By Adam Tamburin
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The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is teaming with a local nonprofit founded by former Sen. Bill Frist to promote women’s health in developing countries.
Frist announced the partnership Monday. The Gates Foundation will focus on a new initiative spearheaded by Frist’s Hope Through Healing Hands organization.
That initiative, dubbed the Faith-Based Coalition for Healthy Mothers and Children Worldwide, will aim to encourage faith leaders to discuss health issues facing mothers, newborns and children, according to a media statement.
In particular, the coalition plans to emphasize the importance of spacing and planning births using contraception or natural family planning methods. Hope Through Healing Hands and the Faith-Based Coalition for Healthy Mothers and Children Worldwide will meet with evangelical and conservative leaders throughout the U.S. with an appeal to support these efforts, the statement said.
“Maternal and child health issues are at the core of global health and saving lives,” Frist said in the statement. “We know that family planning, including access to contraception, plays a critical role in combating maternal mortality and enhancing newborn and child survival rates.”
Dr. Jenny Eaton Dyer, the CEO and executive director of HTHH, says the coalition’s success could save lives.
“We are committed to leveraging our own networks in the United States to support maternal, newborn and child health by promoting awareness and education on the life-saving benefits of healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies for mothers and children worldwide,” Dyer said.
By Adam Tamburin
Feb 24 2014
Kate Etue, Director of Communications
Two years ago, the Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund granted $462,800 to Regis College to advance Haiti's future nursing leaders through a master's degree of nursing program in the country. The goal was to unite Haiti's government and higher education institutions to support nursing programs in their country.
The grant enabled the country to elevate their nursing program to a higher level, which has resulted in sustaining nursing jobs, promoting healthcare standards, and transforming the health sector.
On February 18, 2014, the first twelve faculty graduates of the master's degree in nursing program from the University of Haiti. Twenty-four more faculty members will complete the program, who will in turn pass their education on to more than 4,000 students each year.
Read more at Regis College's website.
Feb 20 2014
Meeting First Lady Roman Tesfaye
Feb 19 2014
Jenny Dyer, PhDThe Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) has pulled together a congressional delegation trip to Ethopia, and they invited me to join them. In leading HTHH’s Faith-Based Coalition for Healthy Mothers and Children Worldwide, I was invited to meet the faith leaders here to learn their stories and the position on the progress of healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies here in Ethiopia.
Report from the Field
Feb 14 2014
Bethesda O'Connell, East Tennessee State UniversityWe visited a malnourished and abused child, named Cesar, who is doing much better. My hosts and I visited him in the hospital yesterday and he looked like a different child. He had been given a much needed hair cut and had gained about five pounds. He was watching cars and motorcycles out of his window and jabbering away in Q’eqchi’ about them. We did understand “beep, beep!” He is expected to be transferred to a rehabilitation center next week.
And how can you be involved in improving maternal health worldwide?
Feb 12 2014
Jenny Dyer, PhDOf all the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), MDG5, or Improving maternal health, is critical for addressing other global health issues like child survival, extreme poverty and hunger. If Mom dies in childbirth or suffers severe complications, the entire family is in jeopardy. Kids may not be able to finish primary education in order to raise siblings. Mom may suffer from poor health and cannot maintain her job. Newborns lack a mother to nurture them in their first years of life.
Bethesda O'Connell, East Tennessee State UniversityThe comprehensive report that I have been creating of a baseline study has proven to be a challenge and a great learning experience. I have learned how to use SPSS software more fully and gained a better understanding of application of biostatistics and epidemiologic concepts I learned in the classroom. Having to actually use information always brings a new level of understanding. I have called upon colleagues within my network at the ETSU College of Public Health to help me along the way. After finishing up some literature review for recommendations, my report will be ready to submit to the organization by February 14.
FGHL Blog: Beth O'Connell - Debunking Myths of a Cursed Child: Addressing Abuse and Malnutrition in Guatemala
Feb 07 2014
Bethesda O'Connell, East Tennessee State UniversityDay 1, Guatemala
I spent my first night in Guatemala City with Christian Aponte, director of CAFNIMA, my host organization. He helped me review the report I have been working on of the household survey data. We have been fine tuning it to be the most helpful to the organization and people. From there, I took a five-hour bus ride to Cobán and a two-hour truck ride to the Ulpán Valley.
Feb 05 2014
Senator Bill Frist, MD and Jenny Dyer, PhDFive years ago, Save the Children asked me to chair their Newborn and Child Survival Campaign. In 1990, over 12 million kids were dying every year; that is, over 33,000 children were dying every single day from preventable, treatable disease.
Today, the statistics have changed. We have almost cut that number in half. The goal for Millennium Development Goal #4 to reduce child mortality by 2/3 is within our grasp. The numbers show that almost 6.6 million children die per year, or about 18,000 children per day. The good news is that we are making progress.