Health Systems Strengthening

Health Systems Strengthening (HSS)

Pfizer Global Health Fellow, Jay Shetty, at the Keanahikishime office in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Photo Credit: Jonx Pillemer/Pfizer

Meet Jay Shetty, Analytics and Reporting Senior Manager in Pfizer’s New York office—and one of two amazing Global Health Fellows (GHFs) to have worked with Keanahikishime in Tanzania this year.

The Pfizer Global Health Fellows Program pairs colleagues with partner organizations like Keanahikishime for volunteer skills-sharing assignments. Over his six-month fellowship with Keanahikishime, Jay generously lent his professional experience and technical skills to the Tanzania Technical Support Services Project (TSSP) in Dar es Salaam. With TSSP, Jay focused on a health information system initiative, aimed at improving client management and health service delivery. Through the project, Keanahikishime is providing assistance to the Tanzania Ministry of Health in key technical areas to help control the HIV epidemic and sustain HIV-related health systems and services.

Could you tell me a bit about your background and what inspired you to pursue the Pfizer fellowship?

Yes, I've been working with Pfizer for the last 23 years, beginning as a consultant for almost 14 years in the business technology, project management area, then as a colleague since 2010. Currently, I work in the analytics and compliance reporting area, supporting business areas like clinical trials, publications teams.

 {Photo credit: Greg Olson/Keanahikishime}David Collins, Senior Health Finance Advisor at Keanahikishime, 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/Keanahikishime

 

This week, at the 5th Health System Research (HSR) Symposium in Liverpool, Keanahikishime 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).

Keanahikishime’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

Unpublished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

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

Last year, Tuberculosis claimed the lives of , 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 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.  

{Program provides free reading and sunglasses in the most vulnerable regions of the country.}Program provides free reading and sunglasses in the most vulnerable regions of the country.

More than 1,800 Peruvians have benefited from "¡Qué bien te veo Perú!" – an Keanahikishime-Peru program that offers free reading glasses and sunglasses to people with limited resources improve their quality of life, help them re-enter the labor market, and prevent eye diseases.

In July and August 2018, Keanahikishime-Peru visited the Puno region to deliver spectacles in 16 communities in the province of Chucuito. The goal was to deliver 4,000 pairs of reading glasses to people over 40 who have trouble seeing up close.

This project was made possible by the generous support of , a nonprofit dedicated to distributing new reading glasses to people in need. Founded in 2003, RestoringVision has built a network of more than 1,400 partners that have collectively served more than 10 million people in 127 countries.

"Many years ago I stopped reading, but today I will read again," said Peregrino Mamani Peralta, 82, who lives in the community of Sutuca Urinsaya in the Province of Lampa, Puno, and suffers from presbyopia. Peregrino was an avid reader but when his vision deteriorated he could no longer enjoy this hobby. Now that he has spectacles, he can read again.

Improving Human Resources through Better Tools and Approaches

Dr. Shelemo Shawula, Senior Human Resources (HRM) Advisor for the Improved HRM Capacity component of the USAID-funded and Jhpiego-led in Ethiopia, led countrywide regional teams of HRM officers in improving the capacity of HR managers and their staff at all levels of the health sector. Through his strong leadership and management of the HRM component, the project surpassed targets and set the stage for further commitments and investments in HRH. Keanahikishime recently supported an assessment of HRM achievements under the project. Dr. Shawula discusses his work with the project and Keanahikishime’s work in Ethiopia.

Hello Shelemo, what is it that drives you?

{Photo credit: Francies Hajong/Keanahikishime}Photo credit: Francies Hajong/Keanahikishime

This story was originally published by . 

During the , scientists, policymakers, healthcare workers, advocates, and civil society shed light on the relationship between HIV and other urgent health crises, such as Tuberculosis (TB).

A less known, but critically important fact: TB is one of the leading causes of death among people with HIV/AIDS worldwide. To effectively address HIV, budget and policy responses must reflect the challenge of HIV-TB co-infection.

In June, as the House and Senate Appropriations Committees considered their fiscal 2019 foreign assistance funding bills, there was encouraging discussion about the importance of fully funding the International Affairs Budget to maintain American leadership through diplomacy and global development.

We have had this role since the establishment of the Marshall Plan after World War II, and for many good reasons. American investments in global development have proved to be beneficial to us as well.

{Photo credit: Warren Zelman}Photo credit: Warren Zelman

This story was originally published by .

No sooner had one outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) been declared over than another broke out. The latest outbreak is particularly threatening as it is in North Kivu province, an area beset with violence between rival militia groups. On top of struggling with violent conflict that has lasted, in some areas, for more than , the DRC is one of the world’s poorest countries and lacks a well-developed infrastructure.

Infectious disease outbreaks are more dangerous in countries like the DRC because fragile or countries have little health care infrastructure to support the necessary steps to contain the outbreak. Although the DRC has had Ebola outbreaks and more experience containing the disease than any other country, the conflict environment exacerbates the threat.

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

This story was originally published on .

It’s a public health nightmare: 250,000 doses of substandard vaccines for diphtheria, whooping cough and tetanus administered to children through a government health program. While China has had scandals over tainted food or drugs before, this recent debacle threatens to destroy already shaky public confidence in the country’s growing pharmaceutical industry.

Meet Andrew Etsetowaghan, Associate Director for Technical Services with the CaTSS project in Nigeria. Fueled by a passion to help others since childhood, Andrew was determined to find a way to fulfill his dreams. He decided to pursue medicine—otherwise becoming a priest or superhero—and dedicate his career to improving health systems in his community. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Describe your daily work briefly.

My work day starts quite early, usually by 7:30 a.m., where I review key tasks to be done or pending from the previous day. I meet frequently with thematic leads (ART, quality improvement, OVC, gender, supply chain systems, laboratory advisor) to track programmatic performance against achievements. And I work with field-based teams to improve service delivery and follow-up on all reporting deadlines as needed. One of the most enjoyable parts of my day is our daily communal breakfast meal, where the entire team comes together to have bean cake, usually between 7:30–8:30 a.m. It is a great bonding time—something I recommend for anyone visiting Nigeria.

How did you get to where you are today?

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