PSI/Laos has been working since 1999 in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) to:
- Reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and malaria.
- Find new cases of tuberculosis (TB).
- Prevent unintended pregnancies
- Reduce undernutrition.
- Improve overall reproductive health and sanitation among Lao people.
From 2013 to 2016, PSI’s programs in Lao PDR resulted in approximately 51,927 disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) averted.
In other words, through the prevention of HIV/AIDS, STIs, TB, undernutrition, poor sanitation, and unintended pregnancies, PSI’s efforts in Laos resulted in 51,927 years of life not lost to death or disability.
From 2013 to 2016, PSI/Laos has contributed to healthier lives in Laos by:
- Distributing over 14 million Number One branded condoms
- Finding 839 new TB cases
- Providing 4,114 people with HIV counseling and testing, and identifying 46 HIV+ cases
- Inserting 30,106 intrauterine devices (IUDs)
- Distributing 33,826 oral contraceptives
- Administering 24,240 contraceptive injections
- Distributing more than 410,000 sachets of micronutrient powder
- Installing 1,576 latrines
Women’s Health Project
In collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MoH), PSI/Laos launched the Women’s Health Project in 2011 to increase access to IUDs and other family planning methods. In 2012, one in four women in Laos had never heard of IUDs, and more than half had never heard of the contraceptive implant (LSIS 2012). PSI/Laos sought change and now works closely with the Ministry of Health, the Maternal and Child Health Center, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and provincial health departments in 10 provinces to strengthen the capacity of public sector providers to offer high-quality family planning services.
PSI/Laos improves knowledge of and access to contraceptive methods and empower women to make reproductive health decisions. In 2016 alone, PSI/Laos provided a contraceptive method to over 36,000 women, including more than 16,000 long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC) methods. PSI/Laos supports the Lao government to carry out training in family planning in the public sector, including clinical training in IUD and contraceptive implant insertion, while advocating for increased access to comprehensive family planning for women through the private sector. PSI/Laos is preparing for roll-out of this private sector partnership in 2017.
In partnership with the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) Government’s Centre for Malaria, Parasitology and Entomology (CMPE), PSI/Laos is working to engage the private sector in support of eliminating malaria in Lao PDR and the Greater Mekong Subregion. PSI/Laos is recruiting private sector outlets such as pharmacies and clinics to join the Public-Private Mix program and provide malaria case management training. PSI/Laos hopes to establish a network of approximately 450 private sector outlets capable of providing high-quality malaria detection and treatment services by the end of 2017. To ensure the necessary anti-malarials and malaria detection tests are available, PSI/Laos is working to strengthen the existing supply chain at the district and village levels.
PSI/Laos also developed comprehensive mobile technology solutions for providers and implemented District Health Information Systems 2 (DHIS2), to increase reporting of suspected and confirmed malaria cases into national information systems. These tools are improving data management enabling results to more easily be shared with government partners to inform future malaria elimination strategies.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the National Tuberculosis Center, PSI/Laos supports the Lao government’s goal of detecting more TB cases. By engaging the private sector, TB directly observed treatment short-course (DOTS) is now offered in private sector clinics. PSI/Laos also mobilizes pharmacists to refer clients with key TB symptoms to Sun Quality Health clinics for TB screening.
HIV and STIs
In support of the National HIV/AIDS Program, PSI/Laos provides a comprehensive package of products and services to female sex workers. This includes behavior change communication activities focused on HIV/STI awareness; correct and consistent condom use; one-on-one peer outreach sessions for female sex workers; and HIV testing and STI treatment at PSI drop-in centers. In addition to training peer outreach workers to provide HIV/STI prevention services and products, PSI/Laos established drop-in centers to provide a safe place for men who have sex with men (MSM) to access sexual health services and reduce the spread of HIV and other STIs.
PSI/Laos is working in partnership with the World Food Program to promote the Mother and Child Health and Nutrition program in Lao villages. The program enhances knowledge and awareness of nutrition among child caregivers through social behavior change communication. In addition, PSI/Laos has worked in partnership with the Ministry of Health and UNICEF to address micronutrient deficiencies among children six months to five years in Vientiane Capital, Saravan Province and Savannakhet Province. PSI/Laos created a unique brand of micronutrient powder called Superkid to address micronutrient deficiencies among children and increase consumer awareness of childhood undernutrition.
