"To assist countries in their efforts to improve maternal health and reduce maternal mortality, the World Bank is publishing two volumes: Investing in Maternal Health: Learning from Malaysia and Sri Lanka, and Reducing Maternal Mortality: Learning from Bolivia, China, Egypt, Honduras, Indonesia, Jamaica, and Zimbabwe. These two books offer success stories in improving health and reducing maternal mortality in a range of developing countries. The first book is based on the experiences of Malaysia and Sri Lanka during the past five to six decades. The second book discusses the more recent experiences of Bolivia, China (Yunnan), Egypt, Honduras, Indonesia, Jamaica, and Zimbabwe. These nine countries have made important strides in improving maternal health, and these two books outline what worked and what did not"
This publication identifies three components of an effective strategy to reduce maternal mortality rates: a) The existence of an extensive midwifery cadre which is well trained, autonomous, and embedded in the referral system; b) Adequate facilities for institutional deliveries, and c) An implemented strategy to support widespread access to these services. The importance of access to care and services is stressed
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