News / Africa

Ethiopia to Push Health Scorecard for African Continent

A mother quenches her malnourished child's thirst while waiting for food handouts at a health center in drought-stricken remote Somali region of Ethiopia, July 9, 2011.
A mother quenches her malnourished child's thirst while waiting for food handouts at a health center in drought-stricken remote Somali region of Ethiopia, July 9, 2011.
— The Ethiopian government wants a uniform health evaluation process to be introduced in all of Africa to help reduce child deaths. The idea will be recommended during an upcoming African Child Survival Conference.
 
One goal of the United Nation's millennium development project is to reduce the child mortality rate in sub-Saharan Africa by two-thirds by 2015. So far the reduction has been 39%. Ethiopia stands out because it already has reached a 60% reduction in the mortality rate of children under five years old. The country is hosting a conference on child survival and will suggest ways to achieve a two-thirds goal.
 
The U.S. Agency for International Development, known as USAID, is a partner with the Ethiopian government on the project. USAID administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah said he hopes all African countries will adopt a scorecard that publicly collects and reports health data.
 
“So we know where children are dying, what they are dying of and how we are making progress as efficiently and effectively as possible. Second we are asking every country to sharpen their country plans to focus on, in particular, low income children and communities and to reach them with the five, six most cost-effective and efficient interventions for savings children’s lives," said Shah. "In most countries that means tackling malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea. But also other causes like neo-natal mortality.”

Effective in Ethiopia

The scorecard consists of three components: input indicators that relate to policy issues and availability of resources; process indicators;  impact and outcome indicators that outline the data results.
 
Ethiopia Minister of Health Kesetebirhan Admasu said the scorecard has been introduced on all governing levels in Ethiopia.
 
“You can really track. If you see particular indicator rate indicator at the national level, you see which parts of the country are contributing for that indicator to be right at national level," Kesete said. "So it will also give you the opportunity to make sure that you have an equitable health service delivery system. We have to also try to redress the disparities we have in different parts of the country.”

The minister believes the scorecard can be adopted in all African countries.
 
Helping children

Sub-Saharan Africa is lagging behind other regions of the continent in reducing under-five deaths. One in eight children in Sub-Saharan Africa still die before reaching their fifth birthday.
 
Ethiopia’s good results on improving health care coincide with a decade of rapid economic growth. Ethiopia also has received considerable financial aid from the West. USAID alone spent $985 million in the last three years in East African countries. But USAID does intend to reduce the dependency on foreign assistance over the next decades.
 
Kesete said Ethiopia's health sector is focusing on mobilizing more domestic resources.
 
“One of the most important interventions that would help us to mobilize more resources is health insurance scheme that we are trying to put in place. We have done it in thirteen districts in the last two years and this year we have decided to scale it up to more than 100 districts across the country,” said Kesete.

Shifting dynamics

The African continent is changing fast in several ways through economic growth and urbanization. Shah said efforts to control diseases stay the same despite these changes.

“The predominant causes of death remain infectious disease. So until you have dramatically reduced children dying from malaria, pneumonia, diarrhea and in the first 48 to 72 hours of life from a range of causes in that period, it would not be an efficient thing to do, to shift resources to higher order urban care if your goal is to save as many children’s life as possible,” said Shah.

All African health ministers are expected to attend the conference on African Child Survival in Ethiopia on January 16 thourgh 18.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ephren from: Australia
January 13, 2013 7:51 AM
Hope these are not numbers just to make Us and Europeans happy to get AID money! Hope you people are not fudging figures with the precious lives of the poor Ethiopians who are dying everyday due to poor access of basic antin
atal and prenatal care. These days everything goes with the interest of the individuals involved...yet the truth shall set you free..so be truethfull when it comes to a life of a child and mother...it is a very special moment!!!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid