APC's Sustaining Health Facility Improvements (SHFI) program in Sierra Leone aims to engage communities, health service providers, and district authorities in building better systems, structures, and processes for conducting maintenance and preventive maintenance of health facilities by mobilizing community and government resources to fund it. This booklet provides stories of the work the FMCs and their communities have done, as they devote their time, resources, and energy to maintaining and improving their community PHUs.
On June 13, 2019, the APC project brought together partners and stakeholder to celebrate the conclusion of the Sustaining Health Facility Improvements Program, which helped strengthen the health system and increase resilience by supporting sustainable, community-led activities.
In July 2016, the USAID-funded APC project launched the Strengthening Health Services post-Ebola (SHSPE) program. Implemented by JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., the program was initiated to support the Comprehensive Program for Ebola Survivors (CPES) and prevent further Ebola virus disease transmission by reducing the risks of resurgence; providing clinical services to survivors; and defining strategies to reducing stigma, discrimination, and other barriers to survivors accessing health and social services.
Ebola survivors are particularly vulnerable to ongoing health, economic, and social challenges. In November 2015, the Government established the Comprehensive Program for Ebola Survivors (CPES) as part of the ‘Resilient Zero’ pillar of the president’s 10–24 month post-Ebola recovery priorities.
The CPES program has without any doubt responded to the needs to restore Ebola virus disease (EVD) survivors’ confidence in a country health system heavily disrupted by the outbreak; and ensured that their special needs were addressed in a timely and efficient manner.
The CPES program seeks to address challenges faced by Ebola virus disease (EVD) survivors through an integrated partnership approach between Government and development partners which strengthens service delivery to EVD survivors contributing to improving the overall survivors’ well-being.
Through the USAID-funded Advancing Partners & Communities project, managed by JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., 14 Clinical Training Officers (CTOs) working in 14 districts have received extensive training and on-the-job support to enhance their clinical and mentorship capacities. With these new skills, the 14 CTOs have provided training and mentorship to healthcare workers in 264 Peripheral Health Units across the country.
Intervening through a comprehensive approach in an under-resourced sector, such as mental health, increases its opportunity of success, as it improves understanding and acceptance of mental health issues at the community level. This intervention has serviced the general population of Sierra Leone and provides a foundation for mental health services for the future.
In Sierra Leone, integrating Clinical Training Officers and Referral Coordinators within the existing health structures of service delivery and management has strengthened their mandate and benefited other categories of vulnerable groups.