A review of community-centred early warning early action systems
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The purpose of this evaluation was to review the effectiveness, efficiency,relevance, accuracy and sustainability of the Health Institution Capacity Assessment Process programme in Malawi.
The Health Institution Capacity Assessment Process (HICAP) was implemented as one component of the Maternal and Reproductive Health (MRH) Programme (2013-2016). The programme was designed to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality through a number of strategic objectives.
Overall, the response to the HICAP was positive from all parties. It is considered relevant and useful to the work of the Village Development Committees (VDCs), and specific examples were given of its positive impact on community health outcomes as well as its role in reinforcing more representative participation of community members and in reinforcing the Government of Malawi's decentralisation agenda.
However, some key areas for reform were identified, notably the need to support the VDCs through election cycles (VDC members are elected by their communities every 3 years, according to Government policy); and the need to enable them to secure sustainable funding to finance their plans and activities. Furthermore, the heavy reliance on extension workers to conduct the majority of capacity building and support to the VDCs is a concern, given their resource and time constraints.