In this week's PLOS Medicine, Sabine Gabrysch from the University of Heidelberg, Germany and colleagues draw upon a literature review, expert survey, and consensus method to recommend new signal functions to monitor and track facilities' provision of routine and emergency newborn care.
While there are currently several indicators of emergency obstetric care (EmOC) that can track and monitor a health service's capacity to respond to important obstetric complications, there are none for most areas of emergency newborn care nor for routine non-emergency care of mothers and newborns.
The authors say that their new recommended ways of tracking quality of newborn care "will contribute to improving the quality of maternal and newborn care in low- and middle-income countries, helping to meet Millenium Development Goals 4 and 5."
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Gabrysch S, Civitelli G, Edmond KM, Mathai M, Ali M, et al. (2012) New Signal Functions to Measure the Ability of Health Facilities to Provide Routine and Emergency Newborn Care. PLoS Med 9(11): e1001340. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001340