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Launch of “Linda Afya ya Mama na Mtoto” project in Kenya

On June 4, 2013 thousands of residents of Kakamega County, Kenya attended the program launch for the “Linda Afya ya Mama na Mtoto” project.  Colorful dances and theater performances were a perfect initiation for this exciting and innovative project aimed at improving maternal and newborn health and nutrition throughout the region.setting2

The Linda Mama project, as it is nicknamed, is led by the Micronutrient Initiative, and combines the community organizing experience of the African Medical Research Foundation (AMREF) with facility-based quality improvement programs initiated by the Kenyan Ministry of Health and PRONTO.  Through these partnerships, the Linda Mama team hopes to decrease the extremely high infant and maternal mortality rates experienced in this region.  To accomplish this, program will focus on several contributing factors to maternal and neonatal mortality.

First, AMREF will work to develop and strengthen community units in intervention communities.  Through this project, community health workers will be equipped with messages encouraging pregnant mothers to receive antenatal, delivery and postnatal care at local facilities. Community health workers will also receive training in promoting essential nutrition actions for pregnancy and early childhood.IMG_9767

To improve the quality of care when mothers arrive at facilities, the Ministry of Health (MOH) will roll out a five-day comprehensive maternal and newborn care training course.  This course will cover all components of care from antenatal care to postnatal care and family planning.  The aim of this program is to improve provider knowledge of evidence-based medicine and improve the quality of care.people2

Finally, PRONTO will use its innovative low-cost, highly-realistic simulation training program to ensure the gains in knowledge and skill gained through the MOH training program translate into action.  PRONTO anticipates rolling out trainings for health care workers at intervention facilities in Mumias, Kakamega Central, Navakholo and Matungu in October 2013.

The PRONTO team has been hard at work in Kakamega County since March of this year preparing for the roll out and initiation of this project.  Stay tuned for more exciting updates as PRONTO’s activities in Kenya expand.people16

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