Delivering health door-to-door

Completed

Living Goods recruits, trains, equips and manages a network of community health workers who go door-to-door to provide health education, diagnoses and treatments, sell life-saving medicines, and make referrals to formal health centres as needed. They focus on pregnant women, mothers and children under five. We supported Living Goods to train and deploy 270 community health workers to provide high-quality home-based care to more than 220,000 villagers in Western Kenya.

Duration
2018-2019
Focus area
Access to Basic Services
country
Kenya
partner
Living Goods

Results achieved

In developing countries, where health systems are chronically underfunded and understocked, community health workers are often the first and only link to primary health care.

Living Goods recruits, trains, equips and manages a network of community health workers who go door-to-door to provide health education, diagnose and treatments, sell life-saving medicines and make referrals to formal health centres as needed. They focus on pregnant women, mothers and children under five. Their approach was shown to reduce under-five child mortality in Uganda by 27% for less than $3 - $4 per person per year.

Living Goods brought its community health worker model from Uganda to Kenya in 2015.

We supported its efforts to reach full coverage in western Kenya, strengthening its operations in Busia, Kakamega and Kisii counties in particular.

Over the past two years, the number of community health workers in the country has grown by 115%, and currently totals almost 2,700. This expanded network serves a population of over 1.51 million people, providing families with high-quality care.

Living Goods believes community health workers should be compensated for their essential roles, ideally by government. When possible, Living Goods works with government partners to help them structure performance-based stipends that help drive motivation and impact. In areas where community health workers are not currently being paid, Living Goods ensures that they get a supplemental stipend from the retail margin of the cost of the medicines and other essential products they sell. Living Goods also provides CHWs with motivating performance-based incentive payments when they achieve key health metric, such as supporting a new pregnancy or assessing a sick child.

The organisation believes that the local ownership of health systems and government partnership are key to achieving and sustaining lasting impact at scale. Over the past two years it has worked closely alongside the governments of five countries to deploy, manage and fund effective community health systems.