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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Sustainability/Country Ownership


S/GHD strengthens sustainability of health delivery systems by supporting partner countries as they work to meet the healthcare needs of their own people and eventually achieve full country ownership. S/GHD’s goal is to help Ambassadors build political will in countries, in pursuit of sustainable health systems without barriers to care.

Date: 08/27/2013 Description: Consul General Taylor Ruggles Receiving Award from MEC Dhlomo - State Dept Image

Examples of how U.S. global health diplomacy has strengthened sustainability:

South Africa:
On August 27, an awards ceremony in Durban, South Africa for approximately 2,000 community caregivers took place in the presence of high level provincial representation from the KwaZulu-Natal Province Office of the Premier, the Department of Health, and Department of Social Development, as well as key representatives from the U.S. Government, USAID, PEPFAR, CDC and long-standing USAID partner, BroadReach Healthcare. Read more here.

Date: 10/04/2012 Description: Pregnant mothers waiting to deliver at Chikomeni Health Center. Most of the women waiting were referred by Safe Motherhood Action Group (SMAG) members. © Saving Mothers, Giving Life Partnership Kenya:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) systematically worked with Kenyan counterparts to build local capacity in management and leadership, and in epidemiology, and science. Most senior scientific and leadership positions that were previously held by CDC staff members, in the CDC/Kenyan collaboration, have transitioned to Kenyans. They include overall leadership of the collaboration, as well as senior leadership positions in malaria, international emerging infections, tuberculosis and surveillance. The Kenyan staff secure national funding and provide leadership in the design, implementation, and conduct of high quality public health research studies, including: an evaluation of efforts to prevent or reduce the effects of malaria in pregnancy as part of the Malaria in Pregnancy Consortium; an assessment of the RTS, S malaria vaccine, a trial of a candidate tuberculosis vaccine; and a study to determine the causes of meningitis and encephalitis.

India and Ethiopia:
With the aim of accelerating reductions in child mortality, the U.S. co-hosted, in partnership with the Governments of India and Ethiopia and in coordination with UNICEF, a global “Child Survival Call to Action” in June 2012. Today, more than 166 governments including the United States have signed the pledge since its launch. In addition, 197 civil society organizations, 220 faith-based organizations, and nearly 2,000 individuals have signed their own pledges of support. Since the event, the Government of Ethiopia convened 20 African nations in January 2013 to sharpen their national child survival strategies.

Multi-Country:
By training graduates in applied epidemiology, CDC’s Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) has helped build capacity of foreign countries to improve and strengthen their public health system and infrastructure. Trained host country epidemiologists can improve the functioning of their country public health system through their development and improvement of disease surveillance systems, and strengthening of disease detection, control, and response capacity. Since 1980, CDC has helped establish 50 programs worldwide, many of which have “graduated” and maintain their program independently. Furthermore, approximately 75% of all graduates stay with the Ministry of Health, and many have moved into prominent public health leadership positions whether as national coordinators of their countries’ FETP programs or as directors of emergency response, national TB programs, chronic disease programs or laboratory services.

Namibia:
The Government of the Republic of Namibia (GRN) is stepping up its ownership of the fight against AIDS in Namibia. The GRN currently provides 50 percent of financing for the national HIV/AIDS response and has committed to increasing its financial contribution to 70 percent by FY 2015. As articulated in Namibia’s Partnership Framework, over the next few years, the U.S. Government will move from direct support of service delivery to increased provision of technical assistance to strengthen the capacity of national services. Of particular importance, the GRN has agreed to absorb many U.S. Government-funded healthcare worker positions into the public health system.


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