Changes in reproductive, maternal, and child health in Haiti during the pre- and peri-COVID-19 pandemic

Joseph et al.


To assess changes in reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health (RMNCAH) in Haiti from August 2018 to September 2021, before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.


A retrospective study using surveillance data from the Haitian Unique Health Information System, examining two periods: pre- and peri-COVID-19 pandemic. Health indicators at the national level in the two periods were compared using two-sample t-tests for proportions, and average absolute monthly changes were calculated using variance-weighted regression.


There was a statistically significant decline in the proportion of most of the indicators assessed from the pre- to the peri-COVID-19 pandemic period. However, the most affected indicators were the proportions of pregnant women with four antenatal care visits, with five antenatal care visits or more, and those who received a second dose of tetanus vaccine, which decreased by over 4 percentage points during the two periods. Likewise, the proportions of children who received diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTaP), BCG, polio, pentavalent, and rotavirus vaccines also all declined by over 8 percentage points. In contrast, pneumococcal conjugate vaccine increased by over 4 percentage points. A statistically significant decrease was also observed in the average absolute monthly changes of several reproductive and child health indicators assessed.


The COVID-19 pandemic may have contributed to the decline observed in several RMNCAH indicators in Haiti. However, the role played by the sociopolitical crisis and control exercised by armed groups over the population in the last three years cannot be ruled out.

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