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Transforming Community Health: Study Demonstrates 27 Percent Reduction in Child Mortality

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BY Living Goods • November 30, 2016

Living Goods Community Health Promoter with Baby A little over a decade ago, Living Good launched an innovative model that seeks to transform the way community health is delivered. Community health workers are often the first and only link to health services and care for millions of families. Unfortunately, many community health systems across the globe face challenges that severely thwart their potential to deliver health impact—from unreliable supply chains for critical medicines to managing, supervising, and motivating community health workers.

To help overcome these challenges, Living Goods works in partnership with national and local government leaders and partners like BRAC to recruit, train, equip, and manage teams of Community Health Promoters who go door-to-door educating families on key health behaviors and selling impactful and affordable products. Community Health Promoters earn a small, motivating income through the sales of products and performance-based incentives for supporting households with pregnant women and newborn children.

Here’s how it works:

Living Goods Overview from Living Goods on Vimeo.

We’re very excited to share the findings of a randomized controlled trial that supports the reduction of under-five child mortality by 27 percent in the areas the Living Goods and BRAC Community Health Promoters serve in Uganda. The three-year study, funded by the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, evaluated the health impact of the Living Goods and BRAC entrepreneurial community health worker program in Uganda. A working paper of the study is now available on the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

The evaluation demonstrated a reduction in under-five mortality by 27 percent, and infant mortality by 33 percent in areas that Living Goods and BRAC Community Health Promoters serve.

A highly-accomplished group of researchers worked with Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) and Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) to carry out the randomized evaluation assessing the impact of the Living Goods and BRAC program in Uganda. The evaluation included 214 rural villages across 10 districts—involving a total sample size of over 8,000 households.

The evaluation demonstrated a reduction in under-five mortality by 27 percent, and infant mortality by 33 percent in areas that Living Goods and BRAC Community Health Promoters serve.

These significant reductions were supported by an increase in health knowledge, preventative behavior, case management of malaria and diarrhea, and home visits. Three key findings include:

For more information visit the key summary of findings on IPA’s website, along with a blog post authored by the researchers of the study. The study findings suggest that an entrepreneurial community health delivery model can significantly reduce child deaths and improve access to health education and services. By working in partnership with government leaders, funders, partners, and supporters we can expand and deepen our health impact to save as many lives as possible. Together, we can ensure that every family has access to an effective, well-stocked, and motivated community health worker.

Together, we can ensure that every family has access to an effective, well-stocked, and motivated community health worker.
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