Recently, Bangladesh has made remarkable progress in reducing maternal and neonatal morality, even though the millennium developmental goal to reduce maternal and neonatal mortality was not achieved. Sustainable Developmental Goal (SDG) 3 has already been set for a new target to reduce maternal and neonatal deaths by 2030. The country takes this timely initiative to introduce a maternal and perinatal death review system. This review will discuss the shifting paradigm of the maternal and perinatal death review system in Bangladesh and its challenges in reaching the SDG on time. This review uses existing literature on the maternal and perinatal death review system in Bangladesh, and other systems in similar settings, as well as reports, case studies, news, government letters and meeting minutes. Bangladesh introduced the maternal and perinatal death review system in 2010. Prior to this there was no such comprehensive death review system practiced in Bangladesh. The system was established within the government health system and has brought about positive effects and outcomes. Therefore, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of Bangladesh gradually scaled up the maternal and perinatal death review system nationwide in 2016 within the government health system. The present death review system highlighted real-time data use, using the district health information software(DHIS-2). Health mangers are able to take remedial action plans and implement strategies based on findings in DHIS-2. Therefore, effective utilization of data can play a pivotal role in the reduction of maternal and perinatal deaths in Bangladesh. Overall, the maternal and perinatal death review system provides a great opportunity to achieve the SDG 3 on time. However, the system needs continuous monitoring at different levels to ensure its quality and validity of information, as well as effective utilization of findings for planning and implementation under a measureable accountability framework.
Keywords: Bangladesh; Maternal death; death review system; neonatal death.