BRAC's essential healthcare programme in South Sudan is a scalable model of community healthcare. The overall goal of the health programme is to improve health conditions and increase access to healthcare by providing basic health services in BRAC identifies and trains potential women from the communities to become community health promoters (CHPs) . CHPs identify and refer individuals with serious complications to local public and private health facilities, and earn a small income by selling healthcare products at the household level. In line with the free healthcare initiative, CHPs provide free services to pregnant and lactating mothers, and children who are under five.
CHPs are trained to diagnose and treat some basic ailments such as diarrhoea, dysentery, common cold, helminthiasis, anaemia, ringworm, scabies, hyperacidity and angular stomatitis. In regular health forums they discuss issues such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV prevention, family planning and maternal health, as well as sanitation. During regular household visits, the CHP encourages women to use modern methods of contraception. CHPs identify pregnant women during their household visits and inform the programme assistants, who then perform antenatal checkups at community level, raises awareness of pregnancy related care, delivery preparedness and possible signs and complications during pregnancy.
As a part of the government’s Child Survival programme, BRAC is implementing its Integrated Community Case Management (ICCM) programme with support from FCDO. The programme provides treatment of diarrhoea, pneumonia and malaria of children under five. BRAC’s nutrition programme in South Sudan initially started in 2011, with the support from Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF) to serve children with severe acute malnutrition (SAM) and raise awareness regarding infant and young child feeding (IYCF), hygiene, sanitation and food habits.
During their household visits, the Community-Based Drug Distributors (CBDs) identify suspected cases of malaria in under-five children and treat them as per the treatment guideline. The CBDs refer the patients to the nearest government health facilities in case they do not respond to the treatment. The CBDs follow up with the patients to see if the patients are taking anti-malarial medication properly and recovering from illness.
Under the financial support of UNICEF, BRAC is implementing the Emergency Nutrition Programme through which children under five years are screened and are provided with therapeutic treatment for severe acute malnutrition.