Bangladesh has made significant progress in improving maternal, newborn, and child health (MNCH) and family planning (FP) outcomes. However, maternal mortality and neonatal mortality remain very high because women in Bangladesh marry and begin bearing children early, which correlates with the highest adolescent fertility rate in Asia. Programs targeting young women and their partners could help to improve maternal and newborn health outcomes.
The Healthy Women, Healthy Families project is being jointly implemented by MSH and BRAC in selected urban areas of Gazipur City Corporation, Bangladesh. The Population Council is an evaluation partner of the project while SCOPE, a Netherlands-based organization designed the interventions.
This operations research study aims to assess the impact of a person-centered group antenatal and postnatal care (ANC-PNC) model in improving the quality and use of MNCH-FP services and information among first-time young mothers (15–24 years) and their husbands. This is a quasi-experimental pretest–posttest control group study that drew on a mixed-methods approach. Human-centered design was utilized to design the intervention and the prototype intervention was pretested with the BRAC health service providers before implementing the intervention. Five group ANC sessions and two group PNC sessions are planned over the course of a woman’s pregnancy, plus three group sessions with husbands. Each group session targets 5–6 persons to join. In each group ANC session, specific areas of pregnancy, delivery, the postnatal period, and related topics and messages will be discussed and disseminated.