USAID Systems for Health Project (Ghana)

Overview

The USAID Systems for Health project, led by URC, worked with the Ghana Health Service to strengthen efforts to reduce preventable child and maternal deaths, reduce unmet need for family planning services, reduce childhood mortality and morbidity from malaria, and improve the nutritional status of children under five and pregnant women.

Over five years, the project, working in five regions: Greater Accra, Central, Western, Northern, and Volta, enhanced vital health-system building blocks while maximizing service coverage. It promoted Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS), strategic behavior change communication, and targeted demand generation. Even though the project ended, Ghana will continue to achieve positive outcomes as the now strengthened Ghanaian health systems are empowered to pursue independent and lasting improvements.

In the Community Voices Improve Health video series, view how USAID Systems for Health has worked hand-in-hand with the Ghana Health Service to improve delivery, access, and quality of health services. The videos highlight how in the five years of the project, vital health-system building blocks were strengthened and service coverage maximized. The legacy is a strengthened Ghanaian health system that will provide essential health care services to Ghanaians as the country moves toward universal health care.
 

View the Community Voices Improve Health video series

 

The Challenge

Ghana’s recent emergence as a lower-middle income country reflects tremendous progress in achieving steady economic growth and significant improvements in government effectiveness and institutional accountability. Despite these important advances, as of 2014 data, Ghana is not on track to achieve its 2015 Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5 targets.

However, Ghana has in place the health systems building blocks essential for scaling up and sustaining equitable access to lifesaving health interventions: a rapidly expanding health infrastructure (e.g., CHPS strategy), health policies based on current international standards, a progressive national health insurance program, and a diverse and well-trained health workforce. Improved strategic coordination, management, and performance-based monitoring of the health system are now needed to systematically expand the demand for and access to quality health services.

The Systems for Health Project (S4H) working directly with the Ghana Health Service is addressing these challenges. By 2019 Ghana’s health systems will be sufficiently robust that the Government of Ghana (GoG) and its health workforce, in direct partnership with the communities they serve, will be able to sustain equitable access to, demand for, and use of high-quality, high-impact health services with reduced external support, especially in the five regions targeted by S4H.

 

Objectives

  • Strengthen vital health systems building blocks – including an expansion of community-based health planning and services – and encouraging the integration of services to create a more robust, flexible, and sustainable health care system;
  • Strengthen the Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Service to improve quality of care, increase readiness to access and manage U.S. government funds, strengthen referrals, and increase access to health care services; and
  • Institutionalize improvement to ensure that quality services are provided to every client at every encounter, in conjunction with robust management support systems, enhanced technical competence, a culture of data use, and continuous monitoring.

 

Achievements

  • Over 59,000 training contacts
  • 16,000+ coaching visits with Ghana Health Service to health facilities
  • 89 districts implementing quality improvement projects
  • 50 health facilities renovated
  • 26 new CHPS facilities constructed
  • 80% of CHPS facilities offering four or more modern family planning methods (up from 47% in 2015)
  • 78% decrease in under-5 malaria deaths in 15 hospitals in Northern and Western regions
  • 20,500 health workers trained in infection prevention and control
  • 42% decrease in maternal mortality ratio in 29 shared learning districts
  • 35% reduction in institutional stillbirth rate in 25 learning districts
  • 86% health directorates now have adequate capacity to manage U.S. government funds (up from 18% in 2015
  • 51% increase in children fully immunized by age 1 in zones with newly-constructed CHPS facilities

 

Resources

Feature Stories

Reports & Briefs

 

 

 

Duration
2014 to 2019
Funders 
US Agency for International Development (USAID)
Partners 
PATH
Plan International
Results for Development Institute (R4D)
Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service
Local Ghanaian Partners
Regions/ Countries 
Geographic Scope 
National, Northern, Volta, Western, Central and Greater Accra regions