PATH’s neoLENS Project - Mapping the journey to reduction of neonatal mortality observed over time

Related program: Integrated Maternal and Child Health and Development

Each year around the world, 2.4 million newborns die in the first month of life and up to 30 million newborns require some level of inpatient care. The majority of these small and sick newborns are born with low birth weight or prematurely, leaving them and their mothers highly vulnerable and requiring specialized care.

The project aims to document the approaches taken, barriers and enablers, and lessons learned for establishing and strengthening inpatient newborn care services as part of a network of newborn care, as viewed by stakeholders in the delineated geographies.

Please find the compendium of guidelines and policies collated for the neoLENS project here

As improved access to inpatient care for this population is essential for reaching the ambitious Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, there is enormous momentum in countries to scale up services. While each country has defined and varied levels of care and services for small and sick newborns, there is little evidence and evaluation of the most cost-effective and efficient ways to establish these services—including infrastructure, staffing, and services that should be available at each level of the system.

As countries seek to operationalize the new WHO Standards, it is critical to learn from, and build upon, the experiences of the past decades. Findings from the neoLENS project will inform practical guidance for designing inpatient newborn care services for low- and middle-income settings around the world to inform future investments and national scale-up plans.

The neoLENS project provides insights into the different approaches focus countries have used to establish, operationalize, and scale up inpatient newborn services. Comprised of four case studies conducted in Ethiopia, India, Malawi, and Rwanda, and a global analysis that synthesizes experiences across all four countries, the project provides practical guidance from low- and middle-income settings around the world.

World Prematurity Day 2021

The following video was created to promote World Prematurity Day 2021 and to support the launch of the Implementation Toolkit for Small and Sick Newborn Care, developed by NEST360/UNICEF.

The neoLENS project was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Additional Resources and Partners

Additional Resources and Partners

Where we work

PATH's neoLENS project documented stories of scaling up inpatient newborn care from Ethiopia, India, Malawi, and Rwanda, in hopes that other countries eager to embark on this journey will benefit from these case studies.

Contact us

If you have questions about this project, please contact