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  • Prevalence and correlates of low serum calcium in late pregnancy: A cross sectional study in the Nkongsamba Regional Hospital; Littoral Region of Cameroon

    Ajong, AB; Kenfack, B; Ali, IM; Yakum, MN; Telefo, PB (Public Library of Science, 2019-11-07)
    Introduction Women from low and middle income countries are generally more likely to have sub-optimal calcium intake. The objective of this study was to assess serum calcium disorders and correlates in late pregnancy. Methods We conducted from December 2018 to April 2019, a cross-sectional hospital-based study targeting pregnant women in late pregnancy in the Nkongsamba Regional Hospital. Data were collected by measurement of parameters (weight, height, blood pressure and foetal birthweight), administration of a semi-structured questionnaire and analysis of blood samples collected from each participant. Absorption spectrophotometry was used to measure serum calcium and albumin concentrations and corrected serum calcium calculated from the Payne’s equation. With a statistical significant threshold set at p-value = 0.05, the odds ratio was used as a measure of the strength of association between hypocalcaemia and maternofoetal variables. Results We enrolled a total of 354 consenting participants with a mean age of 27.41±5.84 years. The prevalence of hypocalcaemia in late pregnancy was 58.76 [53.42–63.90]%. The rate of calcium supplementation in pregnancy was 57.63[52.28–62.80]% with a mean duration of supplementation of 3.69±1.47 months. When controlled for marital status, age, level of education, and gestational age at delivery, pregnant women with systolic blood pressures below 130 mmHg were significantly less likely to have hypocalcaemia than their counterparts with higher systolic blood pressures (Adjusted Odds Ratio = 0.41[0.18–0.89], p-value = 0.020). No statistically significant associations were found between diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, foetal birth weight and hypocalcaemia. Conclusion Hypocalcaemia in late pregnancy is highly prevalent (59%) among women accessing reproductive services at the Nkongsamba Regional Hospital. There is also a wide gap in calcium supplementation compared to World Health Organization recommendations. Hypocalcaemia is significantly associated to higher systolic blood pressure in pregnancy. Systematic calcium supplementation and consumption of high calcium containing locally available meals should be encouraged.
  • Maternal health after Ebola: unmet needs and barriers to healthcare in rural Sierra Leone

    Elston, JWT; Danis, K; Gray, N; West, K; Lokuge, K; Black, B; Stringer, B; Jimmisa, AS; Biankoe, A; Sanko, MO; et al. (Oxford University Press, 2019-11-07)
    Sierra Leone has the world’s highest estimated maternal mortality. Following the 2014–16 Ebola outbreak, we described health outcomes and health-seeking behaviour amongst pregnant women to inform health policy. In October 2016–January 2017, we conducted a sequential mixed-methods study in urban and rural areas of Tonkolili District comprising: household survey targeting women who had given birth since onset of the Ebola outbreak; structured interviews at rural sites investigating maternal deaths and reporting; and in-depth interviews (IDIs) targeting mothers, community leaders and health workers. We selected 30 clusters in each area: by random GPS points (urban) and by random village selection stratified by population size (rural). We collected data on health-seeking behaviours, barriers to healthcare, childbirth and outcomes using structured questionnaires. IDIs exploring topics identified through the survey were conducted with a purposive sample and analysed thematically. We surveyed 608 women and conducted 29 structured and 72 IDIs. Barriers, including costs of healthcare and physical inaccessibility of healthcare facilities, delayed or prevented 90% [95% confidence interval (CI): 80–95] (rural) vs 59% (95% CI: 48–68) (urban) pregnant women from receiving healthcare. Despite a general preference for biomedical care, 48% of rural and 31% of urban women gave birth outside of a health facility; of those, just 4% and 34%, respectively received skilled assistance. Women expressed mistrust of healthcare workers (HCWs) primarily due to payment demanded for ‘free’ healthcare. HCWs described lack of pay and poor conditions precluding provision of quality care. Twenty percent of women reported labour complications. Twenty-eight percent of villages had materials to record maternal deaths. Pregnant women faced important barriers to care, particularly in rural areas, leading to high preventable mortality and morbidity. Women wanted to access healthcare, but services available were often costly, unreachable and poor quality. We recommend urgent interventions, including health promotion, free healthcare access and strengthening rural services to address barriers to maternal healthcare.
  • Does the presence of conflict affect maternal and neonatal mortality during Caesarean sections?

