South Africa is faced with the enormous task of providing treatment, care and support to more than 5.3 million people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) and their family members. Maternal mortality in South Africa is high, up to three times the average relative to other middle-income countries. From 2005 to 2007, there was also an increase of 20.1% in the number of maternal deaths compared to the 2002–2005 period. The top causes of maternal death in South Africa are AIDS, complications of hypertension, obstetric hemorrhage and sepsis, which are all avoidable and treatable conditions. In addition, in those mothers with HIV, maternal mortality is five times higher than non-HIV infected mothers and nearly 75% of deaths of HIV-infected mothers occurred in the week after childbirth.
To address these dire statistics, the Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (MCHIP) focuses on HIV as the major cause of maternal mortality in South Africa, and does so through an integrated approach to HIV/AIDS and maternal and child health focused on integration and postnatal follow up, including:
• Strengthening services for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT);
• Providing technical support, training and input for male circumcision (MC) analyses and policy as a start to a possible roll-out of high-quality, safe medical MC service delivery;
• Expanding the roll-out of cervical cancer prevention training and services targeting HIV-positive women;
• Disseminating national HIV/AIDS-related guidelines;
• Scaling up the Standards-Based Management and Recognition approach to improve quality of PMTCT services; and
• Supporting the Training and Information Monitoring Systems.
The Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (MCHIP) is the USAID Bureau for Global Health’s maternal, neonatal and child health (MNCH) program. MCHIP supports global programming in MNCH, immunization, family planning, malaria and HIV/AIDS, and strongly encourages opportunities for integration. Cross-cutting technical areas include water, sanitation, hygiene, urban health and health systems strengthening.
MCHIP brings together a partnership of organizations with demonstrated success in reducing maternal, newborn and child mortality rates and malnutrition. Each partner is taking the lead in developing programs around specific technical areas. Jhpiego is the Prime on MCHIP, leading a coalition of the following partners: JSI, Save the Children, PATH, JHU/IIP, Broad Branch, PSI and Macro International.
For more information about MCHIP, see full MCHIP description on this Web site or visit www.mchip.net.
For nearly 40 years, Jhpiego, (pronounced "ja-pie-go"), has empowered front-line health workers by designing and implementing simple, low-cost, hands-on solutions that strengthen the delivery of health care services, following the household-to-hospital continuum of care. We partner with community- to national-level organizations to build sustainable, local capacity through advocacy, policy and guidelines development, and quality and performance improvement approaches.
For more information about Jhpiego, visit www.jhpiego.org.