Our life-saving innovation

Check2gether brings antenatal care into the heart of the community to save lives at birth. We combine a non-invasive testing kit and smart phone app that any community health worker can use to identify high-risk pregnancies. The app immediately displays easy-to-read test results and gives advice for treatment or referral.

Healthy pregnancies and safe deliveries

This transparent diagnosis, combined with peer-group ANC sessions, will motivate pregnant women to make healthier choices and demand better services. The database linked to the app keeps track of results and measures impact nationwide. Together these form a powerful tool to convince the Government of Ghana to further implement this
life-saving innovation, which costs less than $8 per pregnancy, across the country.

You can download the infographic of check2gether here.

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