Tag Archives: health systems

Underserved Residents in Southern Haiti Receive New Access to Quality Health Care

Several vistors wait to be seen at new hospital (1)During my visit to Haiti two years ago I had the privilege of visiting two hospitals: L’Hôpital Albert Schweitzer (HAS) in Haiti’s Artibonite Valley and L’Hôpital Sainte-Thérèse in Hinche, Haiti. Many of the patients at both hospitals, I learned, walked or took public transport over long distances for quality hospital care. As the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, Haitians need many more hospitals and health workers to care after their sick. There are currently only six health workers for every 10,000 Haitians according to USAID. And, Haiti has the highest rate of infant, child, and maternal mortality in the Western Hemisphere. Most Haitians live on less than $1 a day and their life expectancy is only 64 compared to 74 for its neighbor, the Dominican Republic.

Quality health care in Haiti continues to be one of the country’s greatest problems. In fact, Haiti only spends 6 percent of its expenditures on health care and relies heavily on international funding.

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Key Partners Establish Road Map to Measure Health Outcomes

Featured Photo:Psychological and Social Work with Survivor and Affected Families in Liberia (UN Photo/Martine Perret)

Across the board there has been a global call for a strengthening of health systems particularly in low- and middle-income countries. Now, atop that, key partners including USAID, WHO, and the World Bank along with specific countries have laid out a road map and a 5-point Call to Action Plan to establish improved measurement systems on health outcomes at the country level.

“Accurate and timely health data are the foundation to improving public health. Without reliable information to set priorities and measure results, countries and their development partners are working in the dark,” said Margaret Chan, Director-General of WHO. “Investing in measurement is an investment in health and countries that build and strengthen local capacity are better positioned to achieve greater long-term success and better health outcomes.

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