WHO recommendations on home-based records for maternal, newborn and child health
A home-based record is a health document used to record the history of health services received by an individual. It is kept in the household, in either paper or electronic format, by the individual or their caregiver and is intended to be integrated into the health information system and complement records maintained by health facilities.
They range from antenatal notes or vaccination-only cards, progressing to more expanded vaccination-plus cards, child health books or integrated maternal and child health books, which often include health education messages. While home-based records have been widely implemented for decades, the evidence of the benefits and harms has not been systematically reviewed and summarized.
This report summarizes the final recommendation and the process for developing the guideline on home-based records for maternal, newborn and child health. The primary audience for the guideline is policy makers and health programme managers of MNCH and immunization programmes in ministries of health where decisions are made and policies created on the use and implementation of homebased records.
The guideline is also aimed at health providers who use home-based records as a tool for recording information and providing health education or communicating key information. Development and international agencies and non-governmental organizations that support the implementation of home-based records will also find this guideline of use.