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Posts Tagged ‘reproductive health’

The Center for Reproductive Rights has released, Dignity Denied: Violations of the Rights of HIV-positive Women in Chilean Health Facilities, an in-depth investigation into the issue of discrimination against HIV positive women in Chile—specifically when seeking reproductive health services. 

In an email I received from colleagues at the Center for Reproductive Rights, they wrote:

“Over a period of six months, we spoke with 27 women in five different regions of Chile, gathering their stories. The research confirmed what we already knew from a previous study carried out by VIVO POSITIVO—women living with HIV/AIDS were frequently pressured not to become pregnant, were often scolded by healthcare workers for wanting to do so, and were sometimes pressured, coerced or forced to undergo surgical sterilization. The Center wanted to make clear that the abuse and mistreatment suffered by HIV-positive women are violations of their human rights…”

Excerpt from the report:

“In 2004, Julia received the good news that her viral load was undetectable. With this improvement in her health and after witnessing other HIV-positive women give birth to healthy, HIV-negative children, Julia and her partner decided to try for a child in consultation with a private physician. however, despite the low risk of mother-to-child transmission (mTCT), healthcare professionals repeatedly chided Julia after she became pregnant, telling her, ‘What were you thinking? Don’t you see that you are going to have a sick child?’

During the first trimester of her pregnancy, Julia began experiencing an orange-colored vaginal discharge. Concerned, she went to the hospital to have it checked out. Instead of treating her, however, hospital workers turned her away and told her to return for her regularly scheduled check-up. She was admitted to the hospital three days later, hemorrhaging and with severe abdominal pain, but she still sat untreated…”

Download the full report here

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Colleagues at the Women’s Health and Empowerment Center of Expertise at the University of California Global Health Institute are working to develop a multidisciplinary book on women’s health and empowerment.  The book will feature a set of case studies that examine the application of a specific disciplinary (or multi-discplinary) approach to addressing issues of women’s health and empowerment.  The book is being designed as a textbook to be used in undergraduate and graduate programs focused on global health, women’s studies, development studies, medical anthropology, sociology and other related disciplines. See below for the call for abstracts and case study nomination form.

Call for Abstracts

Women’s Health &Empowerment (WH&E) COE

Purpose:

The WH&E COE believes that advances in women’s health globally are impeded by poverty, limited access to educational and economic opportunities, gender bias and discrimination, unjust laws, and insufficient state accountability. These forces intersect to restrict access to vital women’s health services and the information that women need to improve their lives. By prioritizing women’s health concerns, rights, and empowerment, this COE is uniquely poised to catalyze societal-level changes that will yield sustainable improvements in health and well-being for women on a global scale.

Mission:

We envision a world in which all women and girls are empowered and healthy. Our mission is to promote justice, equity and scientific advances to reduce gender and health disparities globally. Grounded in human rights principles, our approach is interdisciplinary and transformative.  Through innovative research, education and international collaboration, we build and strengthen the capacity of the next generation of leaders in women’s health and empowerment. Our core activities focus on assuring safe motherhood, reducing violence against women, improving access to family planning and reproductive technologies, advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights, preventing HIV/AIDS, and reducing environmental threats to women’s health.

Book Project

The WH&E COE is developing a multi-disciplinary book of case studies that address the intersection of scholarship and practice in two areas: women’s health and women’s empowerment.  The book will document innovative research and programmatic efforts in the field and will strive to capture and define the latest thinking within the interlinked areas of women’s health and empowerment.  Each chapter will include a “lead-in” section written by an expert in the specific chapter discipline and incorporate one or more cases to effectively document the “real world” experience of the intervention or study.

Each abstract must consider both women’s health and empowerment. The book will be designed as a textbook in undergraduate and graduate programs focused on global health, women’s studies, development studies, medical anthropology, sociology and other related disciplines. Questions at the end of each chapter will aid in learner assessment and enhance the utility of the text in the classroom.