    Gil Cuesta, J; Trelles, M; Naseer, A; Momin, A; Ngabo Mulamira, L; Caluwaerts, S; Guha-Sapir, D (International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, 2019-09-21)
    Introduction: Conflicts frequently occur in countries with high maternal and neonatal mortality and can aggravate difficulties accessing emergency care. No literature is available on whether the presence of conflict influences the outcomes of mothers and neonates during Caesarean sections (C-sections) in high-mortality settings. Objective: To determine whether the presence of conflict was associated with changes in maternal and neonatal mortality during C-sections. Methods: We analysed routinely collected data on C-sections from 17 Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) health facilities in 12 countries. Exposure variables included presence and intensity of conflict, type of health facility and other types of access to emergency care. Results: During 2008–2015, 30,921 C-sections were performed in MSF facilities; of which 55.4% were in areas of conflict. No differences were observed in maternal mortality in conflict settings (0.1%) vs. non-conflict settings (0.1%) (P = 0.08), nor in neonatal mortality between conflict (12.2%) and non-conflict settings (11.5%) (P = 0.1). Among the C-sections carried out in conflict settings, neonatal mortality was slightly higher in war zones compared to areas of minor conflict (P = 0.02); there was no difference in maternal mortality (P = 0.38). Conclusions: Maternal and neonatal mortality did not appear to be affected by the presence of conflict in a large number of MSF facilities. This finding should encourage humanitarian organisations to support C-sections in conflict settings to ensure access to quality maternity care.
  • Lassa fever in pregnancy with a positive maternal and fetal outcome: A case report.

    Agboeze, J; Nwali, MI; Nwakpakpa, E; Ogah, OE; Onoh, R; Eze, J; Ukaegbe, C; Ajayi, N; Nnadozie, UU; Orji, ML; et al. (Elsevier, 2019-08-26)
    BACKGROUND: The signs and symptoms of Lassa fever are initially indistinguishable from other febrile illnesses common in the tropics and complications of pregnancy. Surviving Lassa fever during pregnancy is rare. Only few cases have been documented. The antiviral drug of choice is ribavirin. CASE DESCRIPTION: A 25-year-old multigravida farmer with fever who was initially thought to have malaria in pregnancy at 29 weeks gestation. Further changes in her clinical state and laboratory tests led to a confirmation of Lassa fever. The Liver enzymes were markedly deranged and the packed cell volume was 27%. She commenced on ribavirin and subsequently was delivered of a live male neonate who was RT PCR negative for Lassa fever virus. Her clinical state improved, repeat RT PCR on day 15 was negative and she made full recovery. DISCUSSION: The case reported had similar clinical features of fever and abdominal pain and resulted in the initial diagnoses of Malaria in pregnancy. When she failed to respond to antimalarial and antibiotics treatments, a strong suspicion of viral hemorrhagic fever was made. At this time the patient was in advanced stage of the disease with bleeding from vagina and puncture sites. On the third day of admission she was delivered of a live male neonate who remained negative after 2 consecutive RT PCR tests for Lassa fever virus. Lassa fever carries a high risk of death to the fetus throughout pregnancy and to the mother in the third trimester. Mothers with Lassa fever improved rapidly after evacuation of the uterus by spontaneous abortion, or normal delivery. She was clinically stable following delivery. Her laboratory investigations were essentially normal. Throughout her management transmission based precautions were observed. None of the six close contacts developed symptoms after been followed up for 21 days. CONCLUSION: This report adds to the body of literature that individuals can survive Lassa fever during pregnancy with good maternal and fetal outcome.
  • The epidemiology of rape and sexual violence in the platinum mining district of Rustenburg, South Africa: Prevalence, and factors associated with sexual violence.

