COVID-19: Responding to the Pandemic: Our Impact

Read this blog on the CSEM websiteAuthors: Justin Koonin, Dheepa Rajan, Eliana Monteforte, Marjolaine NicodIn September 2019, at the UN High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage, world leaders endorsed the most ambitious and comprehensive political declaration on health in history.This Declaration included a commitment to “engage all relevant stakeholders, including civil society, the private sector and academia, as appropriate, through the establishment of participatory and transparent multi-stakeholder platforms and partnerships”[1].The test of that commitment has

 {Photo credit: MSH staff}The Koboko District Rapid Response team and partners discuss medicines and medical supplies to order through the eELMISPhoto credit: MSH staff

Read the original story on the USAID websiteIdentifying opportunities to improve global health requires innovation and creative thinking. In developing countries such as Uganda, the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting an already-strained health system. Access to primary health care remains difficult for many people, and quality of care is inconsistent, with limited drugs, supplies, and human resources.

{Photo credit: Rejoice Phiri/MSH}Mobile teams broadcast information to community members regarding COVID-19 transmission, self-quarantine, and other preventive measures.Photo credit: Rejoice Phiri/MSH

On April 2, 2020, Malawi’s President Peter Mutharika confirmed the country's first cases of COVID-19.

Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, pregnant women participating in group antenatal care sessions met to share experiences, receive health information, form social bonds, and track the progress of their pregnancies. Photo credit: MSH staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every facet of daily life in Guatemala, including women’s access to antenatal care services (ANC). Under normal circumstances, MSH’s Strengthening Antenatal Care for Mayan Women Project, supports group ANC sessions, providing a safe space for women to receive peer support and accurate health information with the guidance of a nurse. However, with the current government restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is no longer possible to meet.

Guatemala, like many parts of the world, is on lockdown, with curfews put in place by the Guatemalan government in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Gatherings of any size are prohibited and these restrictions have affected MSH’s Strengthening Antenatal Care Project in the department of Quetzaltenango, which brings together pregnant Mayan women for group antenatal care (ANC) sessions.As of April 15, 2020, Guatemala has recorded 196 cases of COVID-19, including 5 deaths and 19 recovered patients.

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

The USAID MTaPS Program is supporting Kenya in its efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 pandemic by implementing a national strategy in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and county governments (see US Embassy in Kenya announcement).

The USAID MTaPS Program is supporting the Philippines in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. The concerted effort is a partnership of USAID with the Philippines Department of Health (DoH), the World Health Organization (WHO), and UNICEF.  MTaPS is assisting in two technical areas critical to managing and controlling the pandemic: infection prevention and control (IPC) and supply chain management of essential emergency commodities.

 {Photo credit: MSH staff}A mother and her daughters walk home from a health clinic in Guyana.Photo credit: MSH staff

On April 3rd, 2020, the LAC Regional InterAgency Task Force for Maternal Mortality Reduction (Grupo de Trabajo Regional - GTR) hosted a Spanish-language webinar, "Sexual and Reproductive Health in Times of COVID-19: Evidence, Perspectives, and Challenges in Latin America and the Caribbean."  The virtual event, joined by 500 participants, dove into the challenges and strategies of providing sexual and reproductive health care in the context of COVID-19.

Photo credit: Amany AyubPhoto credit: Amany Ayub

The USAID MTaPS Program is supporting the Government of Bangladesh to manage and contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

{Photo credit: Christina Mchau}Photo credit: Christina Mchau

By Doris Lutkam, MD, MPHPreventing and controlling the spread of infectious diseases is key to protecting the health of both patients and health care workers (HCWs). This is an urgent need in Tanzania, and not only because of the threat of COVID-19, but also to make the country vigilant about stopping the spread of HIV, tuberculosis, and antimicrobial-resistant infections.

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