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Lessons from the world's first development impact bond for maternal health

Engaging with Evidence is a series of interactive online convenings hosted by the GO Lab and designed to encourage a greater understanding of the latest evidence on the use of cross-sector partnerships focused on outcomes. Throughout 2021, this webinar series will offer an open platform for policymakers, practitioners and researchers around the world to engage with key findings from the latest research and evaluation work in the field. Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • discuss new evidence directly with the authors of research and evaluation studies; 
  • hear the practical insights of the partners involved in the development and implementation of the projects under discussion; and 
  • reflect on the relevance of the evidence to their own work.

Building independent, high-quality evidence

At the GO Lab we believe in the importance of building independent, high-quality evidence and disseminating it effectively to inform policy decisions and improve practice on the ground. As new evidence around the use of outcomes-based approaches is starting to emerge, we hope that with this series of online convenings we can continue to bridge the gap between evidence and practice. The series aims to foster real dialogue between policymakers, practitioners and researchers in an honest, transparent and constructive way. Both veterans and explorers interested in better understanding the latest evidence around the use of outcomes-based approaches are welcome to join these sessions.

What to expect

Each session will last 90 minutes and will feature a distillation of key findings, reflections from a diverse panel of experts, as well as ample time for contributions and questions from all participants. Topics that we will explore as part of this series include: lessons from Latin America around building a SIB ecosystem, evidence from the implementation of development impact bonds in low- and middle- income countries, insights from the experience with impact bonds in the UK, insights around the use of social outcomes contracting in Europe, learning from the design and implementation of outcomes funds. 

Our sessions will be chaired by Andreea Anastasiu, Policy and Engagement Manager (GO Lab), and Tanyah Hameed, Research and Policy Associate (GO Lab). All sessions are free to attend and open to all, but will be of particular interest to policymakers and other practitioners interested in developing sustainable, system-wide outcomes-based approaches.  

If you’d like to suggest a topic or highlight a recent study that you’d like to see discussed on a future session, please contact our moderators Andreea Anastasiu or Tanyah Hameed.

Session recording

Session recording

Listen to the audio recording of the session.

Session overview 

The session provided implementation insights from the main stakeholders involved in the Utkrisht development impact bond, the world's first maternal and newborn health impact bond. We drew on Mathematica's recent midline report which outlines findings and insights from this experiment in innovative finance for maternal health. 

We were joined by a leading panel of speakers from across the globe. They brought expertise on social innovation, global health, health financing and international development, as well as their own practical experience working on impact bonds. 


The Utkrisht Impact Bond

Launched in 2018, the Utkrisht Impact Bond is the world's first maternal and newborn health impact bond. It aims to reach up to 600,000 pregnant women and newborns in Rajasthan, India with improved care during delivery over a five year period. The DIB is funding two service providers, Hindustan Latex Family Planning Promotion Trust (HLFPPT) and Population Services International (PSI), to support private facilities to improve the quality of care provided to mothers and newborns, and prepare for certification by NABH and Manyata. 

To find out more on the Utkrisht Impact Bond, read our case study.

About the report

The Utkrisht Impact Bond is a development impact bond designed to improve the quality of maternity care offered by private providers in Rajasthan, India. This collaboration between MSD for Mothers, UBS Optimus Foundation, USAID and Palladium is one of only a few active impact bonds for health in the world. At its midpoint, Mathematica, Utkrisht’s independent verification assessor, has developed a report outlining findings and insights from this experiment in innovative finance for maternal health. This report offers important insights for stakeholders considering the application of impact bond financing mechanisms for health. The launch of the midline report will be complemented with a virtual panel to underscore insights and lessons learned at Utkrisht’s midpoint.