Mallick, Lindsay, Trinadh Dontamsetti, Thomas Pullum, Julia Fleuret. 2018. Using the Uganda Demographic and Health Surveys from 2011 and 2016 to Assess Changes in Saving Mothers, Giving Life Intervention Districts. DHS Working Papers No. 142. Rockville, Maryland, USA: ICF.
Launched in 2012 in Uganda and Zambia, the Saving Mothers, Giving Life (SMGL) initiative aimed to improve access to and use of maternal and newborn health care as well as the quality of maternal and newborn health care services. This study compared the change in coverage of nine related maternal and child health (MCH) indicators between districts included in the SMGL initiative with the change in selected control areas using data from two Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) conducted in Uganda. The most recent DHS surveys were conducted in 2011 and 2016, one immediately preceding the initiative and another in the final year of the initiative. We employed a difference-in-differences analysis to estimate the significance of the difference in the change between treatment and control areas.
The results revealed that while respondents and their children in both the SMGL and control areas demonstrated significant improvements in MCH indicators between 2011 and 2016, the gains were largely not significantly different between the treatment and control areas, with the exception of two indicators: blood pressure measurement among women with ANC and births delivered by cesarean section. The lack of significant difference-in-differences may be due to the small sample sizes, and results should be interpreted with caution.