Sexual and reproductive health

Saving mothers and newborn lives in the face of the devastating Ebola outbreak

Purpose of the guide

Image of the guide
Nurses prepare daily medication doses for patients fighting Ebola.
WHO /Winnie Romeril
Nurses at Hastings prepare daily medication doses for patients fighting Ebola.

This briefing note provides information to policy-makers and programme managers on how to deliver critical health services for safe delivery and immediate newborn care to prevent increased maternal and newborn mortality due to preventable causes within the context of the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa. In the affected countries, health systems are now fragmented, significantly reducing access to routine health services, in particular essential maternal and newborn care.

The interventions summarized in this guide are intended to lower the risk of delivery and postpartum complications for both the mother and the newborn, particularly the risk of postpartum haemorrhage and infections, and improve the immediate care of premature babies. The recommendations are also intended to minimize the exposure of health care providers to blood and bodily fluids that could transmit Ebola.

Related links