Communities and patients are the core of the local health system, so our approach to quality improvement puts them at the heart of the process.
Improving access to basic healthcare is a good first step, but it is not enough. Ensuring the high quality of maternal and child healthcare, especially at the local level where most families seek and receive care, is just as important.
To support partners in improving the quality of health services, we adapt traditional quality improvement methods based on the Kaizen approach for use by local teams based at community health centers.
Our approach is unique because users and providers work together to address quality issues. Women play an important role in the change teams and by joining and leading the health center management associations – so their voices are truly heard. We call our approach participatory quality improvement.
Using data and feedback collected from patients (usually mothers) and internal health center sources, change teams make improvements based on needs and evidence, while measuring the impact of the changes continuously.
Due to the structure of Mali’s community health system, improving quality also means improving governance, accountability, and transparency. We also help raise sanitation and infrastructure standards in health centers when possible.
We help quality improvement teams address challenges in four core areas:
Health center management and governance
“One of our greatest accomplishments has been the increase in the number of women who complete all four prenatal consultations. In the very first consultation, we talk to mothers about why it’s important to come for all four visits. It helps them prepare psychologically for their pregnancy and eventual delivery. Through the QI program, this information has become an important part of our medical personnel’s training to ensure the best quality service for our patients.”
— Chief Midwife at CSCom Boulkassoumbougou
partner health centers across Mali
serving populations of over
staff and ASACO members trained
PDSA cycles in 2018
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