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Kangaroo knowledge

Nearly 6 million children died before the age of five in low- and middle-income countries in 2015. Approximately 45 %, more than 2.5 million, die within the first month of life, 1 million of these on the first day. In addition, about one million unborn babies and 150,000 women die during childbirth. One possible solution: Kangaroo Mother Care.

The Centre for Intervention Science in Maternal and Child Health (CISMAC) supports research aiming to improve health and survival of mothers and children as well as child development. Projects target low-income populations in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. 

CISMAC is anchored at the Centre for International Health (CIH), University of Bergen, Norway. The centre is partner with research institutions in Ethiopia, Nepal, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and have two Indian partners working on improving health and survival for mother and children.

CISMAC has two ongoing projects in India, carried out in collaboration between the University of Bergen, the Indian Institutions Translational Health Science and Technology Institute and Centre for Health Research and Development (THSTI), Society for Applied Studies (CHRD-SAS).

One of the projects is about initiating Kangaroo Mother Care in homes, and is described as one of the key scientific outcomes of CISMAC for 2016. Kangaroo Mother Care, sometimes called skin-to-skin-care, consists of low birth weight babies being wrapped to the mother’s or father’s chest. This substantially enhance the baby’s chances of survival, reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infection, and increasing rates of breastfeeding and weight gain. This is a promising low-cost intervention for this vulnerable group. 

This Indo-Norwegian project is financed through the Research Council of Norway.

To read more about the Kangaroo Mother Care, go to page 24 in CISMAC’s annual report:

CISMAC is a CoE – Norwegian Centres of Excellence. The CoE programme gives Norway’s best scientists the opportunity to organize their research in centres in order to reach ambitious scientific goals. The Research Council aims at selecting new CoEs every fifth year.

Another Norwegian funded project using the Kangaroo Mother Care is the NIPI Newborn Project. To read more, click here.