With support from the Water and Sanitation Program (WSP) of the World Bank, PSI/Laos partnered with iDE to implement a sanitation marketing project in the target areas of Sekong and Champasak provinces. As part of WSP’s rural sanitation program, the project built the capacity of private enterprises to respond to consumer needs for latrines as well as an overarching marketing campaign to strengthen supply chains for sanitation products.
- The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria
- United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
- United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
- World Bank
- World Food Program
- Ministry of Health
- Lao Women Union
- Lao Youth Union
- Center for HIV/AIDS/STI (CHAS)
- Centre of Malariology, Parasitology & Entomology (CMPE)
- National Tuberculosis Centre
- Health Poverty Action
- Lao Red Cross
- Lao PHA
- PLAN international
- Care International
- World Health Organization (WHO)
- Population Education Development Association (PEDA)
- Health Poverty Action (HPA)
- World Vision
- Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)
- United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
- Malaria Elimination: Who is Really at Risk?
This document presents an alternative approach to thinking and talking about malaria risk factors affecting mobile and migrant populations in the Greater Mekong Subregion, and how this can be translated into strategy and action.
- The GEMS Program: Greater Mekong Subregion Elimination of Malaria through Surveillance
In 2016, PSI launched GMS Elimination of Malaria through Surveillance (GEMS) in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam to strengthen case management and surveillance in the private sector to accelerate malaria elimination. This project brief describes each component of GEMS project in detail.
- 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.
- Making Data Work for Malaria Elimination: Surveillance in the Private Sector
This two-page brief describes the importance and usefulness of the Malaria Case Surveillance App and provides a case study of how it has been used in Cambodia.
- The Public Private Mix Program and Antimalarial and Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Test Availability and Market Share in the Southern Lao PDR Private Sector
Access to first-line ACT and mRDT was higher in PPM district antimalarial stocking private sector outlets compared with non-PPM outlets. However, CQ availability and distribution was high in both PPM and non-PPM districts. Expansion of the PPM program could increase availability of mRDT and ACT, as well as improve provider treatment and dosing knowledge, all of which are paramount in the context of national malaria elimination goals in Lao PDR. However, interventions aimed at provider preference and consumer demand may also be necessary to reduce CQ availability and market share in the private sector.
- Applying a Total Market Lens: Increased IUD Service Delivery Through Complementary Public- and Private-Sector Interventions in Four Countries
In 2013, PSI started a pilot in four countries (Guatemala, Laos, Mali, and Uganda) to grow public-provider IUD service delivery through increased public-sector engagement while maintaining its ongoing focus on private providers. Preliminary results suggest that there is untapped demand for IUD service delivery in the public sector that can be met in part through greater participation of the public sector in family planning and IUD provision.
- Applying a Total Market Lens: Increasing IUD Service Delivery in Five PSI Countries
PSI piloted a public sector engagement strategy alongside existing private sector approaches in four countries with low IUD use and found that untapped demand can be met, in part, through greater participation of the public sector.
- Determinants of Self-Reported IUD Use Among Women of Reproductive Age in Laos
Under the 2013-2015 Women’s Health Project (WHP), PSI/Laos works to ensure that all Lao women have access to affordable family planning services and are equipped with the information they need to make informed contraceptive choices. PSI/Laos provides intensive technical assistance to build the capacity of public sector providers to enable them to offer voluntary IUD insertion services, while also using Interpersonal Communication (IPC) agents to generate informed demand for family planning methods through village-level outreach. Through the WHP, PSI/Laos aims to raise the percentage of WRA using IUDs from 1.6% in 2011 to 4.0% by the end of 2015.
- Improving Provider Behavior Change Communication and IPC: Best Practices from the Women’s Health Project
This brief describes the challenges faced, strategies developed, and lessons learned by the Women's Health Project. It also proposes a set of best practices for improving productivity of interpersonal communications (IPC) agents and increasing providers' skills and motivation.
- TB Case Detection via Private Pharmacies in Lao PDR
In Laos, we use a tailored incentive scheme to increase case detection among pharmacists in the private sector.