A rapidly growing chain of private hospitals in India are providing maternity and delivery care to poor pregnant women for less than 100 dollars.
Now, the country's poor pregnant women can give birth in Lifespring hospitals, which focus on low-income families, with comparable quality to expensive private ones.
This is an alternative to overcrowded, poorly staffed government-funded hospitals.
For one low price, as little as 90 dollars, it provides complete delivery services. This is one-third to one-half of the fees charged at other hospitals.
The first pilot hospital opened in 2005. Within a year, Lifespring grew to six hospitals.
It now has nine and will open another six by the end of 2011. Each hospital aims to be profitable after 18 months.
Till now Lifespring's staff have delivered more than 10,000 babies.
"Like many social businesses, the genesis for LifeSpring began with the simple belief, that 'there has to be a better way,'" said Anant Kumar who launched Lifespring.
The report was published online by The Lancet and Every Women, Every Child, the website for the United Nation's Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health on September 12.
It was prepared as part of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's "Every Woman Every Child" Initiative, a global strategy for improving women and children's health, launched last year. (ANI)