Evidence to Policy

Completed and ongoing researches


Title/main objective of the



Regional state Name of PI Research Organization
1 KMC Implementation Research for Accelerating scale up Amhara Dr. Abebe Gebremariam RHB + Emory Uni
Tigray Dr. Araya Abrha Mekelle University
SNNPR Dr. Henok Tadele Hawassa University
Oromia Mr. Abiy Seifu Addis Ababa University + Harvard University
2 Causes of Illness in Preterm Infants in Ethiopia Addis Ababa, Gondar and Jimma (5 hospitals) Prof. Lulu Muhe AAU, SPHMMC, Gandi,
3 Enhanced Community case management to increase access to pneumonia treatment (iCCM Plus) Districts of Wogera, Dabat, Debark & Janamora in Gondar Dr. Zemene Tigabu University of Gondar
4 Optimizing the Health Extension Program (OHEP) - the Dagu Project 51 Woredas and 10 Zones in SNNPR, Oromia, Amhara and Tigray Prof. Lars Åke Persson (Lars.Persson@lshtm.ac.uk) LSHTM, EPHI, Mekelle Uni, Jimma Uni, Gondar Uni and Hawassa Uni
5 Innovative approach to simplified management of sick young infants with PSBI where referral is not possible for potential scale up Tigray Dr. Abadi Mekele University
Oromia (Jimma) Dr. Melkamu Birhanu Jimma University
6 CHAMP Haramaya University DSS districts Dr. Nega Asefa Haramaya University
7 Determinants of uptake of family planning methods in the four emerging regions in Ethiopia Somali, Benshangul Gumuz, Afar and Gambella Dr. Dilayehu

Saint Paul MMC





National Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health andNutrition Research Priorities 2019-2021

Research Advisory Council (RAC)

The Reproductive, Maternal, Child, and Adolescent Health/Nutrition (RMNCAH/N) Research Advisory Council started as National advisory group (NAG) for reproductive health meant to function as a unit in Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI on Jan 2010. It was later repurposed and housed itself at the Maternal and Child Health Directorate (MCHD) with a refined terms of reference (ToR) since April 2015. Hence, the Directorate took the responsibility of coordinating and using the platform to facilitate evidence to policy translation in its work. The platform has effectively served the purpose of bridging the gap between policymakers and researchers in universities and research institutions. 

The RAC is made up of more than 70 researchers and practitioners from universities, partner organizations and the MCHD. It is organized into 7 thematic groups corresponding to the areas of work of the Directorate. The operation of the RAC is organized by the RAC Secretariat being led by a Senior Research Advisor (SRA) who routinely supports and follow up the activities of the RAC. 

Each of the thematic group takes up at least one policy relevant question for consideration every Ethiopian fiscal year. Policy relevant questions are posed or forwarded by a case team of the MCHD to the appropriate thematic group of the RAC during the regular annual planning meeting of the RAC. The questions are deliberated on and refined to make sure that the RAC supplies the answers for the real policy question being asked by the policymakers. Once agreement is reach on the question, the respective thematic group carries out analysis of already existing data or synthesize relevant previous studies to generate usable evidence to guide decision making at the Directorate. The RAC members also engage in the design, conduct and follow up of priority researches commissioned by the MCHD in collaboration with its partners.

List of  members

Monthly Agelgil Session

There is a need for cultivating the culture of turning to research evidence while making policy decisions at the MCH Directorate, MOH. Staff at the Directorate is very busy in taking care of the routine activities of organizing and implementing trainings, supervision and mentoring activities, mobilizing resources, monitoring activities and report writing. With this tight schedule the staff have little time to look for and read through all relevant publications and research reports out there. Hence, the staff hugely benefits from a regular scientific forum where research evidence relevant to their program activities are presented by experts within and outside the Directorate. 
The ‘Agelgil Session’ idea was suggested by Fenot - Harvard School of Public Health team to Dr. Ephrem Tekle (Director of the Directorate by then). The Director embraced the idea and agreed with the initiation of the event right away. The first ‘Agelgil’ session was held on April 4, 2018.


  • To keep the staff of the Directorate informed about upcoming research evidence relevant to maternal, neonatal, child, adolescent and reproductive health and nutrient related issues.
  • To initiate the staff of the Directorate to search and use up-to-date national, regional and global research evidence while making decision in the design and implementation of RMNCAH/N initiatives in the country.
  • To inform policy and guideline development at the Directorate with up to date contextualized research evidence generated by stakeholders.

How are the sessions organized?
The sessions happen at least once every month (usually 3rd week of the month) on Wednesdays at 11am and for about 60-90 minutes. The researcher does a presentation of about 25 minutes with focus on key findings and recommendations for action. Question and answer session of about an hour follows the presentation. The ‘Agelgils’ (lunch boxes) are provided at the end of the session to everyone who attended. The cost of the ‘Agelgils’ and water is being covered by the Fenot Project of the Harvard School of Public Health/School of Population and Public Health of UBC. 

National RMNCAH/N Research Conference
The overall aim of the research conference is to create a platform of identification, scrutiny and sharing of current research evidence related to RMNCAH/N in Ethiopia and beyond. More specifically, we intend to

  • Identify high quality research reports related to RMNCAH/N in Ethiopia and beyond
  • Organize oral and poster presentation sessions to share findings of selected research reports
  • Create networking opportunities for researchers, partners, policymakers and professional associations

The conference was first held in August 2017 and the second happened on August 2019. Hence, we intend to do it every 2 years and we have planned the 3rd conference for August 2021.

Proceeding and Book of Abstracts of the 2nd RMNCAH/N Research Conference