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International Health

September 17, 2013

LiST Now Estimates Family Planning’s Effect on Maternal and Child Health

New Lives Saved Tool (LiST) Innovations and Applications published in BMC Public Health Supplement

For nearly a decade, leading public health organizations across the globe have relied on LiST for estimates on the potential effect of scaling up maternal and newborn health interventions. As demand for LiST has grown, researchers led by faculty at the Johns Hopkins Department of International Health have continually expanded the tool’s capabilities. Originally limited to community-based interventions and under-five mortality, estimates on the impact of interventions on birth outcomes and stillbirths, maternal mortality, and pneumonia and diarrhea incidence have been incorporated. In response to ongoing demand from the field, LiST’s latest innovation links family planning to birth risks and newborn mortality.

In a BMC Public Health supplement, articles present research and analyses linking family planning and contraceptive prevalence to birth risks, such as mother’s age, and birth outcomes, such as mortality. For example, articles look at global changes in contraceptive prevalence and the distribution of high-risk births, and the effect of births intervals on infant mortality. The supplement also includes two sections on the continued refinement and application of LiST. One section presents meta-analyses estimating the impact of interventions on maternal, neonatal and mortality among children aged 1-59 months. Another covers updated methods and assumptions in LiST and describe uses and evaluations of the LiST model.

The supplement was edited by Neff Walker, senior scientist, International Health. Authors are based at universities and organizations from around the world, including the World Health Organization, The Futures Group, Johns Hopkins, and Aga Khan University. The expanded set of capabilities now run on the policy modeling tool Spectrum and is can be download for free.

The Lives Saved Tool in 2013: new capabilities and applications, BMC Public Health, is open access and available now. Look for new application of the tool estimating best-case scenarios for reaching 2035 Millennium Development goals—set to be released September 20 by the Lancet.

The Lives Saved Tool in 2013: new capabilities and applications. BMC Public Health. Volume 13 Supplement 3. Edited by Neff Walker. Open Access.

Contact for the Department of International Health: Brandon Howard at 410-502-9059 or