National Newborn Health Program (NNHP) for Ending Preventable Newborn Deaths in Bangladesh

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The Government of Bangladesh endorsed the first National Strategy for Neonatal Health in 2009, which emphasized the importance of rapid acceleration and expansion of life-saving, cost-effective newborn health interventions. With the government in the lead, until recently, the focus for newborn care has been primarily through community-based initiatives in rural areas. However, there was a growing need to develop effective models of service delivery through Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW) infrastructure, with an emphasis on generating local evidence to overcome operational challenges.

Political commitment for reducing newborn mortality in Bangladesh was reinvigorated through “A Promise Renewed: Child Survival Call to Action” in 2013 and subsequently through various global and national consultations. Bangladesh’s participation in the Global Newborn Health Conference in April 2013 in Johannesburg also played a catalytic role by providing persuasive global evidence related to evidence-based, cost-effective interventions that could address the major causes of newborn mortality. In 2014, a comprehensive newborn care package (CNCP) was developed where essential newborn interventions – both tested and new – were defined and agreed upon and launched the following year. Civil society and academics also played a key role in accelerating progress in newborn survival in Bangladesh in concert with the government.

This is Brief 1 in a series. The other briefs are:

Brief 2: Implementing outpatient management of infections in young infants: Building the skills of union level providers
Brief 3: Facility Readiness and Initiation of Kangaroo Mother Care
Brief 4: Improving newborn care and care-seeking practices in Bangladesh through an SBCC approach
Brief 5: Newborn Commodities in Bangladesh Health System
Brief 6: Implementing the Comprehensive Newborn Care Package: Integration and Use of Data in Routine Health Information System
Brief 7: Newborn Health in Urban Bangladesh

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