Nine new grants to improve access to sexual and reproductive health services in Africa

Thursday, April 6, 2017 Sexual Health News
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OTTAWA, April 6, 2017 /CNW/ - To mark World Health Day, Canada's International Development

Research Centre (IDRC), Global Affairs Canada, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) are announcing nine new research grants for Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa.

This $4.5

million commitment is the result of a call for proposals from the 19 implementation research teams under this partnership. The new grants will allow nine of these teams to scale up promising interventions and address the need for family-planning education, support for adolescent mothers, and sexual and reproductive health services and information. These grants complement the partnership's existing investments in African and Canadian research teams to address the root causes of high maternal and child morbidity and mortality. 

"Effective public policy needs to be supported by sound research. These research grants will deepen our knowledge on maternal mortality, strengthen local health systems, and improve access for women to sexual and reproductive services," said Marie Claude Bibeau, Canada's Minister of International Development and la Francophonie.

"These grants will help remove bottlenecks affecting access to sexual and reproductive health services and quality of care for women in Africa," said Jean Lebel, President of Canada's International Development Research Centre.

"This investment of $4.5 million represents a next step in boosting Canada's important contributions to global health research," said Dr. Steven J. Hoffman, Scientific Director of CIHR's Institute of Population and Public Health. "As the world becomes more interdependent, we will be increasingly counting on researchers to help us uncover effective strategies for improving everyone's health, whether in Africa or Canada, and particularly for the most vulnerable among us."

Quick Facts

  • This commitment is part of a seven-year, $36 million initiative.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, approximately 550 women die every day from preventable causes related to pregnancy complications and childbirth — accounting for 66% of pregnancy and childbirth related deaths worldwide.
  • Children under the age of five in sub-Saharan Africa are also 16 times more likely to die than in high-income countries due to poor access to quality healthcare services.
  • 99% of the world's maternal death occur in developing countries.
  • Maternal mortality dropped by roughly 50% between 1990 and 2013 yet far too many pregnant women face death unnecessarily.

For more information on the new grants, see Backgrounder – Nine new grants for sexual and reproductive health in Africa.

About Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in AfricaThe Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa initiative seeks to improve maternal, newborn, and child health outcomes by strengthening health systems, using primary healthcare as an entry point. Program Overview - Maternal and Child Health in Africa.

About Canada's International Development Research Centre Part of Canada's foreign affairs and development efforts, IDRC invests in knowledge, innovation, and solutions to improve lives and livelihoods in the developing world. Bringing together the right partners around opportunities for impact, IDRC builds leaders for today and tomorrow and helps drive large-scale positive change.

About Global Affairs CanadaGlobal Affairs Canada manages Canada's diplomatic and consular relations, facilitates the country's international trade, and leads Canada's international development and humanitarian assistance. Global Affairs believes in the potential for development innovation to drive positive change to meet 21st century challenges. www.international.gc.ca

About the Canadian Institutes of Health ResearchAt the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) we know that research has the power to change lives. As Canada's health research investment agency, we collaborate with partners and researchers to support the discoveries and innovations that improve our health and strengthen our health care system.

Note to editors IDRC experts are available for interviews, in English and French.

BACKGROUNDER

Nine new grants for sexual and reproductive health in Africa

Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa is contributing $4.5 million in grants as part of Canada's efforts to improve maternal and child health globally. The funding is helping to scale-up promising interventions and address the need for family-planning education, support for adolescent mothers, and sexual and reproductive health services and information.

The grants will enable nine research teams to achieve the following goals:

Burkina Faso                                                         

  • Support the government implementation of free national health care for mothers and children under the age of five, approved in April 2016.Partner: Société d'études et de recherche en santé publique, Burkina Faso

Ethiopia and Mozambique

  • Improve the reporting of cause of death in the two countries through the training of health professionals, to help authorities identify gaps in health services affecting mothers and children.Partner: St. Michael's Hospital, Canada

Nigeria

  • Complement existing efforts to detect and treat perinatal depression with a special focus on adolescents. Partner: University of Ibadan, Nigeria
  • Expand the testing of home visits and educational videos in Bauchi State to include education about child-spacing and contraception.Partners: Federation of Muslim Women's Associations of Nigeria and McGill University, Canada

Tanzania

  • Train community health workers to provide family planning information and services to adolescents and women in rural areas, through the use of mobile health applications.Partners: Shirati KMT District Hospital, Tanzania and Bruyère Research Institute, Canada
  • Strengthen leadership and managerial capacities in the health facilities of Morogoro, as research has shown that gaps in these areas contribute more to mothers dying in childbirth than poverty does.Partners: Tanzanian Training Centre for International Health and Dalhousie University, Canada
  • Develop a tablet-based tool to measure quality of care and standardize the information enabling decision-makers to improve maternal and newborn health care in the Mtwara region.Partner: Ifakara Health Institute, Tanzania
  • Build the capacity to identify factors within households that influence women's decisions to seek care, to support the rural roll out of a Ugandan program to improve maternal and child health.Partners: Catholic University of Health and Allied Sciences, Tanzania and Mbarara University, Uganda

Uganda and Kenya

  • Improve efforts to reduce the deaths of children under the age of five using a gender analysis to identify incentives for women living in fragile contexts to become community health workers. Partners: BRAC International, Bangladesh and Cape Breton University, Canada

All grants must go through IDRC's grant administration process before final approval.

About Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in AfricaThe Innovating for Maternal and Child Health in Africa initiative seeks to improve maternal, newborn, and child health outcomes by strengthening health systems, using primary healthcare as an entry point. Program Overview - Maternal and Child Health in Africa.

______________________________________________________________________________A key part of Canada's aid program, IDRC supports research in developing countries to promote growth and development.

 

SOURCE International Development Research Centre



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