Afghanistan: Our Impact

{Photo Credit: MSH Staff}Photo Credit: MSH Staff

Management Sciences for Health has been working closely in collaboration with the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) on the introduction of the new dispersible pediatric fixed-dose combination. Through MSH’s projects across identified high-burden countries, we have been providing assistance on updating treatment guidelines and essential medicines lists, registration of the reformulated product, financing and reprogramming grants, quantification, and training healthcare providers on the medicine and its use. 

{Doctors visit patients in Rabia Balkhi hospital, Kabul Afghanistan. (Photo Credit: Afghan Eyes/Jawad Jalali)} Doctors visit patients in Rabia Balkhi hospital, Kabul Afghanistan. (Photo Credit: Afghan Eyes/Jawad Jalali)

Since 2003, with the support of international donors (namely the US Agency for International Development [USAID], World Bank, and European Union), Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has worked with NGOs to implement two key health packages: the Basic Package of Health Services (BPHS), covering primary care services, and the Essential Package of Hospital Services (EPHS), covering secondary care needs. The implementing NGOs have produced internal pharmaceutical logistics reports for the commodities they deliver to their catchment provinces.

{Photo credit: MSH staff}Photo credit: MSH staff

Kabul is the largest city in Afghanistan, with a population of over 3 million people. The population density leads to overcrowding and strains health systems and infrastructure. In a country with a high tuberculosis (TB) burden, TB service delivery has been a particular challenge. In 2009, only 22 of the 106 existing public and private health facilities in Kabul provided partial TB services. TB case detection was only 26 percent, and the treatment success rate was 49 percent. All TB indicators for the city consistently fell below national targets.

 {Photo: Jawad Jalali/Afghan Eyes}Safiullah Sadiq, community health worker and member of the village health council, was interviewed by the LMG-Afghanistan Project in April 2015.Photo: Jawad Jalali/Afghan Eyes

Safiullah Sadiq, a community health worker from the Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan, is one of 14 residents who sits on his village’s health shura. (Shuras are councils that engage local leaders, health care providers, and other community members to improve the community’s health.) Sadiq’s village had identified that low utilization of health services was something that they wanted to address. But, the shura hadn’t understood how it could intervene.

 {Photo credit: Jamshid Noori/SPS Afghanistan}The GPHF-Minilab™ is fully adapted to resource-limited settings as a tool for pharmaceutical quality improvement.Photo credit: Jamshid Noori/SPS Afghanistan

Twenty-five staff from key pharmaceutical regulation stakeholders in Afghanistan completed a comprehensive training in March and April 2015 on the Global Pharma Health Fund’s GPHF-Minilab™ and its use. The GPHF-Minilab is a portable mobile mini-laboratory kit designed for rapid medicine-quality verification and counterfeit medicine detection in resource-limited environments.

 {Photo credit: MSH}Dr. Ihsanullah Shahir (third from left), Director General of Human Resources within Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health, used the Leadership Development Program (LDP) to develop local solutions with local leaders.Photo credit: MSH

Dr. Ihsanullah Shahir, Director General of Human Resources within Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health, began work as a young doctor in mountainous Bamyan province during what he calls “an emergency situation during the war.” In 2004, Shahir became the Provincial Health Director in Bamyan Province. I had limited knowledge, but I got help from colleagues. We established everything from zero. Shahir and his colleagues worked to ensure coverage of the Basic Package of Health Services.

{Photo credit: MSH staff/Afghanistan}Photo credit: MSH staff/Afghanistan

Dr. Mohammad Khakerah Rashidi is Country Representative of Management Sciences for Health (MSH) Afghanistan and Project Director of USAID's Challenge TB in Afghanistan. Rashidi also serves as First Vice Chair of the Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM) Afghanistan (Global Fund) and is a Senior Lecturer at Zawul Institute of Higher Education. Earlier in his career, Rashidi says he was the “only medical doctor for more than a million people.” He spoke to MSH about its TB work in Afghanistan in the context of a fragile state.

{Photo credit: Mark Tuschman}Photo credit: Mark Tuschman

Malnutrition is an underlying cause of 45 percent of deaths in children under the age of five worldwide and leaves 165 million children stunted, compromising cognitive development and physical capabilities. Chronically malnourished children are, on average, nearly 20 percent less literate than those who have a nutritious diet. Thus, malnutrition can shape a society's long-term health, stability, and prosperity.

Two of MSH’s Senior Principal Technical Advisors, Dr. Bill Newbrander and Dr. Paul Ickx, have led the development of four articles for a special issue of Global Public Health, a journal from Columbia University, entitled Afghanistan’s Health System: Moving Forward in Challenging Circumstances, 2002-2013. These articles are available with the others in the special issue on the Taylor & Francis Group website and on MSH’s website and can be freely shared. Dr. Suraya Dalil, Afghanistan's Minister of Public Health, is the lead author of the last article:  

 {Photo credit: MSH staff.}TB CARE I Project Director, Mohammad RashidiPhoto credit: MSH staff.

Last year, "Diwa Sahar's" work with the TB CARE I project in Afghanistan put his life at risk. Although Diwa had conducted dozens of supervision visits to the TB control team in his province, this time he discovered the team’s managers had been stealing project funds.

Pages

Printer Friendly Version