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01.12.2018 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth 1/2018

Construction and pilot test of a set of indicators to assess the implementation and effectiveness of the who safe childbirth checklist

BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth > Ausgabe 1/2018
Pedro J. Saturno-Hernández, María Fernández-Elorriaga, Ismael Martínez-Nicolás, Ofelia Poblano-Verástegui
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1186/​s12884-018-1797-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



The World Health Organization (WHO) launched the “Safe Childbirth Checklist (SCC) Collaboration” in 2012. The SCC is designed to contribute to quality care by providing reminders of evidence-based practices for the prevention and management of the leading causes of maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality. However, indicators to monitor the implementation and effectiveness of the SCC have not been defined. This study aimed to produce and pilot test a set of valid, reliable and feasible indicators to assess the implementation and effectiveness of the SCC, with an emphasis on best practices.


As part of the WHO Collaboration, the SCC was adapted to the Mexican context, and a set of indicators was developed to assess the SCC use and adherence to SCC-related best practices. The indicators were pilot tested in three hospitals for feasibility and reliability using the prevalence- and bias-adjusted kappa index (PABAK) for multiple independent evaluators (initial sample, n = 47; second sample, n = 30 to re-test reliability). The data sources were clinical records and cognitive tests drawn from questionnaires to mothers and health professionals.


We generated 53 indicators, and 38 of the indicators (those related to best practices and outcomes) were pilot tested. Of these, 26 relate to care for the mother (20 were measured based on clinical records and 6 via questionnaire), and 12 relate to newborn care (9 were medical record-based and 3 were from questionnaires). Feasible indicators were generally also reliable (PABAK≥0.6). Routine feasibility is affected by the frequency of assessed events.


The generated indicators allow an assessment of the implementation and effectiveness of the SCC and the monitoring of quality of care during childbirth and the immediate postpartum period.
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