We partner with the Government of India to improve the health of women, children, and communities, especially young people.
MOMENTUM partners with the Indian government at the national and state levels in improving the health of women, children, and families through the public and private sectors. Partnership is central to our approach and helps women and children access high-quality health care now and in the future. Through our partnerships, we work with federal and state governments to:
- Work with nurses and midwives to deliver high-quality, respectful health care for mothers and children by implementing international recommendations and addressing issues that negatively impact services.
- Improve access nationwide to a full range of contraceptive methods, especially for youth.
- Make it safer for women to give birth by cesarean section.
- Improve the quality, efficiency, effectiveness, availability, and use of data to help drive decisions made by states and individuals about health care.
- Assist health facilities in providing safe and continued access to essential health services during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Vaccinate Indians in 18 states against COVID-19.
Delivering COVID-19 Vaccines
The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021 resulted in a massive surge of COVID-19 cases and deaths across India, putting the country’s public health system under tremendous strain.1 MOMENTUM Routine Immunization Transformation and Equity is working with the Government of India and 18 state governments to help Indians get vaccinated against COVID-19. We are helping to improve the supply chain for COVID-19 vaccines; find and train health workers to administer the vaccines; spread best practices about vaccine administration and monitoring; and help ensure the vaccines reach every Indian, no matter how far away they live from health facilities.
Learn how we work with our partner countries to introduce COVID-19 vaccines.
Partnering with Young People to Make Informed Health Decisions
Nearly one in four girls in India is married by her 18th birthday, putting her at risk for early and unplanned pregnancies.2 MOMENTUM Country and Global Leadership: India-Yash partners with youth champions and local leaders in the Indian states of Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, and Odisha to help make informed decisions about their health. We use a positive youth development approach to engage young people with their families, communities, and governments. In addition, our partnerships with local health systems help youth access a range of quality, affordable family planning methods and other essential health services so they can lead healthy, productive lives and participate in India’s dynamic economy.
MOMENTUM helps civil society and youth-led organizations champion family planning and reproductive health care for young people. We also partner with youth champions to change community norms and policies on issues like gender roles, gender-based violence, menstrual hygiene, and early marriage by working with local leaders.
To help make family planning services in both the public and private sectors more friendly and accessible to young people, MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics provides financial and technical support to partners for provider training and mentorship to overcome potential biases and help facilities design services specifically for youth.
Learn more about how MOMENTUM Country and Global Leadership: India-Yash engages with adolescents and youth to make decisions about their reproductive health.
Working With Nurses to Deliver Essential Care
India is home to over two million nurse-midwives and nearly a million auxiliary nurse-midwives.3 As nurses are critical to delivering health care to women and children throughout the country, MOMENTUM Country and Global Leadership partners with the World Health Organization (WHO), the Indian Nursing Council, and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to help the Indian national government and governments in several Indian states implement recommendations from the latest international guidance, including WHO’s State of the World’s Nursing Report 2020 and Strategic Directions for Nursing and Midwifery 2021-2025 and UNFPA’s State of the World’s Midwifery Report 2021.
Using workforce data collected by the government, we assist India’s national government and select state governments in addressing issues that negatively impact services delivered by nurses and midwives. This collaboration allows us to identify gaps in relevant health policy and understand how policies are implemented, enabling us to make recommendations to national and state governments that align with global standards and help improve the quality of care that women and children receive.
Providing Access to a Full Range of Contraceptive Methods
Forty-two percent of all women in India are currently using a modern contraceptive method, with sterilization being the most common method: nearly one in three women of reproductive age have undergone the procedure.4 MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics partners with local organizations and providers in six Indian states—Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Assam, and Karnataka—to help people access the information and services they need to make voluntary and informed decisions about family planning at every stage of their lives. This collaboration focuses on increasing awareness of long-acting reversible contraceptive methods, such as intrauterine devices, and working with public and private providers and individuals to address common myths and misconceptions about contraceptive methods through training and social behavior change efforts. The partnership also works with public and private providers to deliver high-quality and safe surgical methods of contraception, specifically for women during the postpartum and post-abortion periods and for men through no-scalpel vasectomies.
Making It Safer to Deliver by Cesarean Section
Nearly one in five Indian women who deliver their baby in a health facility does so by cesarean section.5 MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics works with state governments, technical resource groups, professional associations, and health workers to make cesarean deliveries safer and more accessible by:
- Helping develop and update technical guidelines.
