According to Health Management Information System reports, institutional maternal death rates have dropped in Uganda from 146 per 100,000 in 2013/2014 to 118 per 100,000 in 2014/15. This trend can be attributed among others to increased institutional deliveries, personal statement and statement of purpose quality improvement interventions in hospitals, and improved and more effective antenatal care to prevent, detect and treat problems such as malaria, anemia, HIV/AIDS and other infections which are important indirect causes of maternal deaths.

Despite very significant sector progress in maternal health indicators, much work still needs to be done to achieve the Health Sector Strategic & Investmen ghostwriting berlin plan (HSSIP) targets regarding maternal mortality ratio.

Some of the main factors underlying maternal deaths in the country include negative health seeking behaviors, delays in reaching health center service points as well as in receiving adequate health care. In addition, the per capita expenditure on Essential Medicines and Health Supplies (EMHS) is about $2.4, lower than the estimated requirement by HSSIP of USD $12. Gaps thus remain in the ability of the healthcare system to meet the medicine needs of the population.

New partnerships and innovation can play a major role in addressing these issues.

In the first acceleration cycle, key national stakeholders convened by UNFPA and Outbox have identified two pressing challenges in this field for which youth are called to develop creative solutions. Ideas can be submitted in any one of the two challenge areas identified by specifically selecting an opportunity area to be addressed or by proposing an opportunity area under the given challenges.

How can we improve access to essential medicines and health supplies to improve maternal health in Uganda?

#1

A number of efforts are ongoing to improve access to pharmaceuticals and supplies in the area of maternal health in Uganda. Ongoing efforts range from changes in procurement procedures between public health facilities and National Medical Stores, to initiatives undertaken to improve access to “tracer medicines” within public and private health institutions. The latter in particular has resulted in 64% of health units in Uganda having no stock outs for the 2014/2015 financial year. This has been mainly attributed to

the growth in village health team-led (VHT) interventions as alternative distribution channels in rural areas, increase in health sector staffing, and deliberate focus on increasing access to tracer medicines.

However, significant challenges still exist for the distribution of Essential Medicines and Health Supplies (EMHS) in maternal health that include among others human resource constraints (adequacy, distribution disparities and skill gaps); communication breakdown between communities, health facilities, district health offices and the central level which leads to poor planning and forecasting; communities not utilizing the reproductive health services put in place; lack or limited access to supplies and consumables; and abuse of the referral systems.

As such, we are calling on youth to develop solutions that can improve access to maternal health pharmaceuticals and supplies in Uganda.

POTENTIAL OPPORTUNITY AREAS FOR SOLUTIONS INCLUDE:

Improve accountability systems right from suppliers to prescription and dispensing;

Improve information flow between expectant mothers, communities and health facilities to drive demand and utilization of available maternal services in their local communities thus reducing delays and supporting in planning processes;

Use of data to improve forecasting of essential medicines and health supply needs within communities and public health facilities;

Improve data management and monitoring systems at health facilities;

Improve human resource distribution, skilling and accountability;

Surprise us: Here, you can submit your solution in an opportunity area not listed.

How can we improve the use of open data to improve healthcare planning, monitoring and delivery?

#2

Great efforts have been made by stakeholders in the area of sexual and reproductive health to improve healthcare planning and delivery using electronic medical record systems and data aggregation platforms. Digital data collection tools that include SMS, smartphone apps are also being utilized by various organizations.

However, given the advent of these tools, more opportunities still exist to further improve healthcare delivery using open data. Open data is any kind of data made available by a business, organization or individual that is freely available for the public to use, analyze and republish.

Open data can include among others a list of medical service providers, a list of approved pharmacists, the distribution of finances to health facilities, a list of public health facilities, or a list of fresh water points.

Open data can be leveraged to track health service delivery, or improve access to healthcare. It also presents an opportunity to track and measure progress towards the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We are looking for simple tools that leverage open data to improve healthcare delivery in Uganda.

POTENTIAL OPPORTUNITY AREAS FOR SOLUTIONS INCLUDE:

Tools to enable individuals choose and locate health services thus reducing delays;

Tools to enable participatory and citizen involvement in health service delivery;

Tools to track customer service & patient satisfaction;

Accountability on service provision like cost of medicines;

Linking management information systems together to track individual access to services, identify pockets of need and response;

Surprise us: Here, you can submit your solution in an opportunity area not listed.