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A Free Clinical Textbook on Postpartum Hemorrhage Imagine lifesaving clinical guidelines on maternal health could be made widely available at no cost to health workers across the world. The [Global Library of Women’s Medicine]( (GLOWM) is a nonprofit initiative doing just this. Published by David and Paula Bloomer, GLOWM aims to advance women’s health by providing free access to a “vast and constantly updated, peer-reviewed resource of clinical information and guidance.”
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It is widely known that improved access to skilled health professionals and health technologies dramatically improves the chances that mothers and newborns will survive an obstetric emergency. Skilled care utilization is a key indicator for [Millennium Development Goal 5](
Infection with group B streptococcus (GBS) is one of the leading causes of newborn morbidity and mortality worldwide—causing septicemia, pneumonia, meningitis, hearing loss, developmental disability and death. Unrelated to group A streptococcus (which causes strep throat), GBS is present in [approximately 1 in 4 women]( and typically causes no symptoms in the mother. However, the bacteria can be transmitted to the infant during delivery unless women receive intravenous antibiotics during labor.
In 2005, India launched the largest conditional cash transfer program in the world with its [Janani Suraksha Yojana]( (JSY) initiative. JSY, which roughly translates to “Safe Motherhood Scheme”, provides cash payments to pregnant women who deliver in public medical facilities, as well as the [women health workers or ASHAs]( who accompany them. JSY was established in response to India’s persistently high rates of maternal and neonatal mortality, which account for approximately 20% and 31% of the worldwide totals.
As a small departure from our usual blog, we thought it would add some insight about the kinds of barriers that small global health startups face. These are the mundane, day to day issues that can actually make or break you in the end. While we try to be relentlessly positive about the exciting new technologies coming down the pike, sometimes one has to be just brutally honest about obstacles faced. **1. International shipping** Oh, let us count the ways that international shipping can sneak in and foil best laid plans--wet packages left out in the rain in Bali? check (zip loc is your friend) hemoglobinometers stuck in customs and then returned from the Ukraine? check. Bribes and fees? Our partners face them all the time.
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