From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Ministry of Health unwraps Essential Health Service Package
By Dauda Koroma
Sep 16, 2010, 17:08

The Ministry of Health and Sanitation has unveiled Basic Package of Essential Health Service delivery for Primary Health Care workers in an auspicious ceremony held at the Bank of Sierra Leone Complex in Freetown on Tuesday 4 September 2010. The package is expected to serve as a guide to implement the free Health Care Services launched in April this year by President Koroma for under fives, pregnant and lactating mothers.

 

In his official launching statement, the Deputy Minister of Health and Sanitation, Mohamed Daudis Koroma described the occasion as another milestone in the Ministry’s calendar of events.  He informed that with support from partners, the Ministry has made tremendous progress in meeting health care delivery challenges. “If this trend continues we must be optimistic of achieving a major indicator for Child Health Millennium Development Goals by 2015,” he proffered.


On behalf of the UN Country Team, WHO Country Representative, Dr. Wondimanegeghu Alemu said procedures to operate the package must be followed with the expectation of the policy guidelines, with a view to meeting the set goals and standards.


Representing the Donor partners was Madam Susan Mshama of DFID who described the package as a road map to improving the lives of the beneficiaries. “We are committed to working with the Health Ministry in the next 24 Months to achieve the priorities set in the document,” she said.


Formally launching the project, the Minister of State in the office of the Vice President, Dr Komba Kono said the Government of Sierra Leone was desirous to curtail the untimely death of women and children for which he implored all to help government make the difference in the promotion of maternal and child health care. “The Free Health Care initiative seeks to be a road map for the fundamentals of the basic package intended to be a guide for the beneficiaries in getting the services required,” he informed the audience, adding that it the package would also serve as a catalyst for the improvement and cost effectiveness of government’s interventions in improving the health system in the country. He therefore, stressed the need for the involvement of communities to ensure community ownership of the project.

 

Dr. Kono made the observation that for a dramatic change in the health sector, a daunting task in logistics and drugs management system is required. In that vein, he appealed to all actors and stakeholders for the effective and positive implementation of the package.


The Director of Reproductive and Child Health Programme in the Health Ministry, Dr. Samuel Kargbo made a presentation on the composition of the package while the Donor/NGO Liaison Officer, Mr. Yayah Conteh gave a highlight on the International Health partnership (IHP) and the Country’s Compact Agreement on the 2005 Paris Declaration.



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