We have been searching for community-based solutions that are improving health for mothers and children, developed by Malawians, for Malawians! In 2017, we held an open call for people to submit their solutions. We selected the Top 5 solutions to recognise, support and research them.
Although maternal and child health has improved over the last ten years, 7 in 10 women still report problems in accessing quality health care and 1 in 8 children die from preventable diseases such as malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea.
We heard from many people (community organisations, health workers, business owners, students, government workers) who have implemented solutions that are making health care for mothers and children more inclusive, effective and affordable.
Solutions that address the leading conditions killing women, babies and older children e.g. complications during child birth or infections
Solutions that improve health and wellbeing of mothers and babies
Solutions that empower women to have thriving families
All submitted solutions were reviewed by an independent panel of experts who reviewed solutions based on how innovative, inclusive, effective, affordable, need focused, sustainable and user friendly they are.
CHIPATALA CHA PA FONI (HEALTH CENTRE BY PHONE)
Chipatala Cha Pa Foni (Health Centre by Phone) is a toll-free health hotline in Malawi staffed by trained health workers who provide Ministry of Health-verified information and referrals over the phone on all health topics including reproductive, maternal and child health, nutrition, and HIV. Through CCPF, women and caregivers can also sign up to receive personal text or voice reminders on maternal and child health topics specific to their month of pregnancy or their child’s age.
This social innovation was founded by Soyapi Mumba and Clement Mwazambumba. The two shared their idea through a national campaign, run by the Ministry of Health and Concern Worldwide, entitled ‘Share an idea save a life’. It has been refined and piloted by VillageReach with support from the Malawi Ministry of Health, Concern Worldwide, Johnson and Johnson, USAID, Seattle International Foundation, Airtel, GIZ, NJIRA-PCI and Vitol Foundation.
EFFIE CHIPETA PROFILE
Panel Member: Academic in Maternal and Child health,
Organisation: University of Malawi, College of Medicine Reproductive Health Centre
Effie Chipeta, PhD, is a Social Scientist and qualified Nurse and Midwife. Dr. Chipeta is a seasoned researcher with 20 years of qualitative research experience. Following this, she is a Senior Research Fellow at the College of Medicine- Malaria Alert Centre. For the past 12 years Dr. Chipeta has worked with College of Medicine, Centre for Reproductive Health focussing on operations research, baseline and impact evaluation studies within the fields of; sexual and reproductive health rights, and malaria. Aside from this Dr. Chipeta is an Honorary Lecturer in the school of Public Health. She is an Academic supervisor and a reviewer for some peer reviewed journals. She is also a member of a number of technical working groups in the Ministry of Health.
Panel Member: Front line practitioner in maternal and child health services
Organisation: OB/GYN and Family medicine specialist (MoH and COM)
Martha Makwero is a versatile frontline worker in maternal and child health care in Malawi. She works as a clinician in primary care as well as secondary and tertiary settings, appreciating service delivery challenges from the grassroots across all tiers of care to the tertiary level. She is also a researcher in implementation research in primary health care. Martha is also a PHD student; she is currently engaged in a PHD study looking at implementation of interpersonal aspects of quality of care and models of how that may be improved for better outcomes in Malawi. Additionally, Martha is engaged in academia, serving as a clinical lecturer at the College of Medicine, School of Public Health and Family Medicine.
Panel Member: District level Ministry of Health
Organisation: District Health Office, Ministry of Health
Medson Matchaya is a graduate of the University of Malawi, College of Medicine. He is the Chief Medical Officer in the Ministry of Health and is also the District Health Officer for Blantyre district. Dr Matchaya is also a part time lecturer at the Malawi College of Health Sciences and has a particular interest in public health services. As a District Health Officer, he is responsible for the management of all health services in the district which includes preventive as well as curative. He is also responsible for the supervision of all health facilities in the district be it public, private or CHAM. In addition, he is the Vice Chairperson of the Catholic Health Services Commission board, and a member of the Bio Clinical Partners Limited board. He has also acted as District Commissioner for Blantyre and Nsanje districts on several occasions. Dr Matchaya is a recipient of several awards with the most recent being the 2016 Malawi Broadcasting Co-operation Innovators Award in the Health category.
Panel Member: Social Innovator
Organisation: Polytechnic Innovation Hub
Misael Buliani is a member of the UNICEF Innovation Hub, also known as the Innovation Hub Malawi, based at the Polytechnic College. Within the Innovation Hub, Misael Buliani is the Innovation and Intellectual Property specialist. He is involved in various organizations such as: The Young African Leaders Initiative, Better Me Better Africa, The Mentorship and Philanthropic Center, and Entrepreneurs In Action Malawi. In addition, he runs a community based organization that aims to empower rural communities through trainings in IT solutions. He has coordinated a project entitled ‘Emergency Delivery Solutions towards Maternal Deaths and Infant Mortality’ and the development of a number of health innovation mobile applications. By the UK’s ‘Business Amplified’, Misael Buliani was awarded the ‘Young Innovative Entrepreneur’ award. Misael Buliani also acts as a mentor to uprising innovators in technology.
Panel Member: Expert in e-health and mobile technology
Organisation: Mhub Malawi
Rachel Sibande is the founder of Malawi’s first technology hub. Mhub is an incubator for technology innovators and emerging entrepreneurs through training, skills development and mentorship. Rachel is an alumnus of former US President Barack Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative. She is also a recipient of the Anita Borg Scholarship, now known as the TechWomen Scholarship Programme from Google. She became Malawi’s ambassador for the Next Einstein Forum Initiative which promotes science, technology, engineering and mathematics in 2016. Rachel is the first local licensee for TEDx Lilongwe, three years after delivering her first technology for agricultural development. Forbes Magazine named Rachel as one of Africa’s 30 most promising entrepreneurs under the age of 30 in 2016.
Panel Member: Private sector
Organisation: Telecom Networks Malawi
Mr. Sumaice Musamaleke is the Regional Finance Manager for Telekom Networks Malawi Plc. He is a holder of Masters in Business Administration (MBA), holds the Bachelor of Accountancy from the University of Malawi and he is a Certified Internal Auditor. Sumaice Musamaleke has over 13 years’ experience in finance, internal audit, fraud prevention and investigations and enterprise risk management. He worked as Finance Manager for GOAL Malawi (an international Non-Governmental Organization), Internal Auditor for Air Malawi and Malawi Government’s Civil Service.
Panel Member: National Ministry of Health
Organisation: MoH Reproductive Health Unit
Owen Chikhwaza is a Public Healthcare manager, trained economist with a medical background. Currently, he is the Deputy Director of the Reproductive Health Unit of the Malawi Ministry of Health. Within this post, Dr Chikhwaza provides policy guidance to all Reproductive Health stakeholders in the country in line with the Ministry of Health’s strategic objectives. With regards to his educational background, Dr Chikwaza has attained a Masters in Health Economics and Policy. In addition to this he is a holder of a Bachelor of Medicine; Bachelor of Surgery degree. In all Dr Chikwaza aims to make a difference in people’s lives by improving their quality of life.