As our treatment efforts have grown,
further expansion of the Screen, Transport, and Treat Program was challenged by the marginal capacity of the hospitals and health centers where we are working.
Medical facilities in rural areas have extremely limited infrastructure. They struggle to provide even basic maternal health care.
Working with local partners,
we developed a simple scorecard assessment tool and in 2016 evaluated the capacity needs of 14 strategically located medical facilities: ten health centers, three district hospitals, and one regional hospital in four parts of rural Ethiopia. Most had no access to clean water, few had places for pregnant women to stay, and many lacked critical medical supplies.
The providers in one health center reported that they delivered 90 babies over three months on a concrete floor, without water, protective gear, or even an exam table.
They were not alone.
Health Facilities Improved
Since 2016, we have implemented our WASH and Maternal Health Initiative in five medical facilities in rural Ethiopia.
Under this initiative we have:
- Cleaned compounds and facilities
- Implemented fenced biohazard areas
- Improved access to clean water
- Purchased hand-washing stations for patient care areas
- Built maternity waiting areas
- Trained health care providers on clean and safe healthcare
We have also worked to improve the infrastructure in three regional hospitals by constructing maternity waiting areas, wards, and operating rooms, and improving access to electricity.