How to Improve Access to Malaria Treatment in the Private Sector

PSI recently hosted a webinar on how to transform the market for malaria rapid diagnostic tests (mRDTs) in the private sector. Panelists from PSI and four partner organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Malaria Consortium, dove deep into the lessons

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Delivering Goods from the Sky

By Justin Matheson-Turner, PSI How do you quickly and effectively resolve medicine and commodity stock-outs in hard-to-reach communities? In Madagascar, where 80 percent of the population lives in remote rural communities, physical access to healthcare is often limited by impassable road conditions. To solve this, PSI is employing a quick and easy way to ensure

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Medicines360 and Population Services International Announce New Partnership to Expand Access to Hormonal IUDs to Women in Africa

New Partnership to Tackle Disparities in Women’s Contraception in Africa.

San Francisco, CA and Washington, DC – September 26, 2016 – Medicines360, a global nonprofit pharmaceutical company, and Population Services International (PSI), a leading global health organization working in reproductive health, announced today an agreement to expand access to Medicines360’s hormonal intrauterine device (IUD) (levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system) 52 mg.  Under this agreement, the partners will

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Telling Our Nutrition Story through the Eyes of the Beneficiaries

By Mathias Pollock, Technical Advisor Malaria and Child Survival, PSI In 2013, PSI Madagascar and UNICEF began implementing a two-year pilot project to introduce Zaza Tomady, a micronutrient powder (MNP), through its Top Réseau social franchise clinics and the community health workers associated with them. MNP’s are packets containing essential vitamins and minerals that can

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3 Key Steps to Win Men’s Support for Family Planning

By Ashley Jackson, Technical Advisor, PSI Marketing is all about understanding your customer – their hopes and fears, expectations of your product, and more. But what happens when the customer needs the approval or money from someone else in order to access a product? In many countries, a leading reason for not using contraception is

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Honore Works Hard to Meet the Needs of his Young Family

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My name is Honore, I am 35 years old. I am married and a father of 4 children; my elder son is 7 years old and my youngest daughter is just 12 months. We have a two-room house with an outside kitchen.

I left school in year 7 of primary school. My parents could no longer support my studies. We mainly make a living from agricultural and fishing activities. During the hunger gap (December-March), I have to look for other daily jobs to get a source of daily income to fulfill my family’s needs.

My wife is a housewife; she helps me a lot with my daily occupations. My job plays an important role in my life, and so do my children. Even though that I am the main money provider, I also cook especially when my wife is absent. It is also part of my chores to fetch firewood.

I give instructions and advice to my wife about the food my children should eat. I pay attention to food preparation and the way the food is cooked to avoid diarrhea. I also advice my wife on how to raise my children; this I see as my responsibility.

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Madagascar: A Mother's Tale of Nutrition and Health

UntitledMy name is Odette, I am 27 years old and married. We have three children, the eldest is 5 years old and the youngest is just 8 months. We live in a small hut with an outside kitchen.

I left school when I was in year 9 at primary school. We make our living from farm work and fishing.

My husband and I earn around 50,000Ar ($25USD) per month; this amount varies greatly, depending on what we earn from our harvest and fishing activities. We depend a lot on nature being both farmers and fishermen. Every year, we face a hungry period when there is no harvest. This period lasts from December to March. I have to work to support and help my husband to face the hardships of life. I work in the field or carry bricks during the day or do any kind of task that is proposed to me.

My children are my reasons to live; I invest all of myself to see them succeed in school and life. Being a mother, I make sure that my children are served foods that are easy to digest and that are not too fatty to avoid indigestion. I pay particular attention to hygiene, to the cleanliness of food and of kitchen utensils and dishes to avoid sicknesses.

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What's that in Katy Perry's Hands?

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You may have to strain your eyes a bit to see it, but singer Katy Perry is holding Zazatomandy, a micronutrient powder that PSI/Madagascar distributes to caregivers of children aged 6-23 months. The product is aimed to take on the problem of undernutrition in a country where UNICEF estimates that half of all the children in Madagascar are chronically malnourished.

Perry, a brand new UNICEF ambassador, joined the UN’s children organization to tour its work in Madagascar.

“I am grateful to UNICEF for giving me the opportunity to see first-hand how its programs make a real difference in children’s lives. Support for UNICEF is saving children, I am a witness to it,” said Perry following the trip.

Aid flows to Madagascar slowed in the wake of a bloodless coup in 2009 that led to continuing political crisis. Perry joined UNICEF to see the schools it supports. An estimated three in ten children in Madagascar who start primary school complete it.

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Partners Launch Pilot Program to Combat Undernutrition in Madagascar

By Ietje Reerink, Senior Technical Assistant, Research and Programs, PSI/Madagascar

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Intensive interpersonal communication by trained community health workers (CHWs), radio messages and mobile video units will support a new pilot program that aims to tackle one persistent form of malnutrition in Madagascar. In late February 2013, PSI/Madagascar started distributing the new Micronutrient Powder (MNP) branded Zazatomady targeting caregivers of children aged 6-23 months.

With UNICEF financial and technical support, the National Nutrition Office, the Ministry of Health and PSI/Madagascar are implementing an 18-month pilot project called Fortidom (fortification a domicile in French, or home fortification). Fortidom is an intervention that promotes food diversification and distributes Zazatomady in two rural areas (Vavatenina and Fénérive-Est) and in two urban areas (Antananarivo and Fianarantsoa) of Madagascar.

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Evaluating Maternal and Infant Health Interventions Based on Inequality

A study by Dr Aluísio JD Barros PhD and others looked at the progress of 12 maternal, newborn, and child health interventions towards achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5. A particular emphasis is placed on within-country inequalities to see how maternal, newborn, and child health interventions vary in each country. By comparing the interventions in each country, the researchers hoped to understand what ways inequality may or may not be affecting their progress.

So, they took the data from national surveys in 54 Countdown to 2015 countries between Jan 1, 2000, and Dec 31, 2008 and re-analysed the data for 12 maternal, newborn, and child health interventions. The data was then compared across coverage for income groups and assessed inequalities with a pair of indices for absolute inequality and two for relative inequality.

According to the abstract, the researchers found:

Skilled birth attendant coverage was the least equitable intervention, according to all four summary indices, followed by four or more antenatal care visits. The most equitable intervention was early initation of breastfeeding. Chad, Nigeria, Somalia, Ethiopia, Laos, and Niger were the most inequitable countries for the interventions examined, followed by Madagascar, Pakistan, and India. The most equitable countries were Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. Community-based interventions were more equally distributed than those delivered in health facilities. For all interventions, variability in coverage between countries was larger for the poorest than for the richest individuals.

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Madagascar’s Drug Resistant Malaria

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWZRymDaDGk?version=3]The rising drug resistance to malaria drugs in Madagascar is examined in this report from France 24. The report finds that the older malaria medicines, despite being significantly less effective, are still being used by the majority of people when they fall ill. Less than half of all children under the age of five sleep

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