Jinja, 29 August 2016 - The Ministry of Health (MoH) and partners with support from World Health Organization (WHO), convened a four-day orientation retreat for new and old staff of the Uganda National Malaria Control Program. The new staff were recruited through WHO and UNICEF with support from (DFID), Global Fund against Malaria, HIV and TB, Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) and Presidential Malaria Initiative (PMI).
In his closing remarks, the WHO Country Representative in Uganda Dr. Wondimagegnehu Alemu congratulated the participants on a successful retreat. He also called on the NMCP to work closely with districts in the planning and implementation stages of the Malaria Reduction Strategic Plan (MRSP). Dr. Alemu further advised the NMCP and partners to look into the critical areas of coordination and resource mobilization, pointing out that they are important components of the MSRP. He reaffirmed WHO’s global and local support as well as that of the United Nations in Uganda.
At the beginning of the retreat, participants were orientated on the WHO global and local frameworks on Malaria elimination. These were presented by Dr Juliet Bataringaya and Dr Charles Katureebe, both from the WHO country office in Uganda. Participants were also given an analysis of the past and current Uganda Malaria Reduction Strategies in order for them to have a deeper understanding of what is expected of the program. Challenges faced by NMCP and solutions were also tabled and a follow up meeting scheduled to concretize issues discussed in the retreat.
The participants also agreed on the action points that require the attention of NMCP together with its partners. They further agreed to hold regular weekly staff and management meetings as part of program strengthening. The need for authorized and well-coordinated staff movement especially to the field was emphasized and staff further advised to submit field reports on return. The NMCP staff and partners also agreed to make the retreat an annual event and WHO pledged to support it.
On working with partners, the NMCP was tasked to mobilize more partners who are doing work on malaria in the country. This was identified as an important way to avoid duplication of work and better coordination of interventions.
Purposeful support supervision with appropriate skills and information was also emphasized not to lose program gains.
WHO in Uganda provides technical guidance to MoH to roll out malaria control interventions according to standard technical guidelines including the current Malaria Reduction Strategic Plan. Additionally, WHO recommends partnerships and effective coordination to strengthen malaria interventions.
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