The ALERT intervention research project

ALERT (Action Leveraging Evidence to reduce perinatal Mortality and morbidity in Sub-Saharan Africa) is a hospital maternity-based quality improvement and implementation science project in Benin, Malawi, Tanzania and Uganda. The project is coordinated at Karolinska Institutet.

The aim of the project is to develop and evaluate a multifaceted intervention to strengthen the implementation of evidence-based interventions and responsive care and reduce in-facility perinatal mortality and morbidity through a multidisciplinary approach in Benin, Malawi, Tanzania and Uganda.


Intrapartum care needs more attention: every day more than 7,000 women and their offspring could be saved if known evidence-based intervention were consistently implemented during the few hours surrounding birth. Hospitals care for about 40-50% of all births in Sub-Saharan Africa including complicated births.

The ALERT intervention will include four main components:

  1. end-user participation through narratives of women, families and midwifery providers to ensure co-design of the intervention
  2. competency-based training;
  3.  quality improvement, supported by data from a clinical perinatal e-registry;
  4. empowerment and leadership mentoring of maternity unit leaders complemented by district based bi-annual coordination and accountability meetings.

Project team

Our team is a multi-disciplinary team of clinicians (obstetrics and midwifery), public health physicians, social scientists, health systems specialists, medical anthropologists, economists, and management scientists from leading universities and research institutions.

Principal Investigators:

  • Project coordinator: Claudia Hanson, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
  • Dr Lenka Benova, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Belgium
  • Professor Mechthild M. Gross, Medizinische Hochschule Hannover, Germany
  • Associate Prof. Peter Waiswa, Makerere University, Uganda
  • Dr. Effie Chipeta, University of Malawi, College of Medicine, The Centre for Reproductive Health, Malawi
  • Professor Andrea B. Pembe, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Tanzania
  • Professor Hussein Kidanto, Aga Khan University, Medical College, East Africa
  • Jean-Paul Dossou, Centre de Recherche en Reproduction Humaine et en Démographie (CERRHUD), Benin


Claudia Hanson

Project coordinator
K9 Department of Global Public Health