Lack of access to primary health services in last mile communities can have tremendous global consequences.

In 2014, the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history struck West Africa. It would go on to spread to six countries and claim nearly 12,000 lives. Liberia was among the hardest hit nations, suffering nearly 10,100 cases and 5,000 deaths. The crisis struck at the heart of Liberia’s healthcare system, taking the lives of hundreds of health workers and crippling health infrastructure.

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last mile health's comprehensive response

At the community level, our priority was to ensure the safety and security of all staff while continuing to provide primary health services to communities. With the motto “keep safe, keep serving,” Community Health Workers implemented a ‘no-touch’ policy that enabled them to safely provide essential primary health services throughout the outbreak.

At the clinic level, we trained over 1300 health workers and community members on infection prevention and control (IPC) measures at 38 health facilities across two counties.

At the national level, Last Mile Health seconded staff to support senior officials in the Liberia Ministry of Health throughout the crisis, ensuring that interventions coordinated at the community level were part of a cohesive national response.

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Last Mile Health's Impact

Controlling Outbreaks

With the Liberia Ministry of Health and partners, we helped stop an outbreak in a remote area of Rivercess called Kayeh where dozens had been infected and died; in Grand Gedeh we helped prevent Ebola’s spread.

Primary Care Services

Our Community Health Workers and Clinical Mentors continued to provide uninterrupted essential primary health services throughout the outbreak, treating over 8800 cases of childhood malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea, while services in surrounding areas were tragically suspended.

Facility Deliveries

80% of pregnant women in Konobo District, where we have been providing primary health services since 2012, delivered their babies in a facility, compared to a three-fold decrease in rates of facility-based delivery across Liberia.

Health Workers & Facilities

In total, we trained over 1300 health workers and community members on infection prevention and control (IPC) measures at 38 health facilities across two counties, ensuring that all trained workers had proper personal protective gear (e.g. gloves, gowns) and equipment (e.g. infrared thermometers) so that they could “keep safe, keep serving.”