Matind: Demand side programs for maternal health services in India

MATIND is a European Union (EU) funded FP7 project, coordinated by the Department of Public Health Sciences/Global Health at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. The main objective is to evaluate two innovative large scale programs, which were set up to decrease maternal mortality among women living below poverty line in India.

India contributes 20% of global maternal deaths, and has one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the world. Furthermore 26% of the Indian population is living below poverty line.

Two ongoing Indian programs (Janani Suraksha Yojanawere and Chiranjeevi Yojana) were started in order to reduce maternal mortality by promoting institutional delivery and reducing access barriers to maternal healthcare for poor women. These two large scale state run programs operate in two separate Indian provinces, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh. Each of the programs operates through the use of different innovative demand side financing mechanisms specifically aimed at improving access to health care for vulnerable groups.

There is a lack of reports on the effect of these efforts and therefore a need to evaluate the financing programs for maternal health. The field is fairly new and recent scientific literature proposes a more robust evaluation. The MATIND project addresses the evidence gap with respect to the impact of these interventions.