    Steele, SJ; Abrahams, N; Duncan, K; Woollett, N; Hwang, B; O'Connell, L; van Cutsem, G; Shroufi, A (Public Library of Sciences, 2019-07-31)
    BACKGROUND: Estimates for the prevalence of rape and other forms of sexual violence (SV) vary in South Africa. This survey aimed to provide clarity by quantifying the prevalence of SV (forced sex or sexual acts) by 1) sexual partners, and 2) non-partners, and to describe factors associated with these outcomes among women (18-49 years) living in Rustenburg Municipality. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a cluster-randomized household survey (November-December 2015). Women were asked about their experiences of SV, associated attitudes and behaviours, and access to services. Logistic regression was used to determine factors associated with partner and non-partner SV. RESULTS: Of eligible households, 83·1% (1700/2044) participated. Of 966 women invited, 836 participated (86·5%). Average age of participants was 31.6 years (95%CI: 30·9, 32·4) with 45% having completed at least secondary school, and 60% unemployed or looking for work. Lifetime prevalence of SV was 24.9% (95%CI: 21·7-28·5), reaching 9.0% (95% CI: 6·6-12·1) by age 15. Almost one third told no one of their SV experiences. Factors related to financial dependence were associated with SV by a partner. History of termination of pregnancy increased the likelihood of SV by a non-partner as an adult. Women who experienced SV in childhood or as an adult were more likely to experience SV from a different type of perpetrator than those who did not. CONCLUSIONS: We found a high prevalence of SV, including during childhood, in this setting, with limited access to care. This and the high morbidity attributed to SV calls for increased service provision.
  • Acceptability and utilization of a lipid-based nutrient supplement formulated for pregnant women in rural Niger: a multi-methods study

    Isanaka, S; Kodish, SR; Mamaty, AA; Guindo, O; Zeilani, M; Grais, RF (BioMed Central, 2019-07-01)
    Background In food insecure settings, it may be difficult for pregnant women to meet increased nutritional needs through traditional diets. A promising new strategy to fill nutrient gaps in pregnancy involves the provision of lipid-based nutrient supplements (LNS). We aimed to assess the acceptability and utilization of a 40 g LNS formulation (Epi-E) with increased micronutrient content relative to the recommended daily allowance among pregnant women in rural Niger. Methods We conducted a two-part, multi-methods study among pregnant women presenting to antenatal care in Madarounfa, Niger during two periods (Ramadan and non-Ramadan). Part 1 included two LNS test meals provided at the health center, and Part 2 included a 14-day home trial to simulate more realistic conditions outside of the health center. Open- and closed-ended questions were used to assess organoleptic properties of Epi-E using a 5-point hedonic scale after the test meals, as well as utilization and willingness to pay for Epi-E after the 14-day home trial. Results Participants consumed more than 90% of the test meal in both periods. Epi-E was rated highly in terms of overall liking, color, taste and smell during test meals in both periods (median 5/5 for all); only time, mode and frequency of consumption varied between Ramadan and non-Ramadan periods in observance of daily fasting during the holy month. Conclusion Epi- E, a 40 g LNS formulation with increased micronutrient content, was highly acceptable among pregnant women in rural Niger, and utilization was guided by household and individual considerations that varied by time period. This formulation can be further tested as a potential strategy to improve the nutritional status of pregnant women in this context.
  • Reproductive health in humanitarian settings in Lebanon and Iraq: results from four cross-sectional studies, 2014-2015.

