Maternal Survival: Improving Access to Skilled Care—A Behavior Change Approach

Through the CHANGE Project, the Manoff Group developed a framework and tools to identify behaviors related to women's use of skilled care and to increase this use during delivery and the postpartum period. Research in Kenya, Guinea and Bangladesh to test and adapt tools found that women, families, communities and providers were willing to try new practices and change behaviors that tend to increase the use of skilled care. However, for them to do so, maternal survival programs must work with them to tailor activities to local contexts and use an integrated approach that promotes new practices in households, communities and health facilities.

The Maternal Survival Toolkit is a collection of innovative tools and approaches for designing behavior change interventions to improve maternal survival. For each topic, there is a set of tools to help users design and implement effective interventions.

Seeking skilled care

Increasing women's use of skilled care during and after childbirth is the most crucial intervention to reduce maternal deaths.

Birth preparedness

Being prepared for birth can help reduce the "universal barriers" of cost, distance and transport, particularly in settings where maternal mortality is high.

Providing skilled care

The quality of maternal health services (particularly the attitudes and behavior of providers) has an important influence on women's use of skilled care.