World health organization (WHO), Federal ministry of health maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) unit, and Public Health Emergency Management (PHEM) unit within Ethiopian public health institute, regional health bureau, zonal health department, District health office, health facilities and any community are the stakeholders of maternal death surveillance and response (MDSR) system .
Globally, an estimated 287 000 women died from pregnancy and its complications in
2010, 99%, of them were in developing countries .
In Ethiopia, about 13,000 women died from pregnancy related conditions in 2013, making the country maternal death ratio 420/100,000 live births and providing approximately 4% to the total maternal deaths .
Even where resources were limited, almost all maternal deaths are preventable and could be eliminated. Surveillance system is a vital component of elimination approach that not only ways the records of deaths but delivers signal about the main factors contributing to maternal deaths – and how these deaths could be managed .
In 2012, the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners introduced the Maternal Death Surveillance and Response (MDSR) approach as a new method to maternal death review . Maternal death is often defined as the “litmus test” of the health system that measures a program's ability to answer to women's health requirements, mainly throughout and after pregnancy and birth .
Most countries with high maternal death have weak public registration systems. Therefore, numerous maternal deaths and the explanations overdue these deaths remain unregistered and unreported, mainly when women die at home .
Factors that enable to establish MDSR is Political will at regional health bureau to impulse through change well established Health Development Army structures ability to take concern for action rather than waiting for community level variation .
The aims of MDSR are to deliver information that guides immediate as well as longer term actions to reduce maternal death; and to count every maternal death, allowing an assessment of the true magnitude of maternal death and the influence of actions to decrease it [2, 3].
MDSR is an uninterrupted system that shapes on recognized methods. Maternal death review (MDR is one of the systems that has directed to local strategy variations and improvements in the quality of maternal health services, even in challenging situations. MDSR builds on the effort is implemented on MDR and helps to understand the events surrounding maternal deaths. It focuses on the need to respond to each maternal death with actions to prevent similar deaths in the future, and to collect data on all maternal deaths using clearly defined data sources and processes for identification and notification [2, 3, and 4].
MDSR also provides evidence for accomplishment, links activities to results, makes maternal death visible at all levels, informs communities & health workers, increases country ownership of data, provides information in real time and allows improvement towards catching all maternal mortalities .
If accurate information is available, preventing maternal deaths can be achievable to provide targeted actions. MDSR makes each maternal death a notifiable event, and confirms that communities and facilities report and respond to end preventable maternal deaths . The aim of this study was to evaluate maternal death surveillance and response system in Dewachefa.