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Indonesia has high maternal and neonatal mortality. Starting in 2012 Project HOPE implemented a maternal health program in five factories in West Java Province, reaching over 11,000 women with health services and education. This model links public services with privately owned factories, and has been praised by the National Ministry of Health for improving health care access. The project resulted in improvements in women’s health knowledge and behavior, including doubling in the percentage of women who understand what anemia is and in the percentage who take iron tablets to prevent it. The Ministry of Health is interested in scaling up the approach nationally.

Since 2013 HOPE has been working with the Serang District Health Office to improve access to skilled maternal and newborn care to reduce high maternal and newborn mortality rates. The project trains health center staff for Basic Obstetric and Newborn Emergency Care certification, which enable trained staff to handle emergency obstetric and neonatal complications. The project also trains village midwives on Minimum Activities for Mothers and Newborn framework with focus on birth-preparedness-complication readiness, Active Management of the Third Stage of Labor, life-saving skills, infection control, prevention of hypothermia, initiate breastfeeding within one hour, referral for complication, and ensure postnatal visit within 72 hours of delivery. Many improvements have occurred, such as an increase from 59 percent to 87 percent of women giving birth with a skilled health provider.

History

Project HOPE has a long history of helping the people of Indonesia, beginning in 1960 when the maiden voyage of the SS HOPE brought care and health education to the country. Over the years, Project HOPE programs in Indonesia have focused on medical professional training and the health of women and children. Some notable past HOPE programs in Indonesia have included a pediatric critical care/intensive care nursing certification program in 1986, a midwives and physicians training program in 1989 and a formal biomedical engineering training program in Bali started in the late 1990s.

When Indonesia was devastated by the Indian Ocean Tsunami in late 2004, HOPE responded by sending more than 200 medical volunteers with the U.S. Navy on a humanitarian mission to help in the aftermath and donating more than $7 million in medical supplies and medicines. Project HOPE helped to rebuild the health system in Aceh and Nias by providing humanitarian assistance and long-term maternal and child health projects in Banda Aceh, Nagan Raya and Aceh Barat districts from 2005 until 2012.  At the conclusion of the program almost all maternal and child health indicators increased compared to baseline, and the project successfully handed over to local government who sustained program activities using the government budget.

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