Since the end of the post-election crisis of 2010, Côte d’Ivoire has known a period of relative stability. However, the crisis has had heavy consequences on the health system that can still be felt. Adams is a coffee plantation owner and lives in the west to waste a region that was hit hard by the crisis. He came back after fleeing his village only to recover half of his fields. Today Adams earns five times less than before the crisis and cannot provide for the health care
of his family any longer. The population is generally poor, and we were disorganized during the crisis. Thank God, since the end of the hostilities, the population has resumed its activities. We are in the village. We have returned to the field, and we are working the land to have resources. To help Ivorians like Adam and his family, the Government of Côte d’Ivoire stepped up to ease access to healthcare. In the end of 2012, they decided to allow pregnant women and children under 5 to benefit from free healthcare, but in this fight for the recovery of the health system, Côte d’Ivoire is not alone. We received support to strengthen our
capacity to treat mothers and children. We received equipment and supplies, and
also, several health facilities were rehabilitated. The support from our partners was extremely beneficial to us. The ECHO project, financed by the European Commission and implemented by UNICEF and four partner NGOs, aims at supplying
essential medication to the health districts that were hit the most by the crisis. UNICEF will be shipping 1,200 tonnes of medication worth 6.5 million Euros. This project has allowed the Government of Côte d’Ivoire and its partners to take the time to restore the supply
chain for essential drugs without impacting too much on the health facilities. More importantly, it is truly a partnership between the Government, UNICEF, the European Commission and NGOs. So far, the project has allowed the supplying of around 250 health centers and 18 hospitals. More than 1 million women and children under five will receive free healthcare. It’s important to keep in mind that this is a pilot project. We are experimenting at an operational level with the implementation of a free target health care policy. One question that remains is the funding and to which extent the Government will be able to support the cost of such a policy. Another question is how we will be able to transfer the project to the Government since neither ECHO nor UNICEF nor the
NGOs are designed to stay for very long. The final ambition of this project is to help the Government rebuild the healthcare system and help reduce child and maternal mortality. this is For more information, go to unicef.org.