The Salud Mesoamerica Initiative (SMI) is a three-operation strategy, and is a pioneer in the world of results-based aid (RBA) in terms of the success it has achieved in improving health system inputs following its initial operation. We investigated the influential aspects of SMI that could have contributed to its effectiveness in improving health systems, with the aim of providing international donors, bilateral organizations, philanthropies, and recipient countries with new perspectives that can help increase the effectiveness of future assistance for health, specifically in the arena of RBA.
October 27, 2017
Healthy competition drives success in resultsbased aid: Lessons from the Salud Mesoamerica Initiative
October 17, 2017
Perceptions of and barriers to family planning services in the poorest regions of Chiapas, Mexico: a qualitative study of men, women, and adolescents
In the poorest regions of Chiapas, Mexico, 50.2% of women in need of contraceptives do not use any modern method. A qualitative study was needed to design effective and culturally appropriate interventions.
March 15, 2017
Barriers and facilitators for institutional delivery among poor Mesoamerican women: a cross-sectional study
Professional skilled care has shown to be one of the most promising strategies to reduce maternal mortality, and in-facility deliveries are a cost-effective way to ensure safe births. We examined the characteristics of women who had a delivery in a health facility and determinants of the decision to bypass a closer facility and travel to a distant one.
January 23, 2017
Contraceptive knowledge and use among women living in the poorest areas of five Mesoamerican countries
The purpose of this study was to identify factors associated with contraceptive use among women in need living in the poorest areas in five Mesoamerican countries: Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama and State of Chiapas (Mexico).
August 29, 2016
Alcohol abuse and other factors associated with risky sexual behaviors among adolescent students from the poorest areas in Costa Rica
We applied the Integrative Model of Behavioral Prediction to analyze factors associated with risky sexual behaviors for adolescent students living in the poorest segments in Costa Rica.
August 19, 2016
Poor women in the developing world have a heightened need for antenatal care (ANC) but are often the least likely to attend it. This study examines factors associated with the number and timing of ANC visits for poor women in Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, and El Salvador.
April 27, 2016
Institutional Delivery and Satisfaction among Indigenous and Poor Women in Guatemala, Mexico, and Panama
Indigenous women in Mesoamerica experience disproportionately high maternal mortality rates and are less likely to have institutional deliveries. Identifying correlates of institutional delivery, and satisfaction with institutional deliveries, may help improve facility utilization and health outcomes in this population. We used baseline surveys from the Salud Mesoamérica Initiative to analyze data from 10,895 indigenous and non-indigenous women in Guatemala and Mexico (Chiapas State) and indigenous women in Panama.
January 19, 2016
Care practices and risk factors for diarrhea among impoverished communities across Mesoamerica are unknown. Using Salud Mesoamérica Initiative baseline data, collected 2011–2013, we assessed the prevalence of diarrhea, adherence to evidence-based treatment guidelines, and potential diarrhea correlates in poor and indigenous communities across Mesoamerica. This study surveyed 14,500 children under 5 years of age in poor areas of El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico (Chiapas State), Nicaragua, and Panama.
October 27, 2015
Missed opportunities for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunization in Mesoamerica: potential impact on coverage and days at risk
Recent outbreaks of measles in the Americas have received news and popular attention, noting the importance of vaccination to population health. To estimate the potential increase in immunization coverage and reduction in days at risk if every opportunity to vaccinate a child was used, we analyzed vaccination histories of children 11–59 months of age from large household surveys in Mesoamerica.
July 14, 2015
Individual income and poverty are associated with poor health outcomes. The poor face unique challenges related to access, education, financial capacity, environmental effects, and other factors that threaten their health outcomes.
July 2, 2015
Comparative estimates of crude and effective coverage of measles immunization in low-resource settings: Findings from Salud Mesoamérica 2015
Timely and accurate measurement of population protection against measles is critical for decision-making and prevention of outbreaks. However, little is known about how survey-based estimates of immunization (crude coverage) compare to the seroprevalence of antibodies (effective coverage), particularly in low-resource settings. In poor areas of Mexico and Nicaragua, we used household surveys to gather information on measles immunization from child health cards and caregiver recall.
July 1, 2015
We estimated the prevalence of ever breastfeeding, early initiation of breastfeeding, exclusive breastfeeding, and breastfeeding between 6 mo and 2 y of age using household survey data for the poorest quintile of families living in 6 Mesoamerican countries. We also assessed the predictors of breastfeeding behaviors to identify factors amenable to policy interventions.
May 18, 2015
Use of a commercial ELISA for the detection of measles-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) in dried blood spots collected from children living in low-resource settings
Seroepidemiological monitoring of population immunity to vaccine-preventable diseases is critical to prevent future outbreaks. This study validates a novel technique for measuring measles-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) in capillary DBS using a commercial ELISA.
February 7, 2015
Health has improved markedly in Mesoamerica, the region consisting of southern Mexico and Central America, over the past decade. Despite this progress, there remain substantial inequalities in health outcomes, access, and quality of medical care between and within countries. Poor, indigenous, and rural populations have considerably worse health indicators than national or regional averages. In an effort to address these health inequalities, the Salud Mesoamérica 2015 Initiative (SM2015), a results-based financing initiative, was established.
December 9, 2013
The objectives of this study were to provide an accurate estimate of antenatal HIV screening and its determinants among pregnant women in El Salvador and help local authorities make informed decisions for targeted interventions around mother-to-child transmission (MTCT).
Accepted Not Yet Published
Publications coming soon.