Skip to main content

Table 1 Priority evidence-based interventions during pregnancy to reduce preterm birth rates and to benefit the premature baby

From: Born Too Soon: Care during pregnancy and childbirth to reduce preterm deliveries and improve health outcomes of the preterm baby

Services delivered during antenatal care:
• Basic package for all pregnant women
• Situational interventions for populations of women at high exposure risk (e.g. identification and treatment of malaria, tuberculosis and HIV)
• Behavioural, social support and financial interventions for disadvantaged women
Management of pregnant women at higher risk of preterm birth including:
• Identification and treatment of pre-existing conditions (e.g., diabetes, thyroid disease, heart disease, asthma and other chronic conditions)
• Identification and treatment of pregnancy complications (e.g., pre-eclampsia, antepartum haemorrhage)
• Monitoring multiple pregnancies
• Administration of progesterone to prolong pregnancy
• Identification and treatment of structural abnormalities (e.g., cervical cerclage, cervical pessary)
Management of women in preterm labour including:
• Tocolytics to slow down labour
• Antenatal corticosteroids to reduce mortality in the newborn
• Antibiotics for pPROM to prevent infection
• Provision of magnesium sulphate for neuro-protection of the newborn
Community interventions:
• Promote antenatal and skilled birth care for all women
• Smoking cessation programmes
• Reductions in exposure to secondhand smoke and other pollutants
Policy interventions:
• Policies to support safe motherhood and universal access to antenatal care
• Workplace policies regulating working hours and strenuous working conditions
• Professional and hospital policies to regulate infertility treatments and to reduce caesarean section rates and early induction of labour
  1. Source: Born Too Soon report [1].