Eritrea: Mid Term Review of the Health Sector Strategic Development Plan II (2017 - 2021) Stakeholders' Workshop

Asmara 3 Dec 2019: - Mid-term review of the health sector strategic plan stakeholders' workshop started today at Hotel Asmara Palace from 3 to 5 December 2019.

The workshop was officially opened by Honorable minister of health, Mrs Amina Nurhussein. She highlighted the fact that, given the Eritrea context the HSSDP II was developed to address many challenges and to take the health sector to a higher level of efficiency and quality that yield results and impact for our communities. In addition, she said the board focus of the SDGs offers an opening to reset and refocus health strategies and programming to strengthen health systems, which has been incorporated in the HSSDP II.

Honorable minister continued to reiterate that MOH has been working to implement the HSSDP II by converting these interventions to annual operational plans at lower level. Annual reports and joint evaluation of the whole sector, ranging from headquarters to health facility, have been strictly followed to ensure accountability, transparency and progress monitoring, she added.

On behalf of the DG and RD, Dr Martins Ovberedjo, WHO Representative to Eritrea congratulated Honorable Minister of Health of the State of Eritrea for the remarkable achievements in the health sector. He added that the mid term review is very important to WHO, participating in the spirit of partnership between all sector stakeholders, taking an evidence based comprehensive view of the health sector as part of the national development nexus with a view to supporting achievement of national development and sector priorities including UHC and SDGs.

Dr Martins highlighted the established linkages, alignment and harmonization of the sector policies, strategies, programming, projects how well they are coordinated towards addressing the HSSDP II priorities and the UHC and SDG goals and targets.

He continued underlining that the progressive and well documented achievements accomplished in the health sector; demonstrated determination of the government and the leadership of the ministry of health to consolidate and improve the scope, coverage and quality of health services across the country, including political commitment to improve health services to hard to reach areas including our nomadic community. "WHO remain committed to continue to support implementation of strategic sector priorities and recommendations of the MTR review.

Participants were drawn from MOH, line ministries, UN Agencies, development partner.

The Ministry of Health reiterated the following issues:

The sector plan was developed at the right transition time from MDGS to SDGs

The sector plan is aligned to the Africa Action Framework

The sector plan underpins the two strategies for achieving SDGs which are UHC and health security

The development of the plan has taken into consideration both the achievements and challenges

The document has 11 goals to be met

There are set of recommendations to be taken into account for successful implementation

The sector plan is feasible and doable as far as there is the will and political support

The MTR process is facilitated by experts from WHO/AFRO led by, Dr Humphrey Karamagi, the SDG coordinator working with Dr. Hillary Kipruto, in charge of Health Information and Knowledge management at the IST/East and South Africa. Dr. Karamagi reiterated the important need to align the HSSDP 2 with the need to move towards UHC and SDGs in Ertirea. He led a discussion on the country status with regard to UHC and SDG 3 attainment, highlighting the critical focus on improving service capacity and access to services to move forward the SDG agenda in Eritrea.

All the country Zobas (equivalent of districts) together with the management teams at the Ministry of Health are presenting progress they have attained so far against the HSSDP 2. This will inform the analysis of progress by the review team and its implications towards attainment of UHC and SDG 3.

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