The Latest from our Blog

PACE MD | obstetric first aid | women's health
August 11, 2014

We have been following PACE-MD with great interest for years now. They focus on Obstetrical First Responders as the first link in the chain of survival in Mexico. We have long believed that the analogy to an EMT might be a better way to get beyond the long-standing disputes over what traditional birth attendants versus midwives versus others, including community health workers, can handle as far as maternal health emergencies. PACE-MD focuses on handling obstetric emergencies starting at the first contact with a health worker.

Northern Nigeria and the story of Traffina
August 11, 2014

One of our recent customers was the Traffina Foundation. Like some other groups we so admire, this non-profit was entirely conceived of, developed and run by a female obstetrician from Nigeria. And the funds that finance the non-profit are largely raised from donations by Nigerians. Traffina has created an enhanced birth kit-- the kind we wish we could have waved a wand and created ourselves. The birth kit includes the usual clean razor, cord clamps and plastic sheet but also misoprostol (to prevent postpartum hemorrhage) and chlorhexidine (a new gel for better cord care). Through careful sourcing, research and production the team has already distributed over 6000 birth kits. Demand in Northern Nigeria is immense.

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July 18, 2014

What explains the enormous more than 50 fold difference in maternal mortality rates across this river? Both areas of Tajikistan and Afghanistan are "in geographically contiguous poor, post-conflict, highly conservative, mountainous countries." How can the obstetric risks for women be so different? To continue our review of this fascinating study, we take a closer look at the differences between the Tajik and Afghan sides of the river as reported in the study by Kylea Liese.

maternal mortality | Afghanistan | violence against women
July 03, 2014

“Even on a mountain, there is still a road.”
Pashto proverb

Why are women just over the border of a small 60 foot river, in Tajikistan, about fifty times less likely to die in childbirth as compared to women in Afghanistan?

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July 01, 2014

Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral
Melvin Kranzberg, The Six Laws of Technology

In Austin, Texas today law student Cody Wilson is printing guns. Well, technically, he prints parts of guns. And these are not just any guns; Cody Wilson prints semiautomatic weapons. In seven hours, Mr. Wilson’s Defense Distributed Company prints a key component of firearms (the AR-15 lower receivers), the exact component that (not coincidentally) happens to be tracked by the U.S. government.

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