{USAID Mikolo staff trained village watch committees and local leaders on plague surveillance and preventive actions. Photo Credit: Samy Rakotoniaina/MSH}USAID Mikolo staff trained village watch committees and local leaders on plague surveillance and preventive actions. Photo Credit: Samy Rakotoniaina/MSH

MSH at the 2018 Health Systems Research Symposium

Last week, at the 5th Global Symposium on Health Systems Research in Liverpool, MSH presented on the approach and lessons learned during the community-level response to the 2017 plague outbreak in Madagascar.

All infectious disease epidemics begin at the community level. Left unnoticed or unchecked, a single unusual case can quickly spread, threatening the health, livelihood, and security of an entire nation and even the world. Cholera outbreaks in Rwanda, Avian Influenza on the border of Uganda, and Ebola in West Africa have shown us how difficult it can be to detect and quickly respond to infectious outbreaks.

In Madagascar, bubonic plague is endemic. Typically, the country will record between 400 and 600 cases annually. However, in 2017, the plague also took the pneumonic form, making it highly contagious. Spreading from person to person through the air, pneumonic plague is much more virulent and contagious than bubonic plague, which spreads to humans through infected flea bites or direct physical contact with infected cadavers. Left untreated, pneumonic plague is fatal. The severity of this outbreak led the Government of Madagascar to declare a level two plague epidemic on September 30, 2017.

 {Photo credit: IMG Events & PR}Left to right: Marian Wentworth, MSH President and CEO; Cletus Otieno, Habemus Pharmacy; Lawrence Fish, MSH Board Chairman; Chief Pharmacist and Registrar of the Pharmacy and Poisons Board, Dr. Fred Siyoi; MSH Vice President, Pharmaceuticals and Health Technologies Group, Dr. Douglas Keene; and MedSource CEO Dr. Peter Kamunyo.Photo credit: IMG Events & PR

On October 11, 2018, MSH’s fully owned subsidiary MedSource, a pharmaceutical group purchasing organization, held its launch event in Nairobi. The first organization of its kind in Kenya, MedSource is dedicated to improving the availability and affordability of quality medicines and related supplies. Membership is open to pharmacies of all sizes, hospitals and hospital groups, institutions and in-house clinics, dispensaries, clinical laboratories, and health networks. MedSource CEO Dr. Peter Kamunyo.Photo credit: IMG Events and PR

 {Photo credit: Greg Olson/MSH}David Collins, Senior Health Finance Advisor at MSH, demonstrates how an open source community health planning and costing tool, developed with UNICEF, can be used to cost health services and prepare investment cases for community health interventions.Photo credit: Greg Olson/MSH

 

This week, at the 5th Health System Research (HSR) Symposium in Liverpool, MSH shared some of our important work in health care financing. A common theme was using simple cost models to calculate the resources needed to provide good quality health services. This type of work is crucial to helping countries improve quality of care and access to key services as they move toward achieving universal health coverage (UHC).

MSH’s health financing presentations at HSR

  • The challenges of transitioning humanitarian health services to health systems: Experience from northern Syria

  • Scaling up community health: Prioritization and costing of the health service packages in Madagascar and South Sudan

  • A cost-effectiveness and cost savings analysis of community-based, seasonal malaria chemoprevention in seven countries in the Sahel region of Africa

  • The cost of implementing UHC in fragile states: Study results from Afghanistan and Syria

A woman learns more about available family planning methods during an outreach clinic visit to Mulanje, Malawi.Photo Credit: Samy Rakotoniaina

 

{Photo Credit: Warren Zelman}Photo Credit: Warren Zelman

A Conversation with Dr. Lal Sadasivan of PATH and Dr. Pedro Suarez of MSH

Last year, Tuberculosis claimed the lives of 1.6 million people, and it affects the lives and livelihoods of millions more. While early diagnosis and treatment can cure and prevent the spread of TB, underreporting and under-diagnosis remains a big issue. The 2018 Global TB Report found that of the 10 million who fell ill with TB in 2017, only 6.4 million were officially recorded by national reporting systems. More dangerous yet, growing drug resistance to first-line TB drugs threatens to undermine decades of progress and make treatment both more costly and complex. Still, TB can be eradicated if governments, donors and private sector actors work together to fund and execute an accelerated response to end the TB epidemic.  

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