Recommitting to Maternal Newborn Health at WD2016

Posted on

By: Jacquelyn Caglia, Associate Director, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

The 4th Global Women Deliver Conference opened with a roaring start in Copenhagen, Denmark on Monday afternoon with more than 5,500 delegates from over 150 countries. At such an extensive global gathering, it can be difficult to choose which sessions to attend. Interested in learning more about maternal newborn health at WD2016? We’ve compiled a list of key sessions to attend throughout the week!


How Parental Depression Impacts Child Development
10:30 – 12:00 in Room B5-2
Little consideration is given to the mental health of young women during and after pregnancy. This session will examine the cultural factors that shape this norm and develop strategies to strengthen the psychological aspects of perinatal health care services in order to increase the personal agency of young women.

Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission on the Edge of an AIDS-Free Generation
13:30 – 14:30 in Room C1-M3
While progress has been made toward the goal of reducing new pediatric infections by 90%, HIV continues to be a leading cause of under-5 and maternal mortality. This session will address the challenges and solutions for achieving an AIDS-free generation.

Private and Public Partnerships to Tackle Gestational Diabetes – Sponsored by Novo Nordisk
13:30 – 14:30 in Room B3-1
Nearly 830 women die every day in relation to pregnancy and childbirth—75% of these cases consist of preventable complications that can be linked to diabetes. Testing for diabetes during pregnancy is crucial to improving mother and child health. PSI, JHPIEGO, and FIGO will kick off a lively debate.

Infertility: Impact, Issues, and Solutions
15:00 – 16:00 in Room B3-2
Although millions of women have an unmet need for modern contraceptives, infertility affects 15 to 25% of heterosexual couples worldwide. Speakers will address the reproductive rights issue of childlessness, which can be medically, psychosocially, and economically devastating for both women and men.

Working with Faith Leaders on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights
15:00 – 16:00 in Room C1-M3
By acknowledging sexual pleasure and mutual respect as important rights, religious leaders and faith based communities are pushing a progressive SRHR agenda. Learn how their proactive approach is preventing gender-based violence.

Whose Business Is it Anyway? Tapping Local Businesses to Improve Maternal Health – Sponsored by MSD for Mothers
15:00 – 16:00 in Room B4-5
By taking a page from the private sector playbook, healthcare providers are optimizing health outcomes for women and communities. Expert panelists will discuss successful examples of how entrepreneurs and healthcare providers are embracing business principles and market forces to deliver affordable, quality care while sustaining and growing a thriving business.


Innovations to End Preventable Preterm Birth and Stillbirth by 2030
10:30 – 12:00 in Room C1-M0
Ending preventable preterm and stillbirths by 2030 needs effective interventions and advocacy. This panel of global and country experts, as well as people personally affected by preterm and still born babies, will engage participants in role play and discussion to highlight the extent of the problem.

The Female Face of Communicable Diseases
10:30 – 12:00 in Room B3-2
When it comes to communicable disease, women are both the recipients and providers of care. Learn about the different individual, community, and programmatic solutions—particularly those spearheaded by women—that are increasing access to communicable disease services.

She Deserves Better—Innovating to End Postpartum Hemorrhage
13:30 – 14:30 in Room B4-1
Globally, we’ve made great progress in reducing postpartum hemorrhage—the leading killer of new mothers—yet much work still remains. Innovation is critical to overcoming current challenges to delivering quality PPH care and achieving SDG 3.1. Bring your thinking caps and help develop approaches to end preventable deaths caused by postpartum hemorrhage.

Investing in Community-Based Approaches to Strengthen Primary Care – Sponsored by Philips
13:30 – 14:30 in Room B4-4
The aim of this session is to highlight and discuss the importance of investing in Primary care in developing markets. This session (50 min) envisages an objective noncommercial panel discussion with moderator—starting with short statements by panel members and then moving to questions and discussion. Existing or new solutions will be part of this.

The Forgotten Challenge: Maternal and Newborn Morbidity
15:00 – 16:00 in Room B3-1
What can overburdened health systems do to reduce maternal/newborn morbidity? A young Bangladeshi midwife will share linkages between country-of-birth and newborn morbidity, while a West African physician shares his experience tackling maternal/newborn complications at a busy urban hospital.

Young People, HPV, and Cervical Cancer
15:00 – 16:00 in Room C1-M2
Stopping the spread of cervical cancer will require a new care delivery platform— one that recognizes the linkages between different health needs and services. Learn how the Ebola epidemic in West Africa provided valuable insight on integrated programming and how HPV vaccination of adolescent girls can help reach this under-served population.

Breaking the Silence Around Missteps, Mistakes, and Failures
15:00 – 16:00 in Room B4-4
The public health community is risk averse. Funders see initiatives that falter as bad investment decisions. Researchers write papers about successful interventions, not the unsuccessful ones. Implementers cover up failures, which only leads to repeated mistakes. It’s time to for us to embrace failure for what it is—an invaluable learning experience.


Compassionate and People-Centered Care: Why We Need It
13:30 – 14:30 in Room C1-M0
Respectful maternity care is a woman’s right, not a luxury. Ensuring that women are not only satisfied with their care but have a positive birth experience can be the catalyst to ensuring they survive and thrive.

Breaking Barriers to Breastfeeding: Supporting Families in Today’s Economy
13:30 – 14:30 in Room B3-2
How much do you know about the benefits of breastfeeding? This panel will showcase the universality of breastfeeding as well as the common challenges that breastfeeding women face. Get ready to test your knowledge and be part of the call to increase investment in breastfeeding.

Check in with the MHTF at Women Deliver

Join us in Copenhagen and online!

Attend #MomandBaby in the SDG Era: 10 Actions We Can Take
We’ll be in the Speaker’s Corner on Wednesday, 18 May; 13:10 – 13:25 for a special conversation on the 10 actions we must take to achieve the SDGs for women and newborns with Koki Agrawal, Stephen Hodgins, and Ana Langer.

Visit The MHTF Booth
Come see the MHTF team, learn how to stay up-to-date on maternal health news, research, and innovations and find out more about the Women and Health Initiative! Look for us in the exhibit hall at booth C3-018.

Follow Along on Twitter
Whether you’re attending the conference or participating from home, follow @MHTF as we tweet from sessions, discussions, and events. Join the conversation using #MomandBaby#WD2016, and #WomenDeliver.