Thoughts from the Last Mile Welcome to the VillageReach Blog
07.23 2019

On July 17, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) a public health emergency of international concern.

The WHO declaration is a serious matter, and one that VillageReach does not take lightly.  We support WHO’s decision to raise the global profile of this outbreak, as many lives have been lost and new resources and solutions are needed.  WHO reported on July 18th that there have been 2522 confirmed and probable cases of Ebola in this region and 1698 deaths since the beginning of the outbreak. 135 of the infections have been in health workers. Since the Ebola outbreak is taking place in a conflict zone, containment and response has been difficult.

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07.08 2019

Supply chains are critically important to the success of any reproductive health program. Efficiently run supply chains can help eliminate barriers so that no woman leaves a health clinic empty handed. However, supply chains are also expensive to operate. The process of identifying more efficient supply chain designs can be a challenging process requiring significant investments in data collection and modeling. Despite the benefits associated with exploring and implementing more streamlined supply chain designs, programs often lack the time, resources, or data to pursue an intensive supply chain re-design.

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06.25 2019

Originally posted on Medium.com

NextWing (flynextwing.com) conducted test flights at Malawi’s Kasungu drone testing corridor in March 2019


Drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are an emerging technology that hold a lot of promise to improve access to health care for the most underserved populations in hard-to-reach areas.
Additionally, it can provide time savings in critical situations in busy urban areas with heavy traffic congestion. Despite becoming commonplace in recreational settings, and being utilized in various sectors, drones are still a nascent technology when it comes to transporting medical products. With every flight test, VillageReach continues to uncover new insights that prove invaluable to pave the way towards drone introduction and integration into health systems. VillageReach is aware of the complexity and technical expertise required to test drones and the findings gleaned from similar projects in other countries are critical to ensure readiness in deploying the technology as a viable supply chain solution.

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06.13 2019

Originally posted on World Bank Blogs.

At the heart of universal health coverage (UHC) is leaving no one behind.  Remarkable efforts are underway to energize culture, activate politicians and align global actors to prioritize actions that reach the poorest and most marginalized people first.  The health, economic and social benefits of UHC are well-documented.  At VillageReach, three additional reasons inspire us to lead with the last in order to ensure access to affordable and quality health services for all.

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06.03 2019

Many youth in Malawi are told that contraceptives are only for married adults. Yet so many of Malawi’s young people have expressed an unmet need. There are also unique experiences, preferences and challenges that adolescent girls and boys face in understanding, accessing and using contraceptives in Malawi. VillageReach worked with young researchers to tap into real insights that advance the development of sexual and reproductive health services and products tailored specifically for young people.

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05.16 2019

“A reason, a season or a lifetime” is a saying that I can appreciate, and with the transition of the Kwitanda Community Health Project (KCHP) to Maikhanda Trust it was a season for VillageReach. In 2008, VillageReach began its journey, alongside the JBJ Foundation, to support the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) to achieve better results for maternal and child health in the Kwitanda community of Balaka district in Malawi.

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05.15 2019

Originally posted on the OpenLMIS website.

The OpenLMIS initiative is proud to announce the latest release of our software, OpenLMIS version 3.6.  This release incorporates valuable feedback from OpenLMIS users, implementers, and global supply chain management experts. Our newest features aim to improve user experience, and specifically simplify processes related to ordering commodities and collating data for decision-making.  3.6 is a major accomplishment for the Initiative and a milestone for public health supply chain stakeholders globally.

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05.08 2019

Originally posted on The Medium.

Many health facilities across Malawi don’t have enough trained pharmacy staff to adequately manage stock and dispense medicines. These tasks often fall on health care providers, who already have many other responsibilities, namely caring for patients. In some cases, even a ground laborer or a security guard — who may have no training in pharmacy management — must step in to help.

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05.02 2019

Last month Cyclone Idai, one of the strongest storms that touched Mozambique in nearly 20 years, tore through Beira and across Sofala province. What people weren’t expecting was something even worse. Cyclone Kenneth made landfall as a Category 4 cyclone on Wednesday, April 24th in Cabo Delgado province, and swept Pemba away. Days after the cyclone, northern Mozambique continued experiencing unrelenting rains, once again affecting nearly 190,000 people.

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Malawi healthcare worker