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Elimination Of Maternal, Neonatal Tetanus Possible With Improved Access To Care

Huffington Post: Reaching Mothers to Reach Children
Folake Olayinka, Aspen New Voices fellow

“…The occurrence of neonatal tetanus is a triple failure: of vaccination services, [antenatal care (ANC)], and obstetric care. Yet India has shown by its elimination of maternal and neonatal tetanus that prevention, even in poorly served areas, is possible. … With such low ANC attendance and poor access to care in many places, the goal of maternal vaccinations and positive pregnancy outcomes remains elusive for many. … Large expansions in antenatal care coverage are still needed to provide the strong platforms to achieve and sustain maternal vaccinations and antenatal care to all pregnant women. … Providing care for the mother during pregnancy has huge implications not just for her health but also for the child she carries and her community. Many health problems in pregnant women can be prevented, detected, and treated during antenatal care by trained health workers. India is a good example of how to do just that” (9/13).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.