Educational films increased maternal and newborn health knowledge in remote regions in Nepal, research finds

New research published on Women’s Health and conducted by One Heart Worldwide and Medical Aid Films shows that socio-culturally adapted educational films increased maternal and newborn health knowledge in pregnant women and female community health volunteers in Nepal’s Khotang district.  

For the study, researchers interviewed 101 pregnant women and 39 Female Community Health Volunteers from four remote locations with a comparatively high number of annual pregnancies. The results show there was a significant improvement in knowledge on maternal and newborn health issues in both audiences after watching the educational films. 

While Nepal has made significant improvements in maternal and newborn health overall, the lack of maternal and newborn health knowledge in the more rural parts of the country has led to significant disparities in health outcomes

The new research adds to growing evidence around the effectiveness of integrating films into health education and training in low resource settings.  

Helen Coombe, Head of Evaluation and Research at Medical Aid Films, said

We know that women and their families value information about pregnancy, birth and caring for newborns that is contextualised and in their own language. The films help to overcome literacy barriers so that everyone in the community can understand how to care for pregnant women and their babies and when to seek support from skilled health workers.”  

Sajana Maharjan, Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Officer at One Heart Worldwide said

“We adapted four maternal and newborn health videos in the socio-cultural context of Nepal and then piloted them among pregnant women living in rural communities of Nepal. We found that the film was helpful in improving their overall knowledge level, regarding antenatal care, transportation incentives, danger signs during pregnancy, and essential newborn care, especially for women with a low literacy level.”


  1. Medical Aid Films (MAF) is a registered charity, established in 2007, is an organisation that brings together health experts with creative content makers to create engaging, accessible digital content, empowering health workers and communities with vital knowledge and skills. 
  2. One Heart Worldwide (OHW) is a registered 501(c)(3), established in 2004, transforming maternal and neonatal healthcare across Nepal. OHW’s goal in Nepal is to improve access to quality MNH care for 250,000 pregnancies annually by the end of 2030 (⅓ of all annual pregnancies in Nepal) with programs focusing on the more vulnerable populations of 36 underserved rural districts.  
  3. Contact information: Helen Coombe, Head of Evaluation and Research.