Greater Mekong Subregion Elimination of Malaria through Surveillance
The GEMS program ensured that private health care providers provided quality malaria testing and treatment services, and that data from the private sector entered the national surveillance system to inform decision making in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam. With a significant proportion of the population in the Greater Mekong Subregion seeking treatment for fevers from private providers, engaging this sector is considered critical to achieving malaria elimination. Phase II, or GEMS+, aimed to sustainably integrate private data into national surveillance systems and transition private sector engagement from NGO to government oversight and support.
where we work
The GEMS+ program provides a comprehensive package of support to private providers within its network. Successful integration of the private sector into national malaria programs requires the development of national policies and strategies, allocation of resources by the government dedicated to the private sector program, and sustained engagement of transitioned providers. With private sector engagement in place, PSI supports national malaria programs to oversee and utilize the malaria testing and treatment services offered by the private sector as complementary to public facilities and community providers. Over time, PSI is gradually reducing direct support to providers as national malaria programs increasingly assume ownership and oversight.
From 2016 – 2022, GEMS and GEMS+ achieved the following
Malaria tests conducted
Malaria cases detected, treated, and reported
Private providers and private sector outlets transitioned
Discover What is Happening with Private
Sector Engagement and Disease Surveillance
Frequently Asked Questions
In Southeast Asia, between 40-78% of the population first seek health care in the private sector, meaning that private providers potentially see most of the malaria cases in the region. It is therefore critical that private sector outlets are able to test for malaria, and are stocked with the right drugs in order to provide correct treatment.
PSI works with the private providers that at-risk communities trust most. This includes doctors working at registered private clinics and pharmacies, as well as community health volunteers and non-formal outlets that can be a significant source of drugs and advice in some areas. GEMS+ supports national malaria programs to use local evidence (including case data from the public and private sector, national stratification, supervision, and quality assessment scores) to identify a manageable number of high-performing providers in high burden areas who make a measurable contribution to the national caseload.
Malaria elimination will fail without surveillance, and surveillance is incomplete without including data from the private sector. Without it, the government is not seeing the full picture.
PSI uses DHIS2, which is an open-source software allowing for greater access to data, and tools to help visualize data and automatically generate indicator calculations and reports. More information on DHIS2 can be found here.