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The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health

PMNCH logo white high res 500x500.jpg
Abbreviation PMNCH
Type Global Partnership
Headquarters Geneva, Switzerland
Director
Dr. Carole Presern
Website www.pmnch.org

The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (PMNCH) is an international alliance uniting the many partners in the global health community focused on improving the health of women and children around the world. PMNCH was created in 2005 to accelerate national, regional and global efforts towards achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5: internationally agreed goals and targets to reduce the under-five child mortality rate by two-thirds and maternal mortality rate by three-quarters worldwide by 2015.

It is estimated that every year roughly 350,000 women die in pregnancy or childbirth and 7.6 million children die before their fifth birthday—with 40% of these children dying within their first month of life.[1] Calling this a “preventable tragedy,” PMNCH says at least 6 million of these lives could be saved each year through better access to and integration of health interventions which are already known and affordable.[2]

The PMNCH is governed by a 25-person board comprised of prominent personalities from the health, academic, corporate and other sectors, including ministers of health, as well as representatives from each of the seven constituencies that form its membership: 1) Academic, research and teaching institutions; 2) Donors and foundations; 3) Healthcare professionals; 4) Multi-lateral agencies 5) Non-governmental organizations; 6) Partner countries; and 7) Private sector.[3] The current chair of the PMNCH Board is Dr. Julio Frenk, Dean of the Harvard School of Public Health and former minister of health of Mexico from 2000 to 2006.

Progress for Women's and Children's Health[edit]

Progress on MDGs 4 & 5[edit]

Since its inception in 2005, PMNCH, through its partners and the global health community at large, can claim to have achieved much for women’s and children’s health. This is seen through declining mortality figures as well as increased political and financial commitments to reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) around the world.

MDG 4 - Child Mortality: Mortality rates among children under five years dropped by 28% between 1990 and 2008. However, the Countdown to 2015 Initiative reports that only 19 of the 68 Countdown to 2015 (high-burden) countries are currently on track to achieve MDG 4.[4]
MDG 5 - Maternal Mortality: Since the PMNCH's creation, maternal mortality rates have declined globally and in most high-burden countries. But, as maternal mortality is declining at an average rate of 2.3% (as it has between 1990 and 2008), instead of the required 5.5%, this progress is insufficient to achieve MDG 5. In low- and middle-income countries, pregnancy and childbirth continue to claim the lives of at least 1000 women each day, amounting to around 350 000 deaths a year.[4]

More recent mortality statistics will be available when the Countdown to 2015 Initiative reports again in June 2012.

Financial and Political Commitments to Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (RMNCH)[edit]

Developed under the auspices of the United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, and facilitated by the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health, the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health and its associated Every Woman Every Child effort were launched during the UN Leaders’ Summit for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2010. Some US $40 billion was pledged towards RMNCH and the achievement of MDGs 4 and 5 to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health worldwide.[5] Governments all around the world have since joined foundations, multilateral organizations, UN agencies, private sector actors, and academic and professional associations in making further unprecedented financial and political commitments towards advancing this framework. Notably, 44 of the world’s poorest countries — among them Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Burundi — joined the Every Woman Every Child effort in September 2011 to advance the work of the Global Strategy, bringing the total number of partners in this joint effort to more than 200. These 44 countries have committed almost $11 billion of their own limited resources to improving women's and children's health. Equally, they have made many important policy and service delivery commitments, many of which have not been monetized.[6]

History[edit]

The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health was launched in September 2005 when the following prominent maternal, newborn and child health alliances joined forces: the Partnership for Safe Motherhood and Newborn Health, hosted by the World Health Organization in Geneva; the Healthy Newborn Partnership, based at Save the Children USA; and the Child Survival Partnership, hosted by UNICEF in New York.[7]

The vision and goals of the PMNCH were outlined in "The Delhi Declaration"—a landmark statement developed by participants of "Lives in the Balance: The Partnership Meeting for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health", held in New Delhi, India, April 7-9, 2005.[8] Participants included ministers and delegations from 12 national governments, UN agencies, the World Bank, foundations, national and international NGOs, professional bodies, academic institutions and civil society representatives. As well, the 2007 Conceptual and Institutional Framework noted several internationally-agreed frameworks upon which the PMNCH was based,[9] including the International Conference on Population and Development, September 1994 (ICPD, Cairo, Egypt); the Fourth World Conference on Women (FWCW, September 1995, Beijing, China) and the UN Millennium Declaration (2000) and Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (2001), adopted by World Leaders and the UN General Assembly respectively in September 2000 and 2001.