- Strengthening midwives’ client counseling and supervisory skills.
- Creating and strengthening systems that provide health workers with ongoing mentorship and oversight.
- Improving referral systems through innovations in digital technology.
Maintaining Essential Health Services During COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic in India has been accompanied by an increase in domestic violence and sexual assault against women; the National Commission of Women recorded a 2.5 times increase in domestic violence between February and May 2020. 6 The pandemic has also overwhelmed the health system and affected the performance of health care workers, with 53 percent of health workers at risk of psychological distress.7 MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics works with individuals, communities, and the public health system to respond to and mitigate COVID-19-exacerbated gender-based violence in communities and strengthen the primary health system’s capacity to deal with COVID-19 cases among newborns, adolescents, and women of reproductive age. MOMENTUM also bolsters community health workers’ resilience and self-efficacy around psychological well-being.
Improving the Quality and Use of Health Data
MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics works with partners in the states of Jharkhand and Karnataka to make health data more efficient, effective, and widely available for use in program budgeting, planning, and quality improvement monitoring. With our partners, we are investigating the creation of a digital portal to monitor obstetric surgeries at health facilities. We are also collaborating with our partners to strengthen their health management information systems to improve data collection, quality, and monitoring related to cesarean deliveries.
MOMENTUM Country and Global Leadership: Jhpiego, State Ministries of Health (Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Odisha), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Leading Purpose Campaigns India Pvt. Ltd., Quicksand Design Studio Pvt. Ltd. (Quicksand), Child in Need Institute (CINI), Final Mile Consulting LLC, Student Partnership WorldWide India Project Trust, Impact Innovators and Entrepreneurs Foundation, Centre for Catalyzing Change (C3), The Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM)
MOMENTUM Safe Surgery in Family Planning and Obstetrics: Government of India Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, State Ministries of Health (Assam, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, and Orissa), Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India (FOGSI)
MOMENTUM Routine Immunization Transformation and Equity: John Snow India Private Limited, HelpAge India, Indian Social Responsibility Network (ISRN), Karuna Trust, Lords Education and Health Society (LEHS), MAMTA Health Institute for Mother and Child, John Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (JHCCP), Center for Communication and Change – India (CCC-I), Solidarity and Action Against The HIV Infection in India (SAATHII), George Institute for Global Health
Learn more about USAID’s programs in India.
- Samarasekera, Udani. June 2021. “India grapples with second wave of COVID-19.” The Lancet Microbe 2(6): E238. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2666-5247(21)00123-3
- International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS) and ICF. 2021. National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5), 2019-21: India. Mumbai: IIPS. https://dhsprogram.com/pubs/pdf/FR375/FR375.pdf
- World Health Organization (WHO). “Midwives – central to providing quality care to mothers and newborns during COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.” May 2020. https://www.who.int/india/news/photo-story/detail/midwives—central-to-providing-quality-care-to-mothers-and-newborns-during-covid-19-pandemic-and-beyond
- International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS) and ICF. 2021. National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5), 2019-21: India. Mumbai: IIPS.
- World Health Organization (WHO). Births by Caesarean Section. The Global Health Observatory.https://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.BIRTHSBYCAESAREAN?lang=en
- National Human Rights Commission [India]. Human Rights Advisory on Rights of Women in the Context of COVID-19. October 7, 2020.
- Menon GR, Yadav J, Aggarwal S, Singh R, Kaur S, Chakma T, Periyasamy M, Venkateswaran C, Singh PK, Balachandar R, Kulkarni R, Grover A, Mishra BK, Viray M, Devi KR, Singh KHJ, Saha KB, Barde PV, Thomas B, Suresh C, A D, Watson B, Selvaraj P, Xavier G, John D, Menon J, Philip S, Mathew G, David A, Vaman RS, Sushan A, Singh S, Jakhar K, Ketharam A, Prusty R, Kishore J, Venkatesh U, Kumar S, Kanungo S, Sahoo K, Swain S, Lyngdoh A, Diengdoh J, Syiemlieh P, Sarkar A, Velhal G, Kharnare S, Nandanwar D, Rao MVV, Panda S. “Psychological distress and burnout among healthcare worker during COVID-19 pandemic in India-A cross-sectional study.” PLoS One. 2022 Mar 10;17(3):e0264956. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0264956. PMID: 35271652; PMCID: PMC8912126.
Last updated September 2022.