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Washington, DC, July 15, 2018 (PAHO/WHO) - The Pan American Health Organization held a workshop to train interprogrammatic teams from 14 countries in the Americas in the use of the Assessment of Essential Conditions tool for maternal health services, and the methodology for developing local intervention plans.

The purpose of the event was to prepare participants in the methodology and use of the tool to identify and analyze barriers to access and the quality of maternal care in health services.

Developed in 2013, the Assessment of Essential Conditions (AEC) for health services tool responds to emerging approaches and practices in the management dynamics of health services. The tool guides the optimal organization and management of services within the framework of health systems based on Primary Health Care and Integrated Health Services Network.


Also, the AEC provides elements to facilitate the analysis of relevance, quality of care, control of results and management agreements. Its main objective is to identify opportunities for improvement in the dynamics of health care and the development of health services with a focus on sustainability, efficiency, quality and safety of health care. The AEC tool is available online at:

During the workshop, participants learned about the validation of the instruments for the AEC of maternal health services, the design of baselines of care, care for women and pregnant women in health services, and the validation of the methodology for the preparation of local intervention plans.

Forty professionals from Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Paraguay, and Venezuela participated in the workshop. The initiative is part of PAHO's strategies to support priority countries in their actions to strengthen maternal health.