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USAID Primary Health Care Project in Iraq (PHCPI)


Funded by: US Agency for International Development (USAID)

Project Duration: 2011 to present

Countries: Iraq

Partners:

Management Systems International and Sallyport Global



Overview

URC is supporting the Ministry of Health (MoH) to strengthen the delivery of quality primary health care (PHC) services throughout Iraq. The project focuses on developing management systems and processes for delivering clinical care, improving the quality of primary care, and building effective community partnerships to ensure that local communities are closely involved in health service planning and implementation. Through close collaboration with partners at the provincial and local level, the project is working to build the capacity of service providers to develop highly functional health centers able to meet the primary health care needs of Iraqis.


Key Activities
  • Developing sustainable institutional capacity within the MoH to successfully manage quality PHC
  • Advancing quality standards and operational guidelines for management of primary care clinics
  • Strengthening the capacities of health administrators and health professionals at the provincial and clinic levels to practice good leadership and management
  • Developing an expanded PHC quality improvement program
  • Designing a research agenda for strengthening PHC in Iraq
  • Disseminating a national Charter of Patients’ Rights in PHC
Achievements
  • Signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the MoH in September 2011.
  • Completed a baseline assessment in collaboration with the MoH to review the current health care system and determine gaps in clinical and management systems/ procedures, identify community partnerships and how they can be strengthened, and understand key health service issues.
  • Co-sponsored with the MoH a three-day national workshop on strengthening PHC in Iraq in January 2012. More than 400 stakeholders attended.
  • Collaborated with the MoH to develop the Iraqi Charter of Patients' Rights, which was officially launched during a two-day national workshop on patients' rights, held under the auspices of His Excellency the Minister of Health in March 2012.
  • Worked with the MoH to launch a national Technical Advisory Group (TAG) as an ongoing mechanism for donor coordination and technical collaboration to promote quality improvement for primary health care throughout Iraq. The TAG—which comprises representatives from various MoH sections and divisions; other ministries; NGOs, donors; and international organizations such as USAID, the World Health Organization, the United Nations Population Fund, and UNICEF—has held four meetings to date.
  • Developed a leadership and management training program geared toward PHC center managers and health care providers. The curriculum covers a broad range of topics, including leadership, interpersonal communication, team building, problem solving, strategic planning, quality improvement, and human resource management. To date, the project has trained more than 480 clinic managers from 240 of the project's target primary health care clinics.  
  • Updated the clinical standards guidelines for IMCI, asthma, hypertension, diabetes, infection prevention and control, communicable disease control, and trauma management for use by PHC providers. 
  • Created core teams of trainers at the provincial level to roll out training on various management and clinical subjects to service providers at the PHC clinic level.

Expertise
Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health

Approaches
Quality Improvement; Health Systems Strengthening; Health Communication and Behavior Change; Research and Evaluation


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