    Balinska, MA; Nesbitt, R; Ghantous, Z; Ciglenecki, I; Staderini, N (BMC, 2019-06-10)
    BACKGROUND: Reproductive health is an important component of humanitarian response. Displaced women need access to family planning, antenatal care, and the presence of a skilled birth attendant at delivery. Since the beginning of the Syrian conflict in 2011, Lebanon and Iraq have been hosting large numbers of refugees, thereby straining local capacities to provide these services. In order to identify salient health needs, Médecins Sans Frontières conducted a survey in several sites hosting refugees and internally displaced persons across the region. Here we describe the reproductive health profile of Syrian refugees, Iraqi displaced persons, and vulnerable Lebanese and their use of services. METHODS: We conducted four cross-sectional surveys in 2014-2015 in two sites in Lebanon and two sites in Iraq. Depending on the site, two-stage cluster sampling or systematic sampling was intended, but non-probability methods were employed at the second stage due to implementation challenges. We collected information on overall health (including reproductive health) and demographic information from heads of households on the basis of a standardized questionnaire. Pearson chi-square tests were used to compare proportions, and generalized linear models were used to calculate odds ratios with regard to risk factors. All analyses were performed using the survey suite of commands in Stata version 14.1. RESULTS: A total of 23,604 individuals were surveyed, including 5925 women of childbearing age. Overall, it was reported that 7.5% of women were currently pregnant and 12.8% had given birth within the previous 12 months. It was reported that pregnancy was unplanned for 57% of currently pregnant women and 66.7% of women who had delivered in the previous year. A slight majority of women from both groups had accessed antenatal care at least once. Amongst women who had delivered in the previous year, 84.5% had done so with a skilled birth attendant and 22.1% had had a cesarean section. Location and head of household education were predictors of unplanned pregnancy in multivariable analysis. Head of household education was also significantly associated with higher uptake of antenatal care. CONCLUSIONS: Considering the large number of pregnant women and women having recently delivered in these settings, addressing their sexual and reproductive health needs emerges as a crucial aspect of humanitarian response. This study identified unmet needs for family planning and high cesarean section rates at all sites, suggesting both lack of access to certain services (contraception, antenatal care), but also over-recourse to cesarean section. These specific challenges can impact directly on maternal and child health and need today to be kept high on the humanitarian agenda.
  • Breast Tuberculosis in Women: A Systematic Review

    Quaglio, G; Pizzol, D; Isaakidis, P; Bortolani, A; Tognon, F; Marotta, C; Di Gennaro, F; Putoto, G; Olliaro, P (American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2019-05-20)
    Breast tuberculosis (TB) is rarely reported and poorly described. This review aims to update the existing literature on risk factors, clinical presentations, constitutional symptoms, diagnostic procedures, and medical and surgical treatments for breast TB. In all, 1,478 cases of breast TB were collected. Previous history of TB was reported in 19% of cases. The most common clinical appearance of the lesion was breast lump (75%). The most common associated finding was axillary lymphadenitis (33%) followed by sinus or fistula (24%). The most common symptoms were pain and fever, reported in 42% and 28% of cases, respectively. The most used diagnostic method was fine-needle aspiration cytology (32%), followed by biopsy (27%), acid-fast bacteria Ziehl–Neelsen stain (26%), culture (13%), and polymerase chain reaction (2%). These tested positive in 64%, 93%, 27%, 26%, and 58% of cases, respectively. The majority (69%) of patients received a 6-month anti-TB treatment (isoniazid, rifampicin, pyrazinamide, and ethambutol). Surgery consisted of excision in 39% of cases, drainage in 23%, and mastectomy in 5%. The great majority of patients had a positive outcome. It often mimics breast cancer, which makes it difficult to diagnose. Most patients, when diagnosed in time, respond to antitubercular therapy alone.
  • "If we miss this chance, it's futile later on" - late antenatal booking and its determinants in Bhutan: a mixed-methods study.

