Evaluation of the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Week in Nigeria

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Nigeria has a successfully reduced the maternal mortality ratio: in Nigeria, the maternal mortality ratio was estimated at 1,200 per 100,000 live births in 19905 and at 576 per 100.000 live births in 2013. However, there was still slow progress in Millennium development goals 4 and 5. As a result, the Maternal and Child Health Week was introduced-amongst other measures, as a priority and strategic action to accelerate the reduction of child mortality and improvement of maternal health. This intervention was primarily intended to improve access to essential, quality maternal and Child Health services, consistently with the objectives of the 2007 Integrated maternal and Child Health Strategy. The maternal and Child Health week is organized to deliver an integrated package of highly cost-effective maternal and Child Health services/interventions. These services are primarily delivered to strengthen the routine Primary health care services.

The evaluation concludes that despite its lack of impact on maternal and Child Health (no significant contribution to coverage or improved health outcomes), the programme has potential of significantly increasing coverage of key maternal and Child Health interventions through efficient social mobilization that creates awareness and participation. This can only be possible through effective partnership, adequate and timely release of funds and complete commitment by state government. The objectives and related outcomes of the maternal and Child Health week are consistent with the priorities of Nigeria, and still relevant.

The publication will provide recommendations how to further strengthen the maternal and Child Health week initiative. Also provide insight into the extent to which maternal and Child Health weeks has been adapted to meet the needs of the targeted clientele as well as Identify lessons learned, exploring what has worked well, what has not worked as well and make recommendations to strengthen the maternal and Child Health Weeks.

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