RMNCH Continuum of Care[edit]

Continuum of Care.
The first dimension of the Continuum of Care is time - from pre-pregnancy, through pregnancy, childbirth, and the early days and years of life (Figure 1. Connecting care giving across the Continuum for maternal, newborn and child health).
Continuum of Care.
The second dimension of the Continuum of Care is place - linking the various levels of home, community, and health facilities (Figure 2. Connecting care giving between households and health facilities to reduce maternal, newborn, and child deaths).

A defining feature of PMNCH's work is its focus on promoting the reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) Continuum of Care, a life-cycle approach to women’s and children’s health from pre-pregnancy through early childhood. As it addresses both time [as illustrated in Figure 1] and place [as illustrated in Figure 2], this two-dimensional framework approaches women’s and children’s health in a holistic way. The health of young women from their teenage years is brought into focus within this framework, not only highlighting their needs around reproductive health but also around education, nutrition and social support. Such attention for adolescents, young girls and women is carried through the pre-conception stage to pregnancy and childbirth. The inextricable links between maternal and newborn health call for continued attention to their care and support, with the subsequent childhood stage then forming the foundation on which adult health and life is based.[10]

Objectives & Activities[edit]

PMNCH's current Strategic Framework was approved at the end of 2011 and guides the organization's operations over the course of 2012 to 2015. In this strategic framework there is a strong focus on the recognition of the entire reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) Continuum of Care as the operational context for PMNCH’s mandate and activities.[4]

The new strategy builds on the success of PMNCH attaining, through its partners, the objectives of the 2009-11 Strategy and Workplan,[11] which contributed to major achievements in women’s and children’s health during this period, including the first-ever global consensus on packages of interventions to address the main causes of maternal, newborn and child deaths — Essential Interventions, Commodities and Guidelines for RMNCH[1] — and the development of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health.

The following three Strategic Objectives (SOs) guide the PMNCH in its work advancing the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health and supporting its associated Every Woman Every Child effort.[4]

Strategic Objective #1: Broker Knowledge and Innovation for Action[edit]

PMNCH works to increase access to and use of knowledge and innovations to enhance policy, service delivery and financing mechanisms, so as to address key constraints to achieving universal access to comprehensive, high-quality care for reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH). This work is done within the framework of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health and Every Woman Every Child effort. PMNCH also works to develop consensus among its partners on key RMNCH topics through lessons shared on success factors and constraints.[4]

Some of PMNCH's key work in this area has included the creation of the MNCH Knowledge Portal and collection of PMNCH Knowledge Summaries; the development of RMNCH Essential Interventions; a compendium of all key resources on economics and financing for reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health on the RMNCH Portal and a review published in 2011 exploring options for strengthening of the global financing architecture to better channel funding for RMNCH. PMNCH also contributes technical knowledge, through its network of partners, toward a strategic framework to guide the development of private-public projects and partnerships within the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health, hosting and supporting the Innovation Working Group (IWG) of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health. PMNCH encourages engagement with the private sector and is helping to develop a private sector engagement guide in support of the Every Woman Every Child Initiative.

Full details on PMNCH's work brokering knowledge and innovation for action can be found in the "What we do" section of the PMNCH website.[12]

Strategic Objective #2: Advocate to mobilize and align resources[edit]

PMNCH advocates for mobilizing and aligning resources and for greater engagement, leading to additional resource commitments for reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH), visibility of women’s and children’s health issues in relevant forums, and consensus on evidence-based policy development and implementation.[4]

For resource mobilization, PMNCH contributes to joint work with the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health and its associated Every Woman Every Child effort to advocate for new commitments to RMNCH and for delivery of existing commitments. PMNCH works with partners in identifying new financial, policy and service-delivery commitments from all constituencies, including the private sector. In its efforts to maintain momentum for RMNCH issues, PMNCH advocates, through events, dialogue and facilitation, to include the issue of women’s and children’s health prominently in the landscape of international politics (including the G8 and G20), economics and development. PMNCH works to build consensus by convening global, regional, national and local stakeholders to develop a consensus on evidence-based strategic priorities.[13]

