Maternal & Newborn Health
Sarhar Yamar survived postpartum hemorrhage, and now holds her daughter, thanks to good medical care. According to her nurse, “Without the training, I would not have been able to save Sarhar. In my village I can say, I saved the patient’s life. I am very proud.”
Pathfinder strengthens the skills of providers, like this Community Health Extension Worker at the Charanchi Comprehensive Health Center in Nigeria, so they can deliver quality prenatal care, skilled delivery, and postpartum care.
In India, an expectant mother named Munaina Devi meets with a Pathfinder-trained community health worker. Together, they discuss prenatal care and make a birth plan—deciding who will transport Munaina to a facility, who will donate blood if she needs it, etc.
In Yemen, a woman learns about healthy timing and spacing of pregnancy. Pathfinder promotes practices, such as family planning and delaying early marriage, that can protect and the health of mothers and newborns.
Pathfinder collaborates with communities to overcome delays in an emergency. For example, thanks to new transportation systems, women with obstetric complications can be sure to reach a facility in time to save their lives.
One woman dies every 90 seconds during pregnancy or childbirth. More than 10 million women a year suffer severe, long-lasting illnesses or disabilities caused by complications of pregnancy or childbirth. And with the health and wellbeing of mother and child heavily intertwined, obstetric complications account for the majority of neonatal mortality.
Throughout our history, Pathfinder has supported integrated and comprehensive services for maternal and newborn care. Our community interventions to improve healthy practices such as delaying early marriage and, promoting healthy timing and spacing of pregnancy, expanding access to contraception and family planning, and increasing the availability of prenatal care, skilled delivery, and postpartum care, are widely respected. Pathfinder’s contributions to postabortion care—both at the service delivery and community level—are globally recognized.
In recent years, Pathfinder has escalated its maternal and newborn care work, initiating programs that include training midwives and skilled birth attendants to help ensure safe pregnancies and deliveries; promoting life-saving, emergency obstetric care to address complications such as postpartum hemorrhage; and supporting engaged communities to ensure that they are aware of danger signs and can transport women to facilities where emergency care is available.
The goal of Pathfinder’s maternal and newborn work is developing a replicable continuum of care model so that mothers and their newborns have access to help and information at every point during pregnancy and childbirth—from the household to the hospital—and then safely home. Currently, Pathfinder has a range of projects dedicated to improving maternal and newborn health around the world.