Health systems interventions for improving maternal health
This thematic series received funding from University of the Witwatersrand. Some articles in the series were developed in the MASCOT/WOTRO systematic review, funded by the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013; grant agreement number 282507) and NWO/Wotro (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research, WOTRO Science for Global Development). The studies included in this series of publications address maternal health from a health systems' perspective. Several elements in the intersections between maternal health and health systems are addressed. Patient-related factors, such as demand for services, and patient-provider interactions foreground the other articles in the series. Research on patient's needs and experiences provide important contextual information to the systematic mapping of interventional research on maternal health. Drawing on a large mapping of research in low-, middle- and high-income countries 2000-2012, the mapping sums the research topics addressed in maternal health and funders of this research. The publications are based on empirical research using qualitative methods, reviews of programme data, secondary analysis of population-level data from national surveys, and several systematic reviews. Taken together, the series aims to provide a coherent set of findings and analysis, which informs responses to maternal health that move assessments of service delivery or individual clinical interventions, to centre around health systems and comprehensive conceptions of women's needs.
Prof Matthew Chersich and Dr Duane Blaauw, Centre for Health Policy/MRC Health Policy Research Group, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa; and Prof Stanley Luchters, Centre for International Health, Burnet Institute, Melbourne, Australia.