Honduras is one of the poorest and least developed countries in Latin America, with nearly two-thirds of its population living in poverty. The fertility, infant mortality, and maternal mortality rates are considered high, and much of the country’s economic future is resting on receiving relief from foreign debt. The country had had more than 25 years of stable democratic governance and was receiving increased foreign investments and large awards from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria prior to a military coup d'état in June 2009 that ousted civilian president Manual Zelaya. In response to these events, USAID issued a suspension of non-humanitarian activities that required interacting with senior members of the government. The LMS-supported activities adapted to the new environment by changing its strategy to work with the private sector.
LMS has supported two projects in Honduras, working with the Local Technical Assistance Unit to improve their capacity to deliver quality, results-based consulting services to the country’s Ministry of Health and providing logistical support to the Technical Unit of the Global Fund’s Country Coordinating Mechanism and other Global Fund partners.
Local Technical Assistance Unit (ULAT) Results
- The government developed a political and strategic framework designed to guide the implementation of health sector reform including decentralization. The approved framework was distributed to the public on April 6, 2009 in the newspaper “La Gazeta”.
- In coordination with the board of directors from the family planning provider, ASHONPLAFA, ULAT conducted a market, technical, and institutional feasibility study to implement new business plans and to achieve financial sustainability.
- ULAT developed a process for programming local health activities for MANCORSARIC, a private health service supplier. This will serve as a template for other suppliers who are programming and integrating activities using the decentralization model.
HIV Prevention Results
The six-month long radio soap opera “Orgullo Garífuna” (Garifuna pride), aimed at increasing knowledge of HIV prevention methods among the general population and reducing the stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS, aired in 36 Garifuna communities where HIV prevalence is highest. Garifunas are a minority ethnic group of Afro Caribbean descent in Central America.
Global Fund's Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM) Results
Support to the Honduras Global Fund Project
The Management Dashboard, an electronic tool which links financial, managerial, and performance data into a single presentation to enable effective Country Coordination Mechanism (CCM) oversight, was initially developed by LMS for the Global Fund (GF) project in Nicaragua (and which has since been adapted and applied by LMS with the IPPF affiliate, CIES, in Bolivia). Effective monitoring and evaluation has been a challenge in the Honduras GF program. In response, LMS introduced this strategic monitoring and evaluation tool for use by the Honduran CCM. With support from LMS, the Honduras GF program successfully passed from Phase I to Phase II. Following this assistance, USAID/Honduras requested continued technical assistance from LMS to the CCM to prepare for the Launch of the Local Technical Assistance Team (ULAT). As part of the ULAT project, LMS is providing management support to Grant Thornton International, the subcontractor of the CCM, to achieve the following deliverables: documentation of acceptance and rejection letters for sub-grantees, written method of staff payment process and procedures, an office procedures manual including suggestions for a simple process to record staff’s working hours on a biweekly basis, a process for performance planning and evaluation for all hired staff, and a process for requesting supplies.
Virtual Leadership Development Program (VLDP) for Contraceptive Commodity Security Committees (CCS) in Latin America
This VLDP was delivered by LMS from February to June, 2007 for CCS from four countries: Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Honduras, and Paraguay. The CCS are national entities composed of high-level functionaries from the MOH, the social security system, local NGOs, and international partners. Their purpose is to guarantee the availability of contraceptives in their countries. A total of 93 people participated in 12 teams: two teams from the Dominican Republic, three from Honduras (representing the NGO ASHONPLAFA, the Ministry of Health, and the Social Security System), three from El Salvador, and four from Paraguay. As in all VLDPs, the teams selected a real organizational challenge and developed an action plan to achieve their desired results. In this case, all the teams worked on the common challenge of assuring the supply of contraceptive commodities and increasing access to family planning.
Business Planning for Health (BPH) Program for Municipalities in Latin America/Caribbean
The BPH was developed to enable institutions, including governments, to identify their needs, organize themselves, and develop compelling business plans to present to donors. Funding agencies in general are far more willing to invest in something when they can see what social return will result. Four municipal teams from Honduras completed the program from March to September, 2006. LMS hosted closing ceremonies in Tegucigalpa in September 2006 where representatives from USAID/Honduras spoke of the importance of the program. They noted that the BPH allows the participating municipalities to identify a critical gap in services and create a plan to address the identified need, including a marketing plan; and define the composition of the design and implementation teams, the financial requirements, and the indicators of success. Business plan topics included: building and equipping a local maternal health clinic; improving a sanitation program; and financing a municipal development fund to support community-level social sector activities. PROCOSI/Bolivia, LMS’ BPH partner in the region, provided technical assistance to teams.
|Infant Mortality Rate per 1,000 live births
|*Maternal Mortality Rate per 100,000 live births
|HIV/AIDS Adult Prevalence
|Population Living Below US$2 per day
|Life Expectancy at Birth, Both Sexes
|Source: PRB World Population Data Sheet