Some of PMNCH's key advocacy work has included working with partners to increase G8 attention and commitment to RMNCH issues, with success when Canada introduced the G8 MNCH Muskoka Initiative. PMNCH also works with parliamentarians worldwide, including through its partners, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the Africa Health Parliamentary Network, and United Nations Population Fund to advocate for improved RMNCH at the national level and regional levels, such as at the Pan-African Parliament.[13]

Full details on PMNCH's work advocating to mobilize and align resources can be found in the "What we do" section of the PMNCH website.[13]

Strategic Objective #3: Promote accountability for results[edit]

PMNCH works to promote accountability for resources and results, leading to better information to monitor reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) results, as well as better and more systematic tracking of how resource commitments are actually allocated. Some of the PMNCH's key work in this area has included facilitating the creation and follow-up work to the Commission on Information and Accountability for Women’s and Children’s Health, which was set up to propose a framework for global reporting, oversight and accountability on women's and children's health in the wake of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health. Through 10 recommendations presented in its report Keeping Promises, Measuring Results,[14] released in May 2011, the Commission has created a system to track whether resources are spent wisely and transparently, and whether the desired results are achieved. PMNCH is using its multi-stakeholder partner platform and advocacy network to ensure that the workplan to implement the recommendations of the Commission is carried forward in collaboration with partners—including Recommendation 10, the work of the independent Expert Review Group (iERG).

In 2011, PMNCH produced a report analysing commitments to advance the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health.[15] In November 2011, the iERG requested PMNCH to produce a 2012 Report and to disseminate its findings through its member platform and advocacy network. The 2012 Report on Commitments will build on the former by also analyzing the scope and content of new commitments, assessing bottlenecks to delivery of commitments, and providing examples of best practices and constraints to accountability for women's and children's health.

Working very closely with United Nations Agencies, the World Health Organization and other PMNCH members, PMNCH has also been involved in the development of and follow-up to the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution on Maternal Mortality which was agreed in 2010.[16]

Tracking progress of countries towards the achievement of MDGs 4 and 5 has also been critical to the work of PMNCH and its members. Key to this undertaking is the Countdown to 2015 Initiative, which focuses on tracking progress of 68 priority countries which represent 97% of all global maternal and child deaths. The Secretariat of the Countdown to 2015 Initiative is supported by the PMNCH Secretariat in Geneva.

Full details on PMNCH's work promoting accountability for results can be found in the "What we do" section of the PMNCH website.[17]

Key PMNCH Publications[edit]

The following are some key publications produced by or in collaboration with PMNCH:

  • PMNCH 2011 Report on Commitments to the Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health[15]
  • 2010 Annual Report: From Hope to Action[18]
  • Investing in health for Africa: The case for strengthening systems for better health outcomes[19]
  • Taking the lead: Parliamentarians engage with maternal, newborn and child health[20]
  • Consensus for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health[21]
  • Investing in maternal, newborn and child health: The case for Asia and the Pacific[22]
  • Successful leadership: Country actions for maternal, newborn and child health[23]
  • Opportunities for Africa's newborns: Practical data, policy and programmatic support for newborn care in Africa[24]


A complete list of all publications produced by or in collaboration with PMNCH is available in the "Resources" section of the PMNCH website.

Organizational Structure[edit]

PMNCH Board[edit]

The PMNCH is governed by a 25-person board comprised of prominent personalities from the health, academic, corporate and other sectors, including ministers of health, as well as representatives from each of the seven constituencies that form its membership. The Board is responsible for overseeing the organization at a macro-level with a focus on medium- and long-term plans. It is also charged with mobilizing funds; outlining organizational policy; and establishing goals, priorities, strategies and targets for PMNCH.[25] The Board is supported by the Executive Committee, Finance Committee, the Task Team on Financing for RMNCH, and other time-limited Working Groups, as deemed appropriate.[26][27][28]

Members and Constituencies[edit]

PMNCH unites key actors working towards better reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health (RMNCH) around the world into an alliance of about 500 members from seven constituencies:[29]

  1. Academic, research and teaching institutions
  2. Donors and foundations
  3. Healthcare professionals
  4. Multi-lateral agencies
  5. Non-governmental organizations
  6. Partner countries
  7. Private sector

Details on all PMNCH members can be found using the searchable PMNCH Members Database on the PMNCH website.

