Modeling the Potential Reduction of Newborn Mortality with National Scaling up of Community-based Newborn Care in Ethiopia

  • Lisanu Tadesse
  • Mariam Sylla
  • Luwei Pearson
  • Yvonne Tam
  • Abraham Tariku
  • Bilal Avan


Introduction: Ethiopia is scaling up community based newborn care on the platform of the Health Extension Programme after national introduction of integrated community case management of pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria and severe acute malnutrition in the four agrarian regions. Since 2013, 26,600 female health extension workers have been trained and supported to provide community based newborn care, including management of newborn sepsis, at an estimated 14,000 health posts or at home.

Objective: To conduct a modeling exercise to project the potential reduction of the newborn mortality rate due to the community based newborn care program in the four agrarian regions of Ethiopia.

Methods.  We created three projections: (1) baseline projection without community based newborn care using 2013 data; (2) a “realistic” projection using the 2014-2016 data from available survey and routine information systems and (3) a “best case” scenario which scaled up the full package of maternal newborn and child care interventions according to the targets of the Health Sector Transformation Plan of Ethiopia.

Results: If the 2016 coverage achievements of the implementation sites (realistic projection) were applied to the four agrarian regions, we project that the community based newborn care program has contributed 46,180 additional neonatal lives saved between 2013 and 2016. If the Health Sector Transformation Programme targets of maternal newborn and child care are reached, nearly 187,514 additional neonatal lives will be saved between 2017 to 2020, with 233,696 additional neonatal lives saved between 2013 to 2020.

Original Article