Community Partners International (CPI)’s Myanmar team has been busy supporting conflict-affected, hard-to-reach and under-served communities across Myanmar to establish and maintain COVID-19 prevention and response activities. Here are some of the ways that CPI has been mobilizing to help our ethnic and community-based health organization partners in the past few weeks.
Since 2012, Myanmar has made extraordinary gains against malaria. The confirmed number of malaria cases declined by 85% between 2012 and 2018, and the reported number of deaths by 95%. In 2018, only 19 deaths in Myanmar were officially attributed to malaria (1). However, the continued presence of malaria in remote and under-served communities, and the emergence of Myanmar as a hotspot of multidrug resistance, mean that we must guard against complacency. With support from the Access to Health Fund, Community Partners International (CPI) is working closely with community partners and other stakeholders to eliminate pockets of multidrug-resistant malaria through mobile mass screening in 10 prioritized townships in Kayin and Mon States in southeastern Myanmar, as part of an integrated package of health services.
With support from the Access to Health Fund, Community Partners International is working with ethnic and community-based health organizations in Myanmar to improve community health facilities. This initiative is helping to refurbish and equip 16 facilities so that they can deliver a basic essential package of health services to conflict-affected, hard-to-reach and under-served communities.
Bridging the Gap: Ethnic Health Organizations Present Plans of Action to Contribute to Health for All in Myanmar
On Wednesday January 22, 2019, more than 80 representatives from the Myanmar Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS), international governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and ethnic health organizations (EHOs) gathered in Yangon to witness five EHOs present their Plans of Action up to 2021 for developing their service readiness to deliver a Basic Essential Package of Health Services (BEPHS). The seminar, entitled “Health Systems Updates in the Ethnic Areas of Myanmar” showcased the key role and future potential of these EHOs in supporting Myanmar’s aspiration to attain universal health coverage (UHC) by 2030.
Dr. Si Thura, Executive Director of Community Partners International, reviews progress towards universal health coverage in Myanmar and identifies the key actions required to build the momentum needed to reach this goal.
In this period of reform, Myanmar has an unprecedented opportunity to achieve historic gains in advancing health for all. On Universal Health Coverage Day, I urge all of us who are involved in this cause to renew our efforts, and push forward progress so that we can reach every person with affordable, quality health care.
In Myanmar, violence against women and girls is a silent emergency. It takes many forms: domestic and intimate partner violence perpetrated within families; unwanted touching and sexual harassment on public transport; and violence occurring in conflict zones where women are particularly vulnerable. In a national survey carried out in 2015 and 2016, one in seven women in Myanmar reported that they had experienced violence since the age of 15. The real number is likely to be many more.
Community Partners International (CPI) is supporting efforts to end tuberculosis (TB) in Myanmar by promoting access to TB testing and treatment for conflict-affected, hard-to-reach and under-served populations. A crucial element of success in reaching these populations is to ensure strong cooperation between the Myanmar Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS) and the ethnic and community-based organizations that provide the first line of health services in these contexts.
On October 23 and 24, 2019, more than 300 delegates from civil society organizations (CSOs) nationwide gathered in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, at the Fourth National Forum of Myanmar Health Civil Society organized by Pyi Gyi Khin (PGK) with support from Community Partners International (CPI). They were joined by more than 80 representatives from international and national non-government organizations, donor agencies, and the Myanmar Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS). At the forum, delegates explored the role and progress of health CSOs in supporting the attainment of universal health coverage (UHC) in Myanmar. In addition, CPI unveiled a new mobile application to support the development of the Health CSOs Network in Myanmar.
Many women in remote and conflict-affected communities of Kachin State, Myanmar, lack access to reliable and comprehensive birth control options. Until recently in Myanmar, injectable hormonal birth control could only be provided by midwives. However, most communities in Kachin State do not have regular access to midwife services. In an important recent development, the Myanmar Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS) introduced new guidelines allowing auxiliary midwives (AMWs) to administer a self-injectable hormonal birth control option (known as DMPA-SC), once they have been sufficiently trained. As the AMW network can reach more remote communities, this change has the potential to transform access to reliable and comprehensive birth control for many thousands of women of reproductive age in Kachin State and across Myanmar.
On May 27 and 28, 2019 , Myanmar, 85 representatives from 60 civil society organizations (CSOs) delivering health services in Tanintharyi Region gathered in Dawei at a forum focused on universal health coverage (UHC) organized by Community Partners International (CPI) in partnership with Pyi Gyi Khin. The forum is part of a nationwide effort by CPI to raise awareness and understanding among health CSOs about UHC, and support their engagement and involvement in delivering a basic essential package of health services to their communities under the National Health Plan, 2017-2021 (NHP).