Scaling up best practices in essential obstetric, neonatal care and family planning in Yemen

© 2009 Micah Albert, Courtesy of PhotoshareDr. Salwa Bitar, Extending Service Delivery Project & Thada Bornstein, Bornstein & Associates

September 2011 

The Context

Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the Middle East, ranking low in nearly all health and socioeconomic indicators. It suffers from an infant mortality rate of 51 per 1000 live births, a neonatal mortality rate of 29 per 1000 births and a maternal mortality rate of 365 per 100,000.  Yemeni women have a low contraceptive prevalence rate (23%) and a high fertility rate (5.0 in 2006).

A Ministry of Health (MOH) country team, led by the Secretary General, partnered with the Extending Service Delivery project (ESD) and its Yemen project, Basic Health Services (BHS), to introduce and scale up a package of essential obstetric and neonatal care and immediate postpartum family planning to reduce maternal and neonatal mortality. The team agreed to use the improvement collaborative approach to introduce this package at demonstration sites before scaling it up. 

The Process and Experience

Preliminary Phase: Forming the Change Coordination Team