    Dorji, T; Das, M; Van den Bergh, R; Oo, MM; Gyamtsho, S; Tenzin, K; Tshomo, T; Ugen, S (BioMed Central, 2019-05-07)
    BACKGROUND: To achieve the Sustainable Development Goal related to maternal and neonatal outcomes, the World Health Organization advocates for a first antenatal care (ANC) contact before 12 weeks of gestation. In order to guide interventions to achieve early ANC in the lower middle-income setting of Bhutan, we conducted an assessment of the magnitude and determinants of late ANC in this context. METHODS: This was a mixed-methods study with quantitative (cross-sectional study) and qualitative (in-depth interviews with pregnant women and ANC providers) component in a concurrent triangulation design. The quantitative component retrospectively analysed the socio-demographic and clinical characteristics, and the gestational age at booking of women who were provided care for delivery or miscarriages at the three tertiary hospitals in Bhutan from May-August 2018. The qualitative component involved thematic analysis of in-depth interviews with ten women attending ANC visits and four healthcare workers involved in ANC provision. RESULTS: Among 868 women studied, 67% (n = 584) had a late booking (after 12 weeks), and 1% (n = 13) had no booking. Women with only primary education and those residing in rural areas were more likely to have a late first ANC booking. While many women achieved the recommended eight ANC visits, this did not necessarily reflect early booking. Late booking was common among multigravida women. The interviews illustrated a general understanding and recognition of the importance of early ANC. Support from peers, family and co-workers, and male participation in accessing ANC were seen as enablers. The outreach clinics (ORCs) at the primary healthcare level were an important means of reaching the ANC services to women in rural areas where geographical accessibility was a barrier. Specific barriers to early ANC were gender insensitivity in providing care through male health workers, cost/time in ANC visits, and the inability to produce the documents of the father for booking ANC. CONCLUSION: Late ANC booking was common in Bhutan, and appeared to be associated with educational, geographic, socio-cultural and administrative characteristics. A comprehensive information package on ANC needs to be developed for pregnant mothers, and the quality of ANC coverage needs to be measured in terms of early ANC booking.
  • Trends of and factors associated with cesarean section related surgical site infections in Guinea

    Delamou, A; Camara, BS; Sidibe, S; Camara, A; Dioubate, N; Ayadi, AME; Tayler-Smith, K; Beavogui, AH; Balde, MD; Zachariah, R (Page Press, 2019-05-03)
    Since the adoption of free obstetric care policy in Guinea in 2011, no study has examined the surgical site infections in maternity facilities. The objective of this study was to assess the trends of and factors associated with surgical site infection following cesarean section in Guinean maternity facilities from 2013 to 2015. This was a retrospective cohort study using routine medical data from ten facilities. Overall, the incidence of surgical site infections following cesarean section showed a declining trend across the three periods (10% in 2013, 7% in 2014 and 5% in 2015, P<0.001). Women who underwent cesarean section in 2014 (AOR: 0.70; 95%CI: 0.57-0.84) and 2015 (AOR: 0.43; 95%CI: 0.34-0.55) were less likely to develop surgical site infections during hospital stay than women operated in 2013. In the contrary, women with comorbidities were more likely to experience surgical site infection (AOR: 1.54; 95% CI: 1.25-1.90) than those who did not have comorbidities. The reductions achieved in 2014 and 2015 (during the Ebola outbreak) should be sustained in the post-Ebola context.
  • Female Genital Schistosomiasis and HIV: Research Urgently Needed to Improve Understanding of the Health Impacts of This Important Coinfection.

    O'Brien, DP; Ford, Nathan; Djirmay, AG; Calmy, A; Vitoria, M; Jensen, TO; Christinet, V (Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, 2019-04-15)
    Evidence suggests that there are important interactions between HIV and female genital schistosomiasis (FGS) that may have significant effects on individual and population health. However, the exact way they interact and the health impacts of the interactions are not well understood. In this article, we discuss what is known about the interactions between FGS and HIV, and the potential impact of the interactions. This includes the likelihood that FGS is an important health problem for HIV-positive women in Schistosoma-endemic areas potentially associated with an increased risk of mortality, cancer, and infertility. In addition, it may be significantly impacting the HIV epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa by making young women more susceptible to HIV. We call for immediate action and argue that research is urgently required to address these knowledge gaps and propose a research agenda to achieve this.
  • Removal of user fees and system strengthening improves access to maternity care, maternal and neonatal mortality in a district hospital in Lesotho

