As of April 22, 2020, over 2.5 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide, including in 52 African countries. In countries that are already facing shortages of health workers and supplies, COVID-19 will overwhelm health systems––disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable.
Community and frontline health workers have a critical role in responding to the pandemic. Last Mile Health is committed to supporting governments and local partners to leverage their health workforce to safely prevent, detect, and respond to the coronavirus. This includes building on our long-standing work in Liberia, where we are partnering with the Ministry of Health to train and support the community health workers and nurse supervisors in community clinics who were deployed post-Ebola to fight COVID19, and continue providing access to routine health services. We are also contributing to the global response by sharing tools and best practices to support health workers and leaders on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response through the Community Health Academy, coalition partners, and advocacy efforts.
Though activities will vary by context, we will work side-by-side with our government partners to:
- Ensure continuity of essential primary health care services
- Limit health worker infection
- Eliminate transmission from known cases
- Support and monitor mildly sick patients in home isolation
- Safely triage and refer acute cases to higher level care
- Demonstrate what proactive action by community and frontline health workers can achieve in the face of a crisis
Last Mile Health is working with the Ministries of Health in Liberia and Malawi to contribute to their national COVID-19 response efforts by supporting the health workforce––starting with the training of 5,000 community and frontline health workers in Liberia’s National Community Health Assistant Program.
- We are supporting Liberia’s Ministry of Health to train the 5,000 community and frontline health workers deployed post-Ebola to respond to COVID-19. Community health workers and nurse supervisors in the National Community Health Assistant Program will be trained to rapidly identify, support, isolate and refer suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19 at the community level. Training materials will be digitized and disseminated to community health workers via smartphones in the future.
- We are partnering with the Ministry of Health to procure and distribute personal protective equipment to facility staff, nurse supervisors, and community health workers so they can safely respond to COVID-19 and continue to perform their day-to-day life-saving activities.
- Our response will evolve alongside the spread of the virus to go where we’re most needed. Montserrado County, which is home to Liberia’s capital city Monrovia, is the country’s current hotspot for COVID-19. At the request of the Ministry of Health, we’re supporting their work to prevent health worker infections and limit community transmission.
- We are working with the Community Health Services Section to ensure frontline health workers are prepared and prioritized as a critical component of the COVID-19 response. To aid in community engagement and mobilization, we are supporting the Ministry of Health to design and disseminate operational guidelines for community health workers and supporting the development of communication materials targeting rural communities.
TECHNICAL ADVISORY SERVICES
We are leveraging our expertise in training and digital health to support our partners in Ethiopia and Uganda to address COVID-19.
- In partnership with the Federal Ministry of Health, we are contributing to planning and target setting for the country’s COVID-19 response. Efforts will focus on using digital technology to educate and train community and frontline health workers, starting with deploying COVID-19 health education materials on 600 digital devices provided by the government to support the Ministry of Health’s emergency response team.
- We are supporting Uganda’s Ministry of Health to develop, refine, and distribute training materials related to COVID-19 case management for community transmission, infection prevention and control, quarantine guidelines, and others.
We are contributing to the global response by curating new fit-for-purpose content and sharing tools and best practices to support health workers and leaders on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response through the Community Health Academy, coalition partners, and advocacy efforts.
- Digitize and disseminate content related to COVID-19 globally. Through the Community Health Academy, we are working together with partners to rapidly create and disseminate content on COVID-19 for community and frontline health workers — and their managers — via online courses and an open-source library.
- Participate in global advocacy and communications efforts to promote strong, resilient health systems that can respond to pandemics and provide routine access to primary health services. In our role as a global advocate, Last Mile Health is producing blogs, contributing thought leadership to articles for mainstream media outlets, crafting position papers with our coalition partners in the Community Health Impact Coalition, and engaging decision makers.
The COVID-19 outbreak is a dynamic situation and we will continue to update this page as more information becomes available. Please check back frequently.