The Chlorhexidine Navi Care Program Saves Newborn Lives in Nepal

JSI is implementing and scaling-up the Chlorhexidine Navi Care Program to reach mothers and newborns throughout Nepal. The program provides tubes of the antiseptic and training to a network of health workers and female community health volunteers (FCHV) who reach out to pregnant women and new mothers in their communities to teach them how to properly treat their newborns' umbilical stump to prevent life-threatening infections.

The initiative is a cost-effective, scalable response to Nepal's high rates of neonatal infection and mortality and has made great strides in replacing unsafe cord-care practices (such as treating umbilical stumps with tumeric, oils, or ash) in districts where the program was piloted.

The success of the pilot program led Nepal's Ministry of Health and Population to order a nation-wide scale up of Chlorhexidine Navi Care, ensuring that by 2014 women in 63 of Nepal's 75 districts will have ready access to the life-saving topical antiseptic.

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