Stunting, a result of chronic nutritional deficiency, is a problem of larger proportion than other forms of under nutrition and a particular public health concern in the region owing to its high prevalence. It poses significant risk to the normal intellectual development of children and compromises the economic productivity of adults. Nine out of 32 countries that contribute to the global burden of stunting are located in countries supported by USAID/EA.
Since 2002, the USAID/EA Office of Regional Health and HIV/AIDS has been developing the capacity of African partners to improve and expand Tuberculosis (TB) prevention, diagnosis and treatment programs.
East Africa faces considerable challenges in family planning and reproductive health (FP/RH). The region has countries with the highest maternal mortality rates in the world, with many reporting over 500 deaths per 100,000 live births. The region also shows slow contraceptive use (with a regional average of 20%). Average family size is high and most women have between five and six children in their lifetime. As a result of a large proportion of the target population having unmet needs in family planning, many unintended pregnancies and unsafe deliveries impeded progress in meeting Millennium Development and FP/RH goals.
East African transport corridors, particularly highways, are economic lifelines but also major routes for HIV transmission. Fifty percent of the population along regional transport corridors is transient and impoverished. Poor health indicators correlate with being underserved by the formal health system. A recent study revealed that unemployment levels along these corridors approaches 70 percent. In some communities, 78 percent of females have turned to commercial sex work for a livelihood; HIV prevalence among truck drivers was twice as high as in the general population.
The REGI program focuses on two Presidential Initiatives–Feed the Future (FTF) and Global Climate Change (GCC)–and incorporates complementary work implementing the African Competitiveness and Trade Expansion (ACTE) Initiative in intra-regional and export trade, investment, and regional integration. Regional Water and biodiversity conservation programming complete the REGI portfolio.
Last updated: February 03, 2016