    Steele, SJ; Sugianto, H; Baglione, Q; Sedlimaier, S; Niyibizi, AA; Duncan, K; Hill, J; Brix, J; Philips, M; Van Cutsem, G; et al. (Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2018-10-26)
    Lesotho has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world. While at primary health care (PHC) level maternity care is free, at hospital level co-payments are required from patients. We describe service utilisation and delivery outcomes before and after removal of user fees and quality of delivery care, and associated costs, at St Joseph's Hospital (SJH) in Roma, Lesotho.
  • Care in crisis

    Nicholl, J; Midwife, recently completed her sixth assignment working for Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) (Mark Allen Healthcare, 2018-10-03)
  • Risk Factors for Vaginal Colonization and Relationship between Bacterial Vaginal Colonization and In-Hospital Outcomes in Women with Obstructed Labor in a Ugandan Regional Referral Hospital

    Ngonzi, J; Bebell, LM; Bazira, J; Fajardo, Y; Nyehangane, D; Boum, Y; Nanjebe, D; Boatin, A; Kabakyenga, J; Jacquemyn, Y; et al. (Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2018-09-20)
    Introduction . The proportion of women with severe maternal morbidity from obstructed labor is between 2 and 12% in resource-limited settings. Maternal vaginal colonization with group B streptococcus (GBS), Escherichia coli , and Enterococcus spp. is associated with maternal and neonatal morbidity. It is unknown if vaginal colonization with these organisms in obstructed labor women is associated with poor outcomes. Objectives . To determine whether vaginal colonization with GBS, E. coli , or Enterococcus is associated with increased morbidity among women with obstructed labor and to determine the risk factors for colonization and antibiotic susceptibility patterns. Methods . We screened all women presenting in labor to Uganda’s Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital maternity ward from April to October 2015 for obstructed labor. Those meeting criteria had vaginal swabs collected prior to Cesarean delivery and surgical antibiotic prophylaxis. Swabs were inoculated onto sterile media for routine bacterial culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Results . Overall, 2,168 women were screened and 276 (13%) women met criteria for obstructed labor. Vaginal swabs were collected from 272 women (99%), and 170 (64%) were colonized with a potential pathogen: 49% with E. coli , 5% with GBS, and 8% with Enterococcus . There was no difference in maternal and fetal clinical outcomes between those colonized and not colonized. The number of hours in labor was a significant independent risk factor for vaginal colonization (aOR 1.02, 95% CI 1.00–1.03, P = 0.04 ). Overall, 38% of GBS was resistant to penicillin; 61% of E. coli was resistant to ampicillin, 4% to gentamicin, and 5% to ceftriaxone and cefepime. All enterococci were ampicillin and vancomycin susceptible. Conclusion . There was no difference in maternal or neonatal morbidity between women with vaginal colonization with E. coli , GBS, and Enterococcus and those who were not colonized. Duration of labor was associated with increased risk of vaginal colonization in women with obstructed labor.
  • High prevalence of ESBL-positive bacteria in an obstetrics emergency hospital and neonatal care unit—Haiti, 2016

    Chaintarli, K; Lenglet, A; Beauzile, BD; Senat-Delva, R; Mabou, MM; Martino, C; Berthet, M; Wong, S; Hopman, J (The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, 2018-08-30)
    Patient colonization with extended-spectrum β-lactamase–producing gram-negative bacteria (ESBL-GNB) could serve as a potential reservoir for transmission of multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria in a hospital setting. Individuals colonized with ESBLEnterobacteriaceae are also known to be at a higher risk of ESBLGNB infection following their colonization.1 We encountered an outbreak of MDR Klebsiella pneumoniae in the neonatal care unit (NCU) of the Médecins Sans Frontiéres (MSF) obstetric emergency hospital in Port au Prince (CRUO), Haiti, between 2014 and 2015.2 As part of ongoing surveillance activities for MDR bacteria and in an effort to better target infection, prevention, and control (IPC) measures throughout the hospital, we conducted a point-prevalence survey to estimate the prevalence of colonization with ESBL-GNB and to identify risk factors for colonization with ESBL-GNB in women and neonates admitted to this hospital.
  • Delayed access to emergency obstetrical care among preeclamptic and non-preeclamptic women in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti

