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Rethinking Approaches to Perinatal Health
A Contemporary Integrated Perinatal Health Framework

The WCHPC has developed a perinatal health framework that can contribute to improvements in MCH practice in both the public health and personal health services arenas. The intent of this framework is to increase focus on enhancing the health of women broadly, beginning well prior to the first pregnancy, between pregnancies, and during the early caregiving years. Special attention is given to issues of preconception health (e.g., health behaviors, attention to chronic disease, nutritional interventions), family planning (including unintended pregnancy, birth spacing, and ART), the role of infections in perinatal health, environmental and social issues, and health system discontinuities in health care across a woman’s lifespan.

Misra DP, Guyer B, Allston A, 2003. Integrated Perinatal Health Framework: A Multiple Determinants Model with a Life Span Approach. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 25(1): 65-75.

Perinatal Framework Diagram

Center faculty anticipate that the framework can contribute to:

  1. Refocusing of the activities of MCH agencies
  2. Development of the capacity of MCH personnel to act on current research findings 
  3. Development of new ways to assess perinatal outcomes
  4. Development of new ways to monitor perinatal health to determine whether interventions are addressing the problems

Developed initially as a working paper, this conceptual framework also is providing the underpinning for companion practice toolkits for state/local public health and clinical care professionals and programs.



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