On February 16th, the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MOHS), Health Education Division, officially launched the National Health Promotion Strategy of Sierra Leone, 2017-2021, a roadmap to strengthen health promotion throughout Sierra Leone. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) provided funds for the Health Communication Capacity Collaborative of Johns Hopkins University to develop this first-ever national strategy to promote healthcare for all Sierra Leone citizens.
The Ebola outbreak of 2014-15 provided insights into how to manage better community healthcare systems. A key lesson was the recognition that local health structures are best positioned to provide timely and accurate guidance. The newly released National Health Promotion Strategy provides a four-year plan that strengthens the role of local health structures, coordinates its human and financial resources and professionalizes the skills of local health providers.
Attending the Launch were representatives of the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, USAID, the World Health Organization, and other development partners integral to the initiative’s success. Dr. Saad El-Din Hassan, Health Advisor with USAID-Sierra Leone, stated “This strategy will contribute greatly to reducing mortality and the disease burden in Sierra Leone, particularly maternal and newborn mortality and morbidity”.