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Technical Assistance to the Reproductive and Child Health Plan, Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone starts from a very low base in terms of public
health, and in terms of service capacity, following the collapse of services
associated with its ten-year civil war that ended in 2001. In 2007, United
Nations Development Programme classified Sierra Leone at the bottom of the
Human Development Index. Contributing to this low status are Sierra Leone’s
appalling health outcomes. The 2005 statistics estimated under-five mortality
rate and maternal mortality ratio of 267 per 1000 live-births and 2100 per
100,000 live-births respectively. The country suffers from diseases for which
cost-effective interventions are available including malaria, tuberculosis,
acute respiratory diseases, and diarrhoea. Fertility rates are high due to low
contraceptive utilization and malnutrition is widespread among children and
lactating mothers. Malnutrition is the biggest contributor to child mortality –
without it, 57% of deaths would not have occurred.
Leone’s Ministry of Health and Sanitation has focused on the development of
reproductive and child health, to lead the transformation of health, and its
ambitions to meet the Millennium Development Goals. Following the development
of new policies for child and reproductive health in 2007, the creation of a
new reproductive and child health strategic plan represents a commitment by all
stakeholders to transform mothers’ and children’s lives in Sierra Leone.
Options is managing a programme of support to Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Health and
Sanitation to provide technical assistance to the implementation
of its Reproductive and Child Health
The programme is aimed at
improving the financing, management and delivery of sustainable and replicable
pro poor health services to ensure the achievement of the national Reproductive
and Child Health Strategic Plan to
reduce the appalling maternal, under five and infant mortality rates.
The Technical Assistance to the Sierra Leone Reproductive and Child Health Plan is a three-year
programme, 2010–2013, funded by the Department for International Development (DFID).
To learn more about the programme, contact Caroline Baker at