We are eliciting abstracts from authors interested in contributing to this multi-disciplinary textbook.  Abstracts will be screened as below and the selected authors will be asked to contribute to a chapter for this book project in consultation with its editors over the 2011-2012 calendar year.  Travel stipends for case study completion may be available.

Abstract Objectives

1.     Features innovative field research and/or programs that address the intersection of women’s health and empowerment,

2.     Facilitates students’ learning about the interrelated nature of women’s health and empowerment,

3.     Documents major lessons learned from these projects, including challenges and failures, and

4.     Includes an assessment of how the specific effort has been effective or ineffective and clearly analyzes the reasons for its success or lack thereof.

Abstract Guidelines

  • An abstract of no more than 500 words should state the premise of the case study (principal research question/hypothesis or programmatic intervention), discuss its significance, and describe the methods and data sources.
  • If the case is based on a partnership, state the manner in which partners will be included in the development of the case study.  Considering the audience for the book will be from multiple disciplines, both academics and practitioners, abstracts should avoid disciplinary jargon to promote inclusivity.
  • Your curriculum vitae (4 pages maximum)

Review Process & Criteria

All submitted abstracts will go through an initial screening review. Based upon the initial review, the author will be contacted with questions of clarification and initial feedback.  For abstracts that successfully pass the initial screening, authors may submit a “revised” abstract that incorporates requested revisions.  Each first-round selected abstract will be presented to the COE members during a mid-November 2010 meeting.  The presentations will be done either in person or electronically.  The final abstract selections will contribute significantly to the formulation of the individual book chapters.

The abstracts will be rated upon the:

1.     Innovative contribution to women’s health and empowerment,

2.     Comprehensiveness of argument and analysis,

3.     Capacity to communicate cutting edge research and/or programmatic intervention,

4.     Strength of evaluation of the documented success or failure,

5.     Inclusion of the perspectives and engagement of the population that stands to benefit from research or program, and

6.     Proposed recommendations.

Deadlines

All abstracts must be submitted by 5:00 PM (Pacific Time) on October 15, 2010.  Abstracts should be sent to Katie Gifford (giffordk@obgyn.ucsf.edu) and be in a Word document format.  If you would like to discuss a concept prior to submission, please contact Katie Gifford at the above email address.

Nomination of Case Concept

Click here for the nomination form.  Please use the form to nominate case concepts of particular interest.  The COE will follow up directly with the nominee contact to facilitate full abstract development.

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Health officials in the state of Bihar, India have decided to develop a computer software/database that will track expecting mothers, new mothers, and newborns at the village level. The goal of the project is to keep a close eye on maternal and infant mortality in each and every village in Bihar–as well as share important health information via SMS.

iGovernment

“In a bid to minimise maternal and infant mortality in the state, the Bihar government has decided to create a database of each pregnant woman and newborn babies at village level to track their health conditions and provide prenatal and postpartum care to mothers.

The data base would offer unique named-based searches on mother and children.

The data will include date of vaccination and expected date of delivery of pregnant woman. If the family of the expecting mother has any cell phone, they would be informed through SMS. In all 80,797 anganwadi sevikas across the state have been involved to make the campaign a success.

The decision to create software to track the health conditions of expecting women and infants was taken at a meeting of senior officials of the Health Department…”

Read the full story. For more on this story from FIGO, click here.

More on maternal health in Bihar:

  1. Click here to read about a recent agreement between the state government of Bihar and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in an effort to boost the public health of the state.
  2. Click here to read about PRACHAR, a Pathfinder International project that aims to disseminate family planning and reproductive health behavior change communications messages throughout 700 villages in Bihar.
  3. Click here for a recent post on conditional cash transfers to increase in-facility births in many states, including Bihar.

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This November, Sudan will host the International Conference on Reproductive Health Management. Abstracts and full papers are now being accepted across a variety of themes–and full scholarships will be provided for accepted abstracts and papers.

