Critical Non-Ebola Health Services

USAID partner Jhpiego is working closely with health care workers to ensure that basic health services are accessible to those m
USAID partner Jhpiego is working closely with health care workers to ensure that basic health services are accessible to those most in need.

USAID is working closely with partner governments and other donors to ensure that basic non-Ebola health services are accessible to those most in need, respond appropriately to future public health crises and work towards achieving our ultimate goal of ending extreme poverty.

 

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The Ebola outbreak devastated lives and livelihoods in some of the most vulnerable countries in the world, infecting over 28,600 people in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, and killing over 11,300. The epidemic, which traces its origins to Guinea in December 2013, was the largest recorded Ebola outbreak in history.

The three Ebola-affected countries faced several challenges in addressing the epidemic early on, including resistance to Ebola control efforts in communities, the presence of Ebola in urban settings, inadequate treatment facilities, and lack of training on infection prevention and control.

The Ebola outbreak significantly reduced basic health care services in the three countries, including infant delivery, maternal care, and treatment of common diseases like malaria. Moreover, fear of contracting Ebola prompted people to avoid seeking medical care at healthcare centers, reducing the impact of efforts to effectively address the outbreak.

USAID is working closely with partner governments and other donors to ensure that basic health services are accessible to those most in need and health systems are prepared to respond appropriately and adequately to future public health crises. We support upgrading key non-Ebola health services to pre-Ebola levels, including immunization, maternal and child health, and water and sanitation.

USAID is ensuring health facilities are restored and fully functioning to provide a package of essential primary health care services through equipment procurement, basic rehabilitation of facilities, strengthened infection prevention and control and training of health facility workers. We are also working to rebuild public trust in the health system and demand for health care services by involving communities in facility rehabilitation, and promoting healthy behaviors post-Ebola through community engagement activities, strengthened national communication platforms, and radio education programs.

  • In general, we are supporting more than 500 health facilities in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. Further, USAID-supported programs have resulted in improvements in IPC protocols and practices in the three countries, and increases in the number of visits to facilities where we are supporting training, community outreach, and clinic renovations. In addition, health centers that participate in staff training are developing their own learning environments, creating tools and materials to teach others.
  • In Liberia we are supporting the restoration of primary health care services in 77 health facilities in three counties. We trained more than 1,200 community health workers and 1,500 community health volunteers in IPC protocols and medical procedures. We launched the Healthy Life brand nationally that supports community engagement in health services, which includes a health promotion program aired on radio stations in the country.
  • In Sierra Leone, we are supporting the restoration of primary care services in 285 facilities in five priority districts with projected coverage of about 50 percent of the population. We are also helping to renovate 20 health facilities for IPC and water, sanitation, and hygiene improvements. We helped train more than 300 health post staff on maternal and child health care, safe delivery, and newborn care from April to June of 2016.
  • In Guinea we are supporting 221 facilities in 5 regions. We also completed two rehabilitations of health care centers in the country, and partnered with the Ministry of Health to launch a Gold Star campaign signaling high‐quality health services. We are also supporting IPC training and coaching for more than 2,800 health care workers and support staff. We have also produced and aired 38 radio programs on several topics, including antenatal services, child immunization, Gold Star services promotion, client rights, and health services costs. We also distributed nearly 400 phones in 15 prefectures for referral, coordination, reporting, and data collection to track usage.

Last updated: January 31, 2017

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