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IMA prioritizes delivering essential health packages that improve maternal, newborn and child health for ASSP. (Photo by Christopher Glass)
$283 million | UK’s Department for International Development | 2012–2018

The Access to Primary Health Care Project, known locally as Accès aux Soins de Santé Primaires or ASSP, aims to strengthen priority interventions such as the treatment of malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea; nutrition; obstetric and neonatal care; family planning; immunization; and water, hygiene and sanitation that are delivered through the health system. ASSP supports an estimated 8,980,238 people across 52 health zones.

In fiscal year 2016, the WASH component surged forward. IMA World Health, in consortium with partners SANRU, World Vision and Caritas Congo Asbl, supports five Provincial Health Divisions (Kasai, Kasai Central, Nord-Ubangi, Maniema and Tshopo) to implement WASH projects at clinics and hospitals. Nearly 60,000 people now have access to safe drinking water and 56,852 to sanitary toilets.

With support from the Against Malaria Foundation, ASSP distributed 2 million long-lasting insecticidal nets, or LLINs, using the project’s Hang Up and Track strategy for added transparency and accountability. ASSP trained local health workers and volunteers on basic computing, data collection using Open Data Kit software on Android cellphones and data management using Excel. Health workers use the phones to collect basic demographic data, GPS coordinates and information on malaria prevalence and bed net usage. The phones also play an instructional video, recorded in the local tribal language, on the importance of bed net usage to prevent malaria and how to care for and repair nets. ASSP goes beyond simple distribution to ensure all LLINs distributed have been hung and are being used correctly, overcoming a significant barrier in efforts to combat and eliminate malaria.

Key achievements by end of year three (2015)

  • 779,022 births during the year were attended by skilled health personnel
  • Reached 834,782 children under one year of age with vaccinations against measles
  • 675,287 pregnant women were provided with two doses of intermittent preventative treatment as prophylaxis for malaria
  • More than $16 million in medicines were procured for distribution and use at health facilities within ASSP’s 52 health zones
  • By the end of year three, 21 new health centers were built and 93 health facilities were rehabilitated.