There are many factors that have an impact on access to health care and the quality of service provision. This list is by no means exhaustive and there will be many other challenges not captured.

  • Lack of food security

    Food insecurity is primarily caused by crop failure, closure of the borders due to outbreaks and financial constraints.
    This leads to increased malnutrition rates and other illnesses. It also leads to an over dependence on the food rations malnourished children are given.
    Some people feed it to the whole family not just the child needing rehabilitation, meaning it is less effective.

  • Lack of basic water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)

    This leads to preventable conditions such as diarrhea, cholera, dysentery, typhoid and polio.

  • Low literacy levels

    Lower levels of educational attainment of community members and also CHWs mean individuals and households are more likely to be unaware of health risks and what to look out for including when to go to a health facility.

  • Challenges within health services

    For example, health posts often lack adequate equipment and infrastructure such as taking blood counts, mother shelters or even running water and power.
    They also have a lack of well-trained health care staff and struggle with retaining them. Facilities lacking medication meaning people have to buy it.

  • Remoteness and lack of transport in rural areas

    This makes it difficult for people to access health care facilities and educational opportunities.

  • Poor communication and access to rural communities

    Poor access both physically (roads) and virtually (signal/network) for health care assistance to reach rural areas. The access challenges are even greater in the rainy season.

  • Gender inequality

    This leads to issues with teenage pregnancies due to early or child marriage, lack of education around family planning, and socio-cultural expectations/norms.
    Also gender based violence.

  • Ecosystem changes linked to climate change

    More of an issue in rural areas where many people are subsistence farmers. No rain means no crops which is what their livelihoods are based around.
    This means they lack money and means to access health facilities. It also may lead to greater deforestation to sell timber/coal which in turn increases the risk of disease and health related challenges.

  • Traditional beliefs

    A belief in alternative medicines and practices, particularly in rural areas, leading to misconceptions around health and people not wanting to go to health posts.