Photo: Shafiqul Alam Kiron/Save the Children
Community health worker Zeehan holds seven-month-old Sanji in her arms while making home visits in Sylhet District, Bangladesh as part of Save the Children’s Saving Newborn Lives program that trains, supports and monitors Community Health Workers and newborn survival in Bangladesh.
The Projahnmo (Project to Advance the Health of Newborns and Mothers) trial, in rural Sylhet District, done in collaboration with USAID and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Department of International Health, aimed to provide community health education, prenatal, childbirth and postnatal care to mothers and newborns through the use of community health workers.
Bangladesh has made many successes over the last ten years to reduce newborn mortality and progress towards achieving MDG4. The development of a National Newborn Health Strategy, operational research and improvement in community based care were all important factors.
However, the rate of mortality reduction for children in the neonatal period (0-28 days) is less than half that of older children (4% versus 8.6%). More work needs to be done and community health workers have and will continue to play a role in improving conditions for newborns and mothers in rural areas of the country.
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