Timor-Leste Health Improvement Project

Dates: 2011-2015

Country: Timor-Leste

Client(s): USAID, USAID/Asia

Services: Technical Assistance, Assessment, Applied Technology, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Research, Program Development, Training, Quality Assurance and Improvement, Capacity Development

Technical Expertise: Maternal, Newborn & Child Health, Family Planning & Reproductive Health, Social and Behavior Change, Health Supply Chain Management, Health Systems Strengthening, Immunization, Research, Monitoring, and Evaluation, Nutrition, Youth & Adolescent Health/OVC

Timor-Leste is one of the newest countries in the world, having gained independence in 2002 after a long and violent struggle with Indonesia. Health outcomes are poor for women and children and malnutrition among children under five is rampant.

In recent years, Timor-Leste's Ministry of Health has made good progress in establishing its systems, defining national priorities, and providing health services. JSI assisted the revitalization of the integrated community health service (SISCa), which aimed to connect even the most rural and hard to reach communities with essential health services.

To support the Ministry of Health's vision, USAID has contracted with JSI to carry out the four-year (2011-2015) Timor-Leste Health Improvement Project (HIP). The project, which JSI implements with Burnet Institute and Menzies School of Health Research, builds upon six years of successful USAID-funded support to Timor-Leste in the areas of basic health services strengthening.

The Health Improvement Project worked in close collaboration with the MOH to:

  • Improve the integrated service delivery of primary health care, especially for reproductive, maternal, neonatal, child health, and family planning. The project accomplished this through the Ministry of Health's service delivery sites.
  • Improve reproductive, maternal, neonatal, and child health behaviors and outcomes.
  • Increase community engagement in SISCa, especially around maternal, neonatal, child health, and family planning issues.

Implemented in the districts of Oecusse, Manatuto, and Ermera, HIP is supporting primary health care providers at the district, sub-district and community levels to improve services for women of reproductive age and children.

HIP provided technical assistance to accomplish the following six core principles and components of primary health care: 1) strong leadership and government in human rights for health, 2) prioritization of cost-effective interventions, 3) establishing an interactive and integrated culture of community engagement, 4) providing an integrated continuum of care at the community level, 5) supporting skilled and equipped health workers at all levels of the health system, and 6) creating a systems cycle of feedback using data to inform health care.

The project encouraged coordination and collaboration within the health sector and ensured that USAID and World Health Organization best practices were used and promoted and that appropriate opportunities were provided within Timor-Leste to share and disseminate health information and lessons learned.

HIP's support of the Ministry of Health in the introduction of the non-pneumatic anti-shock garment (NASG) to reduce maternal death caused by postpartum hemorrhage was featured in USAID FrontLines. Read "Health Interventions Save Mothers' Lives" to learn more.

Read the blog post by Marianne Viatour on Uterine Atony, an Extremely Dangerous Complication Effectively Managed Thanks to the NASG.

HIP's introduction and scale-up of NASG in Timor-Leste was also featured in the May/June 2015 issue of USAID FrontLines. Read "Health Innovations Saves Mothers' Lives in Timor-Leste"


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