National Advocacy on Healthcare Service
Advocacy on Healthcare Service for Rural Pregnant Women, Lactating Mothers
NMDHR Trains Free Health Care Monitors & Women’s O
31-Aug-2012, by Abdul Karim Habib, NMDHR, via web
NMDHR Trains Free Health Care Monitors & Women’s Org. By Abdul Karim Habib (Programme Manager NMDHR)
The Network Work Movement for Democracy and Human Rights , a non Governmental Organization partnering with CORDAID Netherland has train Eighty (80) Free Health Care Monitors and different women groups in three District in the country from nine Chiefdoms in the Koinadugu, Pujehun and Kailahun Districts, of Sierra Leone.
The interactive training session that lasted from the 7th August to the 8th August, 2012 brought together the targeted project partners from Wara Wara Yangala, Kosunko, Sengbeh bandajuma sowa, Kpangakbonde, Futerpejeh, Kiss Kama, Kiss Tenge, Kiss Tungi and Luwa Chiefdoms so as to get an insight into the efficient and effective ways of monitoring the Free Health Care Delivery System.
Speaking to the Programme Manager, Mr. Abdul Karim Habib, the organization, Network Work Movement for Democracy and Human Rights is working closely with Marie Stopes, Plan Parenthood Association Sierra Leone(PPASL) and the Christian Brothers in Pujehun. With a Head Office in Freetown, they operate in Kailahun and Pujehun Districts.
According to one of the Project Officer, Madam Jamilatu Turay, the training fused on the project partners getting a proper knowledge on the background of the Free Health Care Delivery System in the country.
As it targets Pregnant and Lactating Women and Young Children, participants at the end of the training were grounded on the five (5) interventions of the Free Health Care and the services provided.
The project partners were educated on the roles of Civil Society Organizations in the implementation of the Free Health Care System. During the two days training, the monitors and Women organization were exposed to Training Manual, Flip chart and flip chart stand, markers, pen, pencil, notepads in the exercise. According to Madam Turay, the following Methodologies were used to make the training an interactive session; Brainstorming, Presentations, Discussion, Group work, exercise, Role play and End of Session evaluation.
Speaking on the background to the FREE HEALTH CARE she said that the Government of Sierra Leone, with support from development partners launched the Free Health Care services on 27th April, 2010. The Free health Care Initiative was developed by the Government of Sierra Leone and its Development Partners to jointly implement the National Policy of Free Health Care services for pregnant women, lactating mothers and children under 5 years of age. The National Policy of Free Health Care Services (NPFHCS) focuses on an essential package of healthcare services that is delivered free of charge at the point of service to ensure a significant improvement in Maternal and Child Health (MCH).
The objective of the Free Health Care Services is to abolish all charges to pregnant women, lactating mothers and children under 5 years of age. Madam Turay went on to state that the initiative is divided into two phases: The first phase is the provision of free quality health care to pregnant women, lactating mothers and children under 5 years of age. The second phase aims to provide universal access to free quality health care for all vulnerable groups. The government commits to increase its financing to the health sector in-line with the Abuja Declaration by 2012 and to develop new financing mechanisms including a Social Health Insurance Scheme.
At the end of the training session, the monitors and women’ s group made the following recommendations; the provision of more drugs and medical staff to handle the growing number of patients in the Primary Health Care Units. The procurement and supply chain management system of medical supplies to be strengthened so as to ensure sufficient drugs and other medical supplies are available at point of use. Increase the number of healthcare workers, and introduce performance-based incentives to promote quality healthcare services, and top up salaries as an interim measure. There is the need to strengthen co-ordination and management at all levels to ensure transparency, efficiency, and monitor performance. The Policy of the FHC communicated to all stakeholders to allow people to exercise their rights to free healthcare. Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) are to establish a functional committee that will interact and interface with key stake holders in the community to ensure an effective and efficient implementation of the FHC using the National Policy of Free Health Care Services (NPFHCS) as a Terms of Reference. Ensure that the Policy of the FHC is communicated to all stakeholders and community members to ensure the effective and efficient utilization of the free healthcare. Ensure that drugs and medical supplies sent to their communities are accounted for based on the supply chain management system. Develop evidence based data collection tools in collaboration with key stake holders to ensure effective and efficient utilization of resources (drugs, medical supplies, logistics and human resources) and the provision of ambulances to transport patients to medical centres.
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