MHTF-PLOS Collection Call for Papers: Non-Communicable Diseases and Maternal Health Around the Globe

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By: Sarah Hodin, Project Coordinator II, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

The causes of maternal mortality are complex and often begin well before a woman goes into labor or even becomes pregnant. Improving maternal health outcomes requires a comprehensive understanding of women’s health throughout the life course. Addressing the root causes of poor maternal health is especially important given the current “obstetric transition”: In many parts of the world, we are witnessing an epidemiological shift from mostly direct causes of maternal deaths to more indirect causes.

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) account for almost 65% of women’s deaths around the globe, and three quarters of women’s deaths caused by NCDs occur in low- and middle-income countries. Women with diabetes, anemia, obesity and hypertensive pregnancy disorders are at a higher risk of developing dangerous childbirth-related complications, as are their newborns. Children born to mothers with NCDs are also at a higher risk of experiencing adverse health outcomes later in life. Interventions designed to reduce maternal mortality, particularly in low-resource settings, have focused heavily on intrapartum care—administering oxytocin to prevent hemorrhage and magnesium sulfate for pre-eclampsia/eclampsia, for instance. Less attention has been given to the complex “indirect causes” of maternal deaths and the underlying risk factors for life-threatening complications. A more holistic approach to improving maternal health is needed, which includes addressing the global burden of NCDs contributing to maternal mortality and morbidity worldwide.

The Maternal Health Task Force (MHTF) and PLOS ONE are delighted to announce the call for papers for the fifth annual MHTF-PLOS Collection: “Non-Communicable Diseases and Maternal Health Around the Globe.” In order to increase global access to comprehensive information on maternal health, the MHTF collaborates with the Public Library of Science (PLOS) annually to curate freely available, open access collections of research on maternal health. Through this partnership, the MHTF aims to highlight in particular the work of maternal health researchers in low-resource settings.

Please read the full call for papers on the PLOS website for more information.

Deadline: EXTENDED to 1 April, 2017

Contact us with any inquiries about the MHTF-PLOS Collection.