This is the protocol for a systematic review which will look more closely into interventions designed to address delays in referral and to assess the effects of the relevant (primary level) referral system interventions. The delays of interest in this review are those experienced between making the decision to seek care and in reaching the appropriate level of facility (known as Phase II delays). The review will focus on referral to access emergency obstetric care from home to basic level health facilities (health centres) and from health centre to hospital (but not referral between hospitals). It is expected to include a wide range of different types of interventions, such as: means of improving transport and communications, technologies for improving access to specialist skills, strengthening linkages between social networks training for referral and outreach interventions to bring care closer to the community level.
The protocol provides background information and details of the methods to be used.
University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK, 18 pp.