Themes for the conference include the following: addressing unmet need for family planning, community mobilization for reproductive health, meeting the needs of health workers, health financing, safe motherhood, women focused service delivery, social aspects of reproductive health, and reproductive health in emergency situations.

Click here for a post on the MHTF Blog with more information about the conference–and info on how to submit an abstract.

Check out the conference website here.

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Today, July 12th, marks six months since the devastating earthquake that shook Haiti earlier this year, killing more than 200,000 people.  An article, published today on Relief Web, outlines several of the components of the national health plan of the Haitian Ministry of Public Health and Population (with support from UNFPA) that was developed after the earthquake. The plan includes reviving the National School of Nurses and Midwives to reestablish midwifery training programs, working with UNICEF to set up clinics to provide skilled reproductive health services and basic emergency newborn care, supporting the Haitian Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists to improve referral systems for maternal and neonatal services, and a variety of other activities to reduce morbidity and mortality among Haiti’s most vulnerable populations.

Relief Web

Excerpt from the article:

“…Life in the temporary camps poses a number of health challenges, especially for women and girls. Living in tight, often insecure quarters with minimal access to sanitation can expose women and girls to sexual violence and other dangers.

Over the past months, UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, has provided maternal health supplies, including birthing kits to serve a population of 2 million people, as well as 22,000 hygiene kits aimed at the female population living in temporary camps, along with nearly 1,000 tents, 2000 mattresses and 17,000 solar lamps…”

Click here for the full story.

For information on UNFPA’s work in Haiti, click here.

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On July 1st, the Women Deliver team announced the top five highlights from the 2010 conference (June 7-9). See below for a summary of the conference highlights–with links to publications, videos, photos, and additional information that came out of the conference.

This post was originally posted on the Women Deliver website and is reposted on MMD with permission from Women Deliver.
conference-participants.jpg

Women Deliver 2010 Conference participants

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of the second Women Deliver global conference. To put world leaders on notice that the time for action on maternal health is now, 3,400 advocates, policymakers, development leaders, health care professionals, youth, and media from 146 countries converged on Washington, DC on June 7-9 at Women Deliver 2010. More than 800 speeches and presentations were given at the six plenaries and 120 breakout sessions.  The heads of five UN agencies, plus the Secretary-General of the United Nations, attended. Thirty countries, UN agencies, the World Bank, corporations, and foundations helped support Women Deliver. Please see below for highlights and recaps of the conference.

1. Key Statements. Read the outcome statements from the:

2. Webcasts. Watch the videos from our plenary sessions and our press conferences, and watch Hillary Clinton’s address to the Women Deliver 2010 attendees.

3. Photos. Take a look at photos from the plenary sessions, breakout sessions and other conference events, and download them at no cost.

4. Programme. Review the plenary and breakout sessions that were held at Women Deliver 2010.

5. Publications and Advocacy Tools. Visit our Knowledge Center to download publications and advocacy tools, including:

Stay tuned for our summary report on breakout sessions by theme.

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In an effort to improve the reproductive health, maternal and neonatal health, maternal and child nutrition and access/use of vaccines of the poorest 20% of Mesoamerica (which translates to 8 million people in Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Belize and the southern states of Mexico), the Gates Foundation, the Carlos Slim Health Institute, the Spanish government and the Inter-American Development Bank have formed an innovative public-private partnership–called Salud Mesoamerica 2015.

IDB (Inter-American Development Bank)

“…Salud Mesoamérica 2015 will work in partnership with the health ministries of Mesoamerican countries and in close coordination with the Mesoamerican Public Health System. This system is part of the regional integration platform known as Proyecto Mesoamérica.

In contrast to many other international programs, countries will not compete for resources under SM2015, because amounts will be allocated per country over a five-year period based on their poverty and health inequality status. Moreover, governments themselves will determine the projects that will be financed by the Initiative within the identified areas…”

Read the full story.

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