The Laerdal Foundation for Acute Medicine has granted support to the research institute at Haydom, Haydom Global Health Institute, in order to maintain and further develop this unique research infrastructure in rural Tanzania. Haydom Global Health Institute started with only two employees and one room in 2009, since then it has grown rapidly both in quantity and quality. Today the research institute has 52 employees and is in the process of expanding the research container building (photo) with extra storage and a lab.
Since 2009, the research institute has mainly focused on two large projects; Towards MDG 4&5 including the Helping Babies Breathe and Helping Mothers Survive studies, and the worldwide MAL-ED study. The institute is not only producing high quality research data, but has managed to impact the quality of care in the hospital.
Almost every midwife at the Maternity ward have trained and retrained Helping Babies Breathe (HBB) and Helping Mothers Survive (HMS) using simulation based practice. Research assistants (RA) trained in using stop watches have been observing and recording every delivery, an advanced data management system have been implemented, and the archives now contains data from about 20000 deliveries. The results have been tremendous; despite an increase in deliveries the numbers of neonatal deaths and fresh stillbirths have decreased. Based on the collected data, six papers have been published, two papers are under review, one PhD has been finalized (Ersdal), a second PhD is in its final stage (Nelissen), and two PhDs under the Safer Births study have just commenced (Thallinger and Linde).
The institute applied for support in order to continue the success-story of newborn and maternal research in Haydom with the Safer Births study. By building on its existing infrastructure and expertise, Haydom will take one more step towards meeting MDG 4&5 by 2015, but also go beyond and explore solutions for meeting the challenges on the post-2015 development agenda.