Affordable and low-maintenance obstetric devices

Diogo Ayres‐de‐Campos, William Stones, Gerhard Theron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Adequate obstetric care requires the availability of essential diagnostic and management equipment; however, for centers with budget restrictions, the acquisition and maintenance of these devices can pose major challenges. The purpose of the present paper is to disseminate knowledge about the availability of affordable and low‐maintenance obstetric devices, which might help to save lives in low‐ and medium‐resource countries.

Over the course of 2015–2018, the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) Safe Motherhood and Newborn Health Committee acquired information from different clinical and commercial sources regarding the availability of affordable and low‐maintenance essential obstetric devices.

The Committee identified several devices that met the criteria of low cost and ease of maintenance: a winding handheld Doppler device for intermittent auscultation; a portable continuous fetal heart rate monitor; a validated semi‐automated blood pressure monitor; the Foley catheter balloon for labor induction in women with an unfavorable cervix; reusable metal and plastic vacuum cups and manual pumps; an intrauterine tamponade balloon; and the non‐pneumatic anti‐shock garment.

Several affordable and low‐maintenance obstetric devices are currently available that offer the potential to save lives in resource‐constrained settings.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-28
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics
Issue number1
Early online date4 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2019


  • child birth
  • fetal heart rate monitoring
  • handheld doppler
  • labour induction
  • maternity services
  • pre-eclampsia
  • prenatal care
  • safe motherhood


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