Community Health

Community Health System

As the complex needs of people facing the double burden of health issues and socio-economic difficulties are increasingly identified and addressed, the importance of community-level health and social services is magnified. Improvement methods can be applied at the community level to address the quality and coverage of health and social welfare services, strengthen linkages between the community and the health system, and enhance the capacity of existing groups and networks to affect health issues in their own communities. 

A particular area of focus for improvement in community health is to strengthen the effectiveness and sustainability of programs that rely on community health workers (CHWs). Due to large catchment areas and numbers of households they are expected to cover, CHWs are frequently inadequate to provide services to all households needing them.  Although CHWs are usually linked to facilities, facility health care teams often do not have the time or capacity to address the challenges facing CHWs. Leveraging existing networks and indigenous structures to work together to improve the health of community members can improve CHWs’ acceptance, morale, and performance.

Celebrating Accomplishments in the Care and Support Zika-Affected Children and Families

Celebrating Accomplishments in the Care and Support Zika-Affected Children and Families The ASSIST Project coordinated the USAID Care and Support for Infants, Mothers, and Families affected by Zika conference in Panama City from April 24th...

Prevent, Find, Link and Retain: The Essential Role of OVC Programming

Catholic Relief Services & the Orphans & Vulnerable Children (OVC) Task Force 2019 OVC Conference:

Two to Tango: How Men’s Health-Seeking Behaviors May Influence the Spread of Zika in the Caribbean

Morgan Mickle


On February 1, 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Zika virus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) (I) after information surfaced that linked Zika virus infections with clusters of microcephaly and other neurological complications. While not new (1), the virus began to rapidly spread across the Americas after first being recorded in 2015. By February 4, 2016, 26 countries reported Zika virus infections (II).

Adolescentes embarazadas y las barreras que enfrentan para prevenir el zika

Elga Salvador

WI-HER/ Senior Gender Advisor

Por: Elga Salvador

El Hospital Universitario Maternidad Nuestra Señora de la Altagracia (HUMNSA) fue escenario del primer nacimiento del 2019 en la República Dominicana; el mismo día el mismo hospital cuenta con otros récords: registra el primer niño a nacer en el año por el sexto año consecutivo y cuenta la tercera adolescente como madre del primer bebé a nacer [1,2]. Esto tal vez ya no cause asombro en un país donde desde el 1996 nunca se ha registrado un porcentaje de embarazo en la adolescencia inferior al 20% [3].

Adolescent Pregnancy and Barriers to Zika Prevention

Elga Salvador

WI-HER/ Senior Gender Advisor

By: Elga Salvador

The maternity hospital, Nuestra Señora de la Altagracia, holds the record of the first birth of 2019 in the Dominican Republic for the sixth consecutive year. On the same day, the same hospital also holds another record: this is the third year in which the first baby was born to an adolescent mother [1,2]. This is no longer a surprise in a country where the percentage of pregnancy in adolescents has never been lower than 20% in the last 23 years [3].