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Respectful Maternal Care

Respectful Maternal Care Overview

Despite advances in maternal health, ensuring women have skilled care during delivery remains a challenge.  Emerging evidence indicates one reason for underutilization of skilled delivery care is that women experience disrespect and abuse (D&A) during childbirth in facilities. Disrespect and abuse includes physical abuse, non-confidential care, non-consented care, non-dignified care, abandonment/neglect, discrimination, and unfair requests for payment.  To learn more about manifestations of disrespect and abuse see the TRAction commissioned Landscape Analysis by Bowser and Hill (2010).

TRAction supports efforts to promote respectful maternal care in the following areas, click on the links to learn more:

TRAction is currently supporting research related to D&A in Tanzania, Kenya, and Guatemala. Click on the project tabs below for more on these projects.

 

Research Projects

Addressing Disrespect and Abuse in Kenya

Photo of Kenyan Woman carries water, Photoshare
Addressing Disrespect and Abuse in Kenya

An award was made to Population Council in February 2011 to fund implementation research on disrespect and abuse during facility-based childbirth in Kenya. The purpose of the research is to document the manifestations and prevalence of disrespect and abuse in facilities and to design, test and evaluate an approach for reducing the problem. The research aims to promote respectful maternal care (the converse of disrespectful and abusive care) so demand for skilled delivery care increases and the quality of services rendered improves.

 

Addressing Disrespect and Abuse in Tanzania

Photo of Mothers and babies at Kibaoni Health Center, Photoshare
Addressing Disrespect and Abuse in Tanzania

An award was made in February 2011 to fund implementation research on disrespect and abuse during facility-based childbirth in Tanzania. The purpose of the research is to document the manifestations and prevalence of disrespect and abuse in facilities and to design, test and evaluate an approach for reducing the problem. The research aims to promote respectful maternal care (the converse of disrespectful and abusive care) so demand for skilled delivery care increases and the quality of services rendered improves.

Exploring Disrespect and Abuse in Guatemala

Photo of Indigenous midwives in Guatemala, Photoshare
Exploring Disrespect and Abuse in Guatemala

While socioeconomic status and place of residence are considered the main factors for underutilization of modern health care in Guatemala, some argue these two factors alone do not fully explain ethnic disparities in women’s use of maternal health services. In order to explain some of these diferences, disrespect and abuse in the exchanges between health care providers and patients is a recent issue that demands to be further explored, among the indigenous population in Guatemala.

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