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The Problem

People traveling through or living in Eastern Africa’s cross-border areas face heightened risk for numerous illnesses, including HIV infection, TB, malaria, and other infectious diseases. These issues are compounded by high rates of maternal and child morbidity and mortality, and stunting due to food insecurity in the region. Various other shocks -- whether related to economic, conflict, environmental, or disease factors -- can push these vulnerable and underserved populations into a vicious cycle of poverty and ill health.

Cross-border and mobile populations also have difficulty in accessing health care: health facilities may be far away, facility hours are often limited, services may be unaffordable, and health providers may be biased against individuals based on their country of origin, ethnicity, or legal residency status.

What We’re Doing

LHSS will work to increase access to and use of affordable, quality health care in cross-border areas of East Africa. We will partner closely with regional intergovernmental organizations (RIGOs), national governments of nine countries (Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda), cross-border authorities, the private sector, local organizations, and health service providers.

Our efforts will focus on building the capacity of RIGOs and cross-border stakeholders; enhancing governance, partnership, and coordination; improving the digitization and interoperability of cross-border health evidence generation and use; and institutionalizing financial protection systems tailored for cross-border and mobile populations.

Specific objectives include :

  • Improved and digitized cross-border health information systems in cross-border areas
  • Increased capacity of regional organizations to standardize regional health policies and regulations that affect cross-border populations
  • Strengthened regional and national financing, resource mobilization, and accountability for cross-border health

Who This Helps

Vulnerable groups living in or crossing borders include workers in public businesses like hotels and bars; migrant workers; pastoralists; fisherfolk; female sex workers; men who have sex with men; and women, adolescents, and children.