HealthBridge works with partners world-wide to improve health and health equity through research, policy and action.

Saving lives of mothers and children in Nepal and Vietnam


HealthBridge is working with local partners and governments in Banke District, Nepal and Son La Province, Vietnam to reduce preventable maternal and child illness and death and improve nutrition for vulnerable mothers and children.

The 1,000 days between conception and a child’s second birthday are critical for physical and intellectual development, and lifelong health. Nepal and Vietnam have developed national commitments and strategies to address health and nutrition during this critical period. Yet, health inequities persist and many women and children face significant challenges to survive and thrive. 

The challenge is greatest in the rural areas of Nepal and Vietnam, particularly in ethnic minority communities. Limited access to and use of health services in Banke District, Nepal and Son La Province, Vietnam contribute to higher rates of infant and maternal mortality—in some cases, rates that are double the national averages.

Women and children need improved access to quality health services and adequate nutrition in these regions.

Together we are strengthening existing health systems and improving nutrition by:

  • Training community health workers to link mothers and newborns with essential pre-natal and post-natal care;
  • Improving health facilities by providing essential equipment, supplies, and infrastructure;
  • Engaging  men and family members  to overcome gender barriers and increase their support for the health of women and children;
  • Building the capacity of local partners to deliver quality health and nutrition services through training and mentoring;
  • Increasing knowledge amongst women and men of good nutrition and feeding practices for pregnant women and children under two;
  • Improving access to micronutrient-rich foods and supplements for pregnant women and children under two;
  • Equipping community health workers and outreach clinics to provide vaccinations, health counselling, growth monitoring and nutrition counselling to caregivers of undernourished children.


Banke District, Nepal; Son La Province, Vietnam



April 2016 - 2020

Achieved Outcomes

  • Improved use of essential health services by women and children from pregnancy to age two (ante-natal care, skilled birth attendance, post-natal care, newborn care, DTP3 immunization, oral rehydration salts for diarrhea, care-seeking for pneumonia);
  • Increased consumption of nutritious foods and supplements for women and children from pregnancy to age two (exclusive and early initiation of breastfeeding, appropriate infant and young child feeding practices, iron-folic acid supplementation during pregnancy and Vitamin A supplementation).
  • Significant improvements to the infrastructure of health facilties (incuding infection contorl equipment) in Nepal
  • Enhanced knowledge of maternal and child health among men and family members in Nepal
  • Increased proportion of births at health facilities in Vietnam
  • Increased attendance of husbands accnompanying their wives to antenatal care visits in Vietnam
  • Increased proportion of newborns who recevied health checks within 24 hours after birth 
  • Enhanced knoweldge of adolescent reproductiveh health among adolscents in Vietnam

Further Details