Equitable approach the best way to rapidly increase overall maternal and child health coverage

The first ever global study to examine how changes in health inequality are related to overall coverage of maternal and child health interventions has shown that the countries making the most rapid progress in increasing maternal and child health coverage are those with programmes which most effectively address the needs of the poorest women and children in a population.

All interventions are likely to reach people who are better-off. However, in countries where interventions have been promoted for several years, increases in coverage are generally associated with reduced inequalities. Countries making the fastest progress in increasing health coverage were those which prioritised the poorest groups.

According to lead author Professor Cesar Victora, of Universidade Federal de Pelotas in Brazil, "[There are concerns that] the present focus on overall progress in coverage and might contribute to increasing [health] inequalities. Our analyses confirm the importance of taking equity into account when assessing overall progress in coverage at country level."

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Women's group support can improve birth outcomes

Mar 07, 2010

Community support groups can reduce neonatal mortality, and lower rates of maternal depression-provided that the population coverage is wide enough and the programmes are appropriately designed. These are ...

Recommended for you

Patient-centered medical homes reduce costs

10 hours ago

The patient-centered medical home (PCMH), introduced in 2007, is a model of health care that emphasizes personal relationships, team delivery of care, coordination across specialties and care settings, quality ...

New mums still excessively sleepy after four months

11 hours ago

(Medical Xpress)—New mums are being urged to be cautious about returning to work too quickly, after a QUT study found one in two were still excessively sleepy four months after giving birth.

It's time to address the health of men around the world

12 hours ago

All over the world, men die younger than women and do worse on a host of health indicators, yet policy makers rarely focus on this "men's health gap" or adopt programs aimed at addressing it, according to an international ...

User comments