High rates of maternal and prenatal mortality in developing countries indicate a crucial need for new and innovative interventions for pregnancy and neonatal care. In developing countries most women have no access to maternity services due to distance, cost, and local customs many give birth alone. High rates of neonatal and maternal tetanus and sepsis indicate a need for education and materials focused on clean birth practices.
The basic delivery kit is an inexpensive, simple kit designed to help create a clean birthing environment, particularly for home births. The contents of the delivery kit include a clean razor blade, cord ties, a small bar of soap, a plastic delivery sheet, and pictorial instructions. The delivery kit is designed for use by skilled birth attendants, family members, and women who give birth unassisted in the home. Community health workers and traditional birth attendants are oriented to the kits so they can either provide it as part of their birth delivery services or encourage families to purchase the kit for home deliveries. The kits are also designed to be sold through retail distribution outlets. By getting the right tools and approaches to communities everywhere, we’re giving more mothers and babies the chance to thrive regardless of where they are born or where they live.
To improve maternal and child health in Zambia through the provision of safe, affordable, comprehensive delivery kits, training of birth attendants by skilled medical professionals and the provision of simple lifesaving solutions. We aim to begin a cycle of health and well-being that stretches beyond the homes and the attendants we work with while also strengthening local women’s organisations and community health workers' involvement in health care.
To further demonstrate the health effects of kit use, we conducted the first cross-sectional study of single-use delivery kits in Siavonga. Severe infection is one of the top three causes of newborn deaths worldwide causing about 13% of all neonatal deaths across the globe, but in developing countries, infections can account for more than half of all neonatal deaths. A baby’s newly cut umbilical cord can be an entry point for bacteria, which can lead to infection—and potentially life-threatening sepsis. This major quantitative evaluation of the kit’s impact on preventing cord infection and puerperal sepsis Newborns of mothers who used the clean delivery kit were about 13 times less likely to develop cord infection than infants whose mothers did not use the kit. Women who used the kit were about 3 times less likely to develop puerperal sepsis than women who did not use the kit. The study results suggest that making clean delivery kits available through government health clinics, markets, private pharmacies, or other commercial channels could likely help reduce rates of infection.