Isiolo: Navigating Challenges amid Drought and Political Transition

Isiolo continues to experience challenges and community health workers (CHWs) performance declined in Q2 following continued obstacles including a severe drought that has disrupted livelihoods, lack of digital reporting, and a challenging political environment.

CHWs need to be well supported with the Digitally-enabled, Equipped, Supervised, and Compensation (DESC) elements to deliver high-quality health care. With only about a third of the CHWs with functional phones in June and the remainder manually reporting, performance and reporting have been affected.

A community health supervisor shows a mother some illustrations on proper nutrition.

Government supervisors are also demotivated due to increased workload from multiple partners, and thus there was limited supervision during the period. That said, we aligned with the MoH in June on a hybrid approach where CHWs report using both the app and manual tools for other programs. Efforts are also underway to fully restore digital data collection, including supporting phone replacements – we expect the impact to be higher in Q3.

Meanwhile, Living Goods is working to restore political goodwill toward DESC-enabled community health following the government transition. We are engaging the new government to address the digital and other barriers to bring performance back to its original trajectory. We are hopeful that we will make progress on digital reporting and service delivery by Q3 and this aligns with the planned national electronic community health information system (eCHIS) rollout.

Amidst the challenges, a silver lining is the notable increase in immunization rates. In Q2, 94% of the children 9-23 months assessed by CHWs were fully immunized, versus 88% in the same period last year.

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