Membership to PMNCH requires a commitment to reproductive, maternal, newborn, and/or child health, in accordance with the organization's guiding principles, vision and mission as described in the 2012-2015 PMNCH Strategic Framework. Partners accept the principles outlined in relevant internationally-agreed frameworks, including the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD, September 1994, Cairo, Egypt); the Fourth World Conference on Women (FWCW, September 1995, Beijing, China) and the UN Millennium Declaration and Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), adopted by the UN General Assembly in September 2000. More detailed information about PMNCH members and how to join PMNCH can be found in the "Membership" section of the PMNCH website.

Partners' Forum[edit]

The PMNCH Partners' Forum serves as a regular global platform for the renewal of commitment to the mission and purpose of PMNCH, for global high-level advocacy and for achieving broad consensus on the strategy and priorities of PMNCH. Participation at the Forum comes from all constituencies and members of PMNCH. More details about the Partners' Forum and past meetings are available on the PMNCH website.

PMNCH Secretariat[edit]

The PMNCH Secretariat is hosted and administered within the World Health Organization in Geneva and undertakes day-to-day administration of the Partnership work plan.

PMNCH Leadership[edit]

PMNCH Directors[edit]

2011-present: Dr. Carole Presern

2009-2011: Dr. Flavia Bustreo

2005-2009: Dr. Francisco Songane

Board Chairs[edit]

2010-present: Dr. Julio Frenk, Dean of the Harvard School of Public Health

2009-2010: Dr. Julian Schweitzer, Then- Acting Vice President, Human Development Network and Director, Health Nutrition and Population of the World Bank

2007-2009: Ms. Joy Phumaphi, Then- Vice President and Head of the Human Development Network at The World Bank

2005-2007: Mr. Kul Gautam, Then- Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF, Founding Chair of the Partnership Board

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2011. A Global Review of the Key Interventions Related to Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (RMNCH).. Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  2. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Fact Sheets".
  3. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Constituencies".
  4. ^ a b c d e f The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2011. Strategic Framework 2012 to 2015. Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  5. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2010. Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health. Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  6. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PRESS RELEASE: PMNCH Report 2011".
  7. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH History".
  8. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2005. The Delhi Declaration. New Delhi, India: PMNCH.
  9. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2007. Conceptual and Institutional Framework. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.
  10. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Fact Sheet: RMNCH Continuum of care".
  11. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2009. Strategy and Workplan 2009-2011. Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  12. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Strategic Objective (SO) 1: Broker Knowledge and Innovation for Action".
  13. ^ a b c The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Strategic Objective (SO) 2: Advocate to mobilize and align resources".
  14. ^ The World Health Organization. 2011. Keeping Promises, Measuring Results. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.
  15. ^ a b The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. 2011. Analysing Commitments to Advance the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  16. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "Human rights and maternal mortality".
  17. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Strategic Objective (SO) 3: Promote accountability for results".
  18. ^ Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2011. PMNCH 2010 Annual Report: From Hope to Action Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  19. ^ Harmonization for Health in Africa (consisting of WHO, World Bank, UNFPA, USAID, UNICEF, UNAIDS, JICA, the African Development Bank, in collaboration with the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health). 2011. Investing in health for Africa.
  20. ^ Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)/Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. 2010. Taking the lead: Parliamentarians engage with maternal, newborn and child health.
  21. ^ Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. 2009. Consensus for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  22. ^ Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Network for Asia and the Pacific. 2009. Investing in maternal, newborn and child health: The case for Asia and the Pacific.
  23. ^ Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. 2008. Successful leadership: Country actions for maternal, newborn and child health Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  24. ^ Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health. 2006. Opportunities for Africa's newborns: Practical data, policy and programmatic support for newborn care in Africa Geneva, Switzerland: PMNCH.
  25. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Structure"
  26. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Board and its Committee"
  27. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Task Team on Financing for RMNCH meets in London"
  28. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Governance Calendar"
  29. ^ The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. "PMNCH Constituencies"