Using Participatory Quality Improvement Methods to Improve Vaccine Timeliness
Tara Hopkins of Mali Health in the U.S. will develop methods to improve vaccination coverage in rural communities in southern Mali by engaging community health workers together with traditional birth attendants who are present during home births. In southern Mali, particularly in rural communities, most children are born at home, so they are not registered with a health clinic or present for critical childhood vaccinations. Local health services have limited funds and resources to manage the health records of all the babies born in their communities, or to follow-up with families regarding the necessary vaccinations. This translates to low vaccine coverage of around 9% in some regions, and increased incidences of deadly infectious diseases. They will pilot the project in three rural health districts and create a quality improvement team in each, consisting of a coach, local health workers, birth attendants, and mothers. The teams will be given tools to engage in a group effort to identify the barriers to timely vaccinations, and generate solutions to test.