    Hutchinson, K; Bryant, M; Bachman DeSilva, M; Price, D; Sabin, L; Bryson, L; Jean Charles, R; Declercq, E (BMC, 2018-08-20)
    The primary objective of this comparative, cross-sectional study was to identify factors affecting delays in accessing emergency obstetric care and clinical consequences of delays among preeclamptic and non-preeclamptic women in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
  • Wishful thinking versus operational commitment: is the international guidance on priority sexual and reproductive health interventions in humanitarian settings becoming unrealistic?

    Tran, NT; Schulte-Hillen, C (BioMed Central, 2018-05-29)
    Twenty-one years ago, a global consortium of like-minded institutions designed the landmark Minimum Initial Service Package (MISP) for sexual and reproductive health (SRH) to guide national and international humanitarian first responders in preventing morbidity and mortality at the onset of chaos, destruction, and high insecurity caused by disasters or conflicts. Since then, the MISP has undergone limited change and has become an international reference in humanitarian response. This article discusses our perspectives regarding the 2018 changes to the MISP that have created division among humanitarian field practitioners, academics, advocates, and development agencies. With more than 50 pages, the new MISP chapter dilutes key guidance and messages on the most life-saving activities, leaving actors with excessive room for interpretation as to which priority activities need to be first implemented. Consequently, non-life-saving interventions may take precedence over essential ones. Insecurity, scarce human and financial resources, logistics constrains, and other limitations imposed by field reality at the onset of a crisis must be considered. We strongly recommend that an institution with the mandate, legitimacy, and technical expertise in the review of guidelines reexamines the 2018 edition of the MISP. We urge experienced first-line responders, national actors, and relevant agencies to join efforts to ensure that the MISP remains focused on a very limited set of essential activities and supplies that are pragmatic, field-oriented, and, most importantly, immediately life-saving for people in need.
  • Provision of emergency obstetric care at secondary level in a conflict setting in a rural area of Afghanistan - is the hospital fulfilling its role?

    Lagrou, D; Zachariah, R; Bissell, K; Van Overloop, C; Nasim, M; Wagma, HN; Kakar, S; Caluwaerts, S; De Plecker, E; Fricke, R; et al. (BioMed Central, 2018-01-22)
    Provision of Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care (EmONC) reduces maternal mortality and should include three components: Basic Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care (BEmONC) offered at primary care level, Comprehensive EmONC (CEmONC) at secondary level and a good referral system in-between. In a conflict-affected province of Afghanistan (Khost), we assessed the performance of an Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) run CEmONC hospital without a primary care and referral system. Performance was assessed in terms of hospital utilisation for obstetric emergencies and quality of obstetric care.
  • Care Requirements for Clients Who Present After Rape and Clients Who Presented After Consensual Sex as a Minor at a Clinic in Harare, Zimbabwe, From 2011 to 2014

    Harrison, R; Pearson, L; Vere, M; Chonzi, P; Hove, B; Mabaya, S; Chigwamba, M; Nhamburo, J; Gura, J; Vandeborne, A; et al. (Public Library of Science, 2017-09-21)
    To describe the differences between clients presenting after rape and clients who have consented to sex as a minor to an SGBV clinic in Harare, Zimbabwe, and how these differences affect their care requirements.
  • Antimicrobial-Resistant Infections Among Postpartum Women at a Ugandan Referral Hospital

    Bebell, LM; Ngonzi, J; Bazira, J; Fajardo, Y; Boatin, AA; Siedner, MJ; Bassett, IV; Nyehangane, D; Nanjebe, D; Jacquemyn, Y; et al. (Public Library of Science, 2017-04-13)
    Puerperal sepsis causes 10% of maternal deaths in Africa, but prospective studies on incidence, microbiology and antimicrobial resistance are lacking.

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