PSI/Somaliland was founded in 2007 for the social marketing of safe water tablets and long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets and has since expanded to include programs for maternal and child health to improve the health status of Somali people especially women, children and the most vulnerable. Working in partnership with the private and public sector and with other development partners, PSI provides life-saving products, clinical services and behavioral change communication interventions throughout Somaliland.
PSI/Somaliland estimates that in 2015, its products and services helped avert 36,259 DALYs, including, by health area:
- 1,807 FP DALYs
- 33,102 MNCH DALYs
- 1,351 WASH DALYs
PSI/Somaliland’s family planning programs also provided 3,501 couple-years of protection.
Pre-Packaged Therapy Kits for Pneumonia Treatment
In 2014, PSI introduced a high-quality, pre-packaged pediatric dose of Amoxicillin tablets (125mg/250mg) for non-severe cases of pneumonia through the public sector Maternal and Child Health Clinics (MCH) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health. To drive awareness of the new product and to promote early care seeking behavior for children showing the two danger signs of pneumonia, PSI launched a behavior change communication campaign to encourage mothers to visit their local MCH. By mid-2015, the program will have distributed over 300,000 pneumonia treatment kits through the public sector. Ultimately, the program will be scaled up by introducing the branded product into the private sector through the Bulsho Kaab pharmacies, ensuring better access for each wealth quintile.
For the prevention of diarrhea, PSI socially markets BiyoSifeeye, a simple and cost-effective water purification tablet to ensure access to safe drinking water in Somaliland. Each tablet of BiyoSifeeye treats 20 liters of water and is sold in affordable strips of ten tablets, which allows consumers with minimal disposable cash to afford safe drinking water for their families.
For the management of diarrhea cases, PSI promotes the use of oral rehydration salts and zinc supplementation tablets by socially marketing Shuban Daweeye diarrhea treatment kits.
PSI promotes the benefits of both products, educates caregivers and health providers on prevention and treatment of diarrhea, and ensures availability of these life-saving products through private and public sector channels (in both branded and unbranded variants).
Home-Level Fortification with Micronutrient Powders
In Somaliland, anemia prevalence among children 6-59 months is 45.2 percent. Iron deficiency is similarly high in children 6-59 months old (59.6 percent) and prevalence of vitamin A deficiency (25.6 percent) also indicates prevalence levels exceeding the 20 perecent WHO cut off for severe undernutrition. To address the burden of malnutrition, PSI Somaliland introduced a new micronutrient powder (MNP) to improve iron status and reduce anemia among children under five years of age. The product launched in 2014 and was distributed through the social franchise network of pharmacies Bulsho Kaab. In 2015, the product will be distributed through retail locations across the country, ensuring ease of access and increased health impact.
Prevention and Treatment of Post-partum Hemorrhage
In 2010, PSI developed a country-specific, branded communication strategy to introduce misoprostol targeting women of reproductive age. Messages are delivered through media and interpersonal communication sessions. PSI, in close collaboration with local institutions, facilitated training of providers on active management of the third stage of labour and safe and correct use of misoprostol. Misoprostol is provided to health facilities throughout Somaliland with delivery services and qualified personnel at subsidized prices to create universal access. Monitoring and supervision visits to health facilities are conducted quarterly in collaboration with the Ministry of Health.
Increasing Demand and Access to Modern Contraceptives
PSI employs innovative approaches to overcome significant consumer and provider-driven barriers to contraceptive use and adapts its program to the socio-cultural and economic environment of the target population. PSI distributes birth spacing products and conducts interpersonal communication sessions to women of reproductive age in order to create demand and increase utilization of modern methods. Birth spacing products are distributed nationally through private pharmacies and in public health facilities. PSI launched oral contraceptives in 2010 and injectables in 2011.
Behavior Change Communication
Encouraging healthy behaviors and empowering people to make informed decisions regarding their health is at the center of PSI’s work. PSI’s behavior change communication uses commercial marketing techniques to position products and services with messages that promotes knowledge and help reinforce healthy behaviors. Communication campaigns are disseminated to PSI’s target audiences through a variety of channels, such as mass media (national TV and radio channels), peer education, community theater, interpersonal communication, information, education and communication materials and special events.
Interpersonal Communication Program
In 2010, PSI launched a series of health education sessions reaching women of reproductive age with essential reproductive and child health information. Sessions are designed to increase women’s knowledge to make informed decisions regarding modern birth spacing methods as well as other topics such as safe delivery, infant and young child feeding practices and importance of antenatal and postnatal care. PSI has a team of nine interpersonal communication agents (qualified nurses and midwifes) reaching approximately 500 women monthly. The sessions are conducted in the four main towns of Somaliland (Hargeisa, Burao, Berbera and Boroma) in a dedicated facility near a health center. Women attend three consecutive sessions in a week and they are continuously followed up by PSI community organizers in order to track status of their pregnancy, practices, life-saving behaviors and recalling of key messages. The program is currently being expanded by leveraging community health promoters to deliver smaller community based sessions to compliment the larger and lengthier IPC sessions.
Social Franchise Network
In July 2011, PSI designed a social franchise network – Bulsho-Kaab (translated as “community helper”) – to harness the potential of private pharmacies in Somaliland and contribute to the provision of high-quality services and products.
Bulsho-Kaab network offers an integrated package of services that includes a range of reproductive and child health interventions of high-quality services and products at affordable prices to low-income communities.
Private providers benefit from increased revenues that are generated through an expanding clientele attracted by PSI demand generating efforts through media and community awareness, specialized training and on-job supportive supervision provided by PSI’s team of trained medical detailers. Currently Bulsho-Kaab has 203 members in five regions of Somaliland.
- World Health Organization
- Shaping the Family Planning Market by Strengthening the Public Sector
PSI considers total market approaches to be critical for achieving universal health coverage, especially when it comes to contraception. This program brief presents cases, supported by several different donors, which take into consideration the total family planning market.
- 2012 Mid Year Region and Country Dashboards, East Africa
Mid-year East Africa region and country impact dashboards for 2012
- 2011 Region and Country Dashboards, Eastern Africa
Eastern Africa region and country impact dashboards for 2011
- PREVENTION & TREATMENT OF POST-PARTUM HEMORRHAGE IN SOMALILAND: NAVIGATING A COMPLEX COURSE TO GREATER HEALTH IMPACT
Somalia is ranked 161 out of 163 states in UNDP’s 2001 global human development index, with maternal, newborn and child mortality and morbidity rates among the highest in the world. The northwestern part of the country, known as the Republic of Somaliland, declared independence from the rest of Somalia in 1991; however, it has not yet received recognition from the international community. Although more stable than some areas of Somalia, Somaliland remains a fragile state with low capacity to offer health services.