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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2012 Apr;117(1):48-55. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2011.10.031. Epub 2012 Jan 26.

Community-driven impact of a newborn-focused behavioral intervention on maternal health in Shivgarh, India.

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Community Empowerment Lab, Shivgarh, India.



To assess the effect on maternal health outcomes of a community-based behavior change management intervention for essential newborn care leading to a reduction in neonatal mortality.


A cluster-randomized controlled trial involving 1 control and 2 intervention arms was conducted in Shivgarh, India, between January 2004 and May 2005. Risk-enhancing domiciliary newborn care behaviors, including those posing a concomitant risk to maternal health, were targeted through home visits and community meetings. Secondary outcomes included knowledge of maternal danger signs, self-reported complications, maternal care practices, care-seeking from trained providers, and maternal mortality ratio (MMR). The intervention arms were combined for analysis, which was done by intention to treat.


Significant improvements were observed in maternal health equity and outcomes including knowledge of danger signs, care practices, self-reported complications, and timely care-seeking from trained providers. The difference in adjusted MMR was not significant (relative risk 0.44; 95% confidence interval, 0.14-1.43; P=0.11) owing to the inadequate sample size for this outcome, but may suggest a decline in MMR given improvements in other outcomes in the causal pathway to mortality.


Community-based strategies focused on prevention and care-seeking effectively complemented facility-based strategies toward improving maternal health, while synergizing with newborn care interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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