Community health workers in Madagascar review patient data. Photo Credit: Samy Rakotoniaina/MSH

When community health programs are well-designed, managed, and sufficiently funded, they can yield substantial health and economic benefits. In addition to contributing to a healthier, more productive population, they can reduce the risk of costly epidemics while generating substantial cost savings for families and health systems (1). On the other hand, when poorly designed or managed and insufficiently funded, community health programs can fail to improve poor health outcomes and advance national health priorities.

Recognizing their potential in strengthening primary care and advancing Universal Health Coverage, countries are increasingly formalizing the role of the community health worker within their health systems. In fact, many countries have passed national community health policies to ensure that community health workers (CHWs) are well trained, incentivized, and equipped to provide a basic package of life-saving services within their communities.

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Community Health Planning and Costing Tool

 {Photo credit: UHC2030}Nana Taona Kuo, Senior Health Adviser, Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General (Right), and Dr. Akihito Watabe, Health Financing Officer, Health Systems Governance and Financing, World Health Organization.Photo credit: UHC2030

 On September 23, Management Sciences for Health, UHC2030, and the Civil Society Engagement Mechanism (CSEM) held a “Toast to the UHC Movement” on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly.Professor Keizo Takemi, WHO Goodwill Ambassador for UHC, opened the reception. Photo credit: UHC2030Ms. Vidhya Ganesh, Deputy Director, Programme Division, UNICEF, gives a toast to the Alma Ata Declaration.

 {Photo credit: Flor Truchi/MSH}Anna Mzeru, Assistant Nursing Officer at Yombo Dispensary in Bagamoyo, Tanzania, shows facility data for HIV-positive patients, including those lost to follow-up and those currently on first- or second-line antiretroviral treatment.Photo credit: Flor Truchi/MSH

By Megan MontgomeryDays are long for Anna Mzeru.A nurse at a health dispensary in the Bagamoyo region of Tanzania, she is one of only two medical staff at a facility that should have nine to be fully staffed. She and the other provider see as many as 120 patients per day, and attend an average of 15 deliveries per month. “We sometimes leave very late, but we can’t leave the patients here. They need to be seen,” she says.The significant shortage of health workers at the clinic is common. Tanzania has a 56% vacancy rate across both public and private health care facilities.

{Photo credit: Samy Rakotoniaina/MSH}Photo credit: Samy Rakotoniaina/MSH

>>Cliquez ici pour lire l'annonce en français Awards totaling nearly $600,000 to improve women’s, children’s, and adolescents’ health made to civil society coalitions in nine countries.Management Sciences for Health (MSH), the Global Financing Facility (GFF), and the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (PMNCH) are pleased to announce the recipients of the first round of funding from the Small Grants Mechanism to support civil society engagement, alignment, and coordinated action for improved women’s, children’s, and adolescents&rs

 {Photo Credit: Pablo Romo/MSH}Iginia Badillo delivered her child at Huasca Health Center under the care of midwifery interns supported by the FCI program of MSH.Photo Credit: Pablo Romo/MSH

This story was originally published by Global Health NOW

After decades of effort by the global health community and governments, more women are giving birth in health facilities than ever, and maternal and newborn mortality have declined since 1990.

But global and country-level averages hide a tragic, more complex story: Even in countries where 80% of births take place in health facilities or are attended by skilled health workers, maternal mortality often remains high.

Many of these deaths could be prevented. In the 81 countries with the highest maternal and neonatal mortality rates, well-functioning health systems would prevent 520,000 stillbirths, and save the lives of 670,000 babies and 86,000 women by 2020—even at current rates of access to maternal and newborn health services, according to the November 2018 report from The Lancet Global Health Commission for High-Quality Health Systems.

 {Photo Credit: Warren Zelman}A mother holds her newborn at a hospital in Mwene-Ditu, Democratic Republic of the CongoPhoto Credit: Warren Zelman

By Kimberly Whipkey, Advocacy Manager, White Ribbon AllianceThis story was originally published by the White Ribbon AllianceNearly five years into the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) era, maternal mortality rates worldwide are still unacceptably high. Why?It’s not for a lack of technical know-how.

 {Photo credit: Kenza Abu-Arja/MSH}From left to right: Chris Collins; Loyce Pace; Willo Brock.Photo credit: Kenza Abu-Arja/MSH

On July 16, Management Sciences for Health (MSH), in conjunction with the office of Congressman Ami Bera (D-CA), hosted “The rising threat of antimicrobial resistance: What happens when diseases resist the drugs that we’ve designed to fight them?” to discuss antimicrobial resistance (AMR), its consequences, and the efforts needed to fight it. This event, the second in a series on global health security funded by the James M. and Cathleen D.

Left to right: Dr. Daniel Gemechu, Regional Director for CTB/Ethiopia , Dr. Ahmed Bedru, Country Director for CTB/Ethiopia , Mr. Taye Letta, National TB Program Manager, Dr. Liya Tadesse, State Minister of Health, Dr. Kitty van Weezenbeek, Executive Director of KNCV and Dr. Pedro Suarez, Senior Director, Infectious Disease Cluster at MSH.

At last week’s end of project ceremony, the USAID-funded Challenge TB project celebrated improvements in Ethiopia’s ability to save lives by detecting, diagnosing, and treating TB more effectively.Under this five-year program, USAID invested $42 million to improve the quality of TB care and prevention services, enabling patients to receive better access to treatment and medication to fight the disease. TB deaths have dropped significantly as treatment success rates rose above 90%, with 75% of those suffering from multidrug-resistant TB now able to beat the disease after comple

Pfizer Global Health Fellow, Megan Montgomery, and Peter Mmbago, Human Resources for Health Advisor for TSSP, interview a health care provider in Bagamoyo, Tanzania.

Meet Megan Montgomery, one of two impressive Pfizer Global Health Fellows currently working with MSH in Tanzania. This international corporate volunteer program places Pfizer colleagues in short-term fellowships with international development organizations. Megan is lending her skills and expertise in marketing and business strategy to MSH’s Technical Support Services Project (TSSP) in Tanzania, which provides assistance to the Ministry of Health in key technical areas to help control the HIV epidemic and sustain HIV-related health systems and services. 

How are you supporting the TSSP project in Tanzania?

My main focus while here is partnering with the team to strengthen the health system in Tanzania through human resources for health (HRH) activities, such as the implementation of task-sharing initiatives, recruitment, retention and productivity management, as well as developing communication pieces to share the work being accomplished.  

Can you explain what task sharing for HIV services looks like in this context? 

 {Photo credit: David J. Olson}Madame Togo Kadiatou Mallé, president of Muso Yiriwa Ton.Photo credit: David J. Olson

by David OlsonThis story was originally published by K4Health The first five times the sales manager of Keneya Jemu Kan came looking for Madame Togo Kadiatou Mallé to talk about her women’s association selling condoms and other health products, she ran away and hid, so terrified was she of the prospect of having to work with condoms.But the sales manager’s persistence paid off. Eventually, they talked, and Madame Togo has become such an enthusiastic condom promoter, she is known as Mama Condom.

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