Preconception care: An essential preventive strategy to improve children's and women's health

Boukje Zee, Inez Beaufort, Sevilay Temel, GMWR (Guido) de Wert, Semiha Denktas, EAP Steegers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Reproductive health has improved little in the last few decades. The Netherlands, particularly in large cities, has relatively high perinatal death rates compared with other European countries. Lack of improvement in reproductive outcomes despite improved quality of and better access to prenatal care strongly suggests that prenatal care alone is insufficient. We discuss how preconception care offers new strategies for improving reproductive health, how it usefully connects the life course of the affected individual and many health-care disciplines, and the benefits of combining a top-down policy structure and bottom-up organisation around caregivers. Given the likely benefits and cost savings calculated for the Netherlands, we conclude that failing to facilitate preconception care would reflect a breakdown of both professional and governmental responsibilities. Journal of Public Health Policy (2011) 32, 367-379. doi:10.1057/jphp.2011.13;published online 10 March 2011
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)367-379
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Public Health Policy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011

Research programs

  • EMC MGC-02-52-01-A
  • EMC OR-01-74-01

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