Evidence for Action
Saving Lives of Mothers and Babies in Ethiopia

The Ethiopian Government is committed to improving the standard of maternal and child health within Ethiopia.

Evidence for Action | Ethiopia (E4A) is supporting the Federal Ministry of Health to develop a Maternal Death Surveillance and Response system, which is an important tool to identify and prioritise problem areas, and thereby facilitate effective action.

This provides local data to inform evidence-based decision-making and improvements in quality of care at all levels. The system is supported by a wider enabling environment within health and social policy, medical education, and communities.

MDSR National Guidelines were launched in May 2013, in both Amharic and English. They describe the structure of the overall MDSR system in Ethiopia and includes details of responsibilities and accountability emphasising the need for a ‘no blame’ culture. They are now being distributed to hospitals and health centre facilities across the country, accompanied by supportive training.

In 2014, E4A will continue to provide technical support to the National Task Force. Moving from training and implementation phase to action in response to maternal death at national level is also planned.

Challenges include:
• Identifying deaths in the community where most births take place
• Encouraging a 'no blame' culture so that lessons can be learnt
• Managing the legal environment to encourage reporting of deaths
• Ensuring appropriate actions are delivered based on the evidence from the reviews

Dr Atnafu Getachew is the Country Director for the E4A Country Team.
More information on the programme can be found on the Evidence for Action website.

E4A Ethiopia Technical Support Team

Dr Ruth Lawley; Clinical Technical Adviser
Joanna Busza; Community Technical Adviser

University of Aberdeen:
Professor Wendy Graham; Technical Support Unit Lead
Jacqui Bell; Monitoring and Evaluation
David Sullivan; Management and Governance
Dr Katherine Richie; Administration