Home Stories Jhpiego Awarded Unitaid Project to Catalyze Adoption and Scale-Up of Drugs for Postpartum Hemorrhage

Jhpiego Awarded Unitaid Project to Catalyze Adoption and Scale-Up of Drugs for Postpartum Hemorrhage

August 16, 2022

Baltimore, MD—Jhpiego, a global leader in maternal health care, has been chosen to lead a new $18.5 million project funded by Unitaid that will inform how countries can introduce and accelerate use of key drugs to prevent and treat life-threatening bleeding after birth.

The Accelerating Measurable Progress and Leveraging Investments for Postpartum Hemorrhage Impact (AMPLI-PPHI) project will introduce quality-assured postpartum hemorrhage (PPH) drugs​​—heat-stable carbetocin, tranexamic acid, and misoprostol—to low- and middle-income countries. The project will also generate evidence on how countries can expand access to and deliver these PPH prevention and treatment medications at different levels of the health system.

Defined as severe bleeding after childbirth, PPH is the leading cause of maternal mortality worldwide, with stark disparities in survival rates between women in high- and lower-income countries. Each year, approximately 14 million women experience postpartum hemorrhage, resulting in 70,000 lives lost.

Oxytocin, the recommended first-line medicine for preventing and treating PPH, requires cold chain storage, which can be difficult to maintain in many resource-limited settings. Heat-stable carbetocin for prevention, tranexamic acid for treatment, and misoprostol for advanced distribution are three newly World Health Organization-recommended drugs for PPH that hold great potential to improve PPH prevention and treatment.

Through Jhpiego’s overall strategic leadership, project management and technical vision, AMPLI-PPHI will catalyze introduction and adoption pathways for the three PPH drugs through engagement and coordination with country governments and key stakeholders.  Jhpiego will lead the project, supported by consortium partners PATH and the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics (FIGO).

Building on their experience commercializing and scaling up health innovations, PATH will address access barriers related to availability and affordability of PPH drugs and improve market readiness in low- and middle-income countries through supply side interventions as well as strengthening in-country procurement and supply chain mechanisms.

FIGO, as the only global professional organization for ob/gyns, is uniquely positioned to cultivate leadership for PPH prevention through its affiliated societies. OB/gyn affiliates in the project’s focus countries will help to increase demand for PPH interventions and engage civil society to create sustainable access to these lifesaving drugs through community-wide partnerships and sharing of knowledge and evidence.

“One life lost to postpartum hemorrhage is one life too many,” says Jhpiego’s Elaine Roman, Director of the AMPLI-PPHI project. “This project is uniquely positioned to bring catalytic change, connecting implementation learning with market shaping efforts. Through Unitaid’s commitment to expanding access to lifesaving drugs and our partnership with ministries of health, FIGO, and PATH, we can prevent the deaths of thousands of women who experience severe bleeding after giving birth.”

As a leader in maternal health, Jhpiego has long worked to reduce deaths due to PPH. Research led by Jhpiego in Indonesia, Nepal, Afghanistan, and South Sudan demonstrated that educating women on the use of misoprostol after delivering a baby at home can significantly reduce postpartum bleeding. Through the U.S. Agency for International Development’s flagship Maternal and Child Survival Program, Jhpiego supported community-based, advanced distribution of misoprostol for self-administration.

“Our decades-long experience in managing complications at birth, including postpartum hemorrhage, makes Jhpiego well-placed to lead this project and work with our partners to bring about sustainable change,” says Dr. Leslie Mancuso, Jhpiego’s President and CEO. “No one should lose their life to a condition we know how to prevent and treat. Greater access to these drugs will bring lifesaving care to the women who need it most.”

The AMPLI-PPHI project, part of a $45 million investment from Unitaid announced today, will operate in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea, Kenya, and India. An additional 13 other countries will benefit from the sharing of project learning, resources, and tools, as well as from country and learning exchanges. The project will begin this month and run through July 2026.

This latest project is another in a line of Jhpiego and Unitaid partnerships focused on improving women’s health. Jhpiego led the recently-concluded Transforming Intermittent Preventive Treatment for Optimal Pregnancy (TIPTOP) project, a community-based approach that significantly increased the number of pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa receiving antimalarial preventive therapy, thus saving the lives of thousands of mothers and newborns. Through the Scale Up Cervical Cancer Elimination with Secondary Prevention Strategy (SUCCESS) project, Jhpiego is working to help four countries reach their targets to eliminate cervical cancer.

Additional information:

Media contact:

Ann Lolordo, Senior Director of Communications, ann.lolordo@jhpiego.org 

Jhpiego believes that when women are healthy, families and communities are strong. We won’t rest until all women and their families—no matter where they live—can access the health care they need to pursue happy and productive lives.

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