Maternal and child health is a major health concern in the lower reaches of southern
Thailand. This action research was aimed at developing an integrated, participatory model
for solving problems related to maternal and child health in Kapho district, Pattani Province.
The model incorporated several activities, namely promoting community participation
through, for example, participatory community development for solving problems
related to maternal and child health; increasing access to maternal care through, for
example, promoting the delivery of newborns in the hospital by providing incentives for the pregnant women and traditional birth attendants (TBAs); and improving the quality
of maternal care through, for example, developing antenatal care clinic (ANC) and laborroom
services to meet with the safe motherhood project standard, the arrangement of a
place for Muslim ceremonies for the newborn in the hospital, training TBAs about postpartum
care, including ancient Thai massage and hot herbal compression.
The outcomes were assessed by ANC visits at least four times and delivery in the
hospital in comparison to the Department of Health standard of 90 percent of such visits
and deliveries. During the period from 1999 to 2007, the results clearly demonstrated
continuous improvement. In that period, the percentages of pregnant women attending
ANC at least four times were 78.9, 89.0, 93.4, 94, 97.5, 97.5, 98.4, 95.4 and 98.1, respectively.
The percentages of pregnant women delivering in the hospital were 52.1, 54.6, 63.7, 72.4,
81.5, 91.8, 97.1, 97.5 and 97.6, respectively. This study has shown a successful model of
maternal and child health problem-solving using the Plan-Do-Check-Act process,
multidisciplinary integration and community participation.