Improving Care of Mothers and Babies: A guide for improvement teams

Improving Care of Mothers and Babies: A guide for improvement teams is designed for healthcare providers in limited-resource settings who want to learn and apply special methods to improve the care of mothers and babies. It includes information and tools to facilitate implementation of quality improvement (QI) activities at the facility level.

The guide outlines the process of improvement step-by-step, helping providers plan, test, implement, continuously assess and sustain interventions that enable care to be delivered in the best way possible. Improving Care of Mothers and Babies can guide those new to improvement methodologies, as well as provide further support to those who have experience implementing and managing improvement projects. It can be used by a leader or facilitator to help others learn about improvement in both clinical and workshop settings, and can also be used as a self-study manual by improvement teams and individuals.


Improving Care of Mothers and Babieswas developed through the collaborative efforts of the Survive & Thrive Global Development Alliance.  

All Improving Care of Mothers and Babies materials – QI Guide, Appendices, Maternal and Newborn Practice Exercises, User Guides, Worksheets, and more – can be accessed and downloaded at no cost on the AAP's International Resources website. Materials are currently available in English, though French and Spanish translations are underway.

Integration with Newborn and Maternal Health Education Programs

QI is essential for achieving significant improvements in maternal and newborn health outcomes. Even when providers have the appropriate knowledge and skills, gaps in quality of care still occur. It has become increasingly clear that for practice to change and for health outcomes to improve, education must be delivered within a broader framework that includes QI. Making improvement a permanent part of a facility's routine is critical to newborn and maternal survival.

For this reason, Improving Care of Mothers and Babies was designed to be highly compatible with the AAP's Helping Babies Survive and Jhpiego's Helping Mothers Survive training programs. This design promotes the critical linkage between the provision of care and QI – providers must have the appropriate skills to care for mothers and babies, as well as the capacity to change service delivery processes that enhance quality and performance.

​The Guide can be used as a stand-alone tool to build quality improvement capacity and initiate continuous improvement in clinical settings, or it can easily be integrated with other health care training programs. Improving Care of Mothers and Babies is a practical guide that can help accelerate the use of QI methods in health systems and advance the care of mothers and babies in resource constrained areas around the world.

​Maternal and Newborn Health Quality Improvement Resources

The tools, information and resources listed below are intended to provide further guidance on applying QI methods to programs and processes.


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American Academy of Pediatrics