Abuja, Nigeria (March 2023) – The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) has awarded Technical Advice Connect (TAConnect) a $29 million grant to strengthen primary healthcare systems, enhance service delivery, and increase uptake of high impact interventions for reproductive, maternal, new-born, child, and adolescent health plus nutrition (RMNCAH+N) in Nigeria.
This investment will complement and layer on previous and ongoing investments that straddle PHC systems strengthening and RMNCAH+N services across Kaduna, Kano, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Sokoto, Yobe Bauchi, Borno and Gombe states to holistically address PHC system strengthening efforts as a strong pivot to improve operational efficiencies of facilities and improve uptake and quality of reproductive maternal newborn and child plus nutrition services.
This grant will fund many cutting-edge interventions created to help these states reduce gaps in the uptake of high-impact interventions along the continuum of pregnancy, delivery, newborn, and postnatal care by supporting the scale up and adoption of Group-ANC as an alternate service delivery model, improving Primary Health Care (PHC) service delivery, as well as strengthening PHC management capacity through improved cohesion, effectiveness, better coordination, and tracking of technical assistance. The overarching goal of this grant is to strengthen PHC systems and improve service delivery and uptake of RMNCAH+N high impact interventions through a tailored and coordinated TA hub. To achieve this overall goal, we plan to support states to:
a. Improve uptake of RMNCAH+N high impact interventions along the continuum of care compared to the baseline.
b. Improve quality of care of RMNCAH+N services along the continuum of care compared to the baseline.
c. Improve management skills of PHC facility managers and the operational effectiveness of PHCs.
d. Enhance data use for decision-making and to generate demand for services.
e. Enhance health outcomes of mothers and newborns through the adoption of a gender lens to address gender barriers and inequalities; and
f. Increase uptake of high-impact interventions at the community level to address the high percentage of home births and zero-dose children.
Building on the successes and lessons from our previous investment, TAConnect will continue to support states to improve operational efficiencies of PHC facilities through focus on PHC management capacity strengthening for officers in charge and other archetypes of PHC systems strengthening such as M&E systems strengthening and supply chain. Our experience has shown that this strategic system strengthening initiative is a potential game changer for the PHC system strengthening as it addresses critical gaps focused on 3 distinct cross-cutting themes of state engagement, systems development, and capacity building.
TAConnect will also continue to scale up and layer RMNCAH+N High Impact Interventions on G-ANC/PNC model across the 10 priority states building on the promising results from the first wave of states which have shown increased retention in care, facility delivery and skilled birth attendants across facilities implementing GANC. Based on these promising results, this grant will layer on the G-ANC/PNC model to roll out contextualized state specific HII across the continuum of care with aim to increasing uptake of key ancillary services such as FP, PPFP, IPT uptake, newborn care, immunization with focus on maternal immunization and newborn care birth dose (polio, HepB and BCG and maternal infant and young child feeding.
“This is the second time we’ve received funds from the foundation to support the improvement of PHC systems in Nigeria which is very crucial to our fundamental mission of assisting national and sub-national governments in building and strengthening resilient health systems and improving health outcomes” said Lillian Anomnachi, Executive Director of Technical Advice Connect. “With this funding, we will continue to work with our various stakeholders to co-create scalable solutions that work and intentionally layer on our existing interventions to firm up systems and processes that will significantly improve health outcomes, especially for vulnerable populations such as women and children.”
TAConnect will continue to facilitate state ownership, sustainability, and implementation at scale. This will hinge on our guiding principles of government ownership, leveraging existing structures, enshrining flexibility and adaptability, operating with prudence and efficiency, fostering collaboration, and ensuring gender and social inclusion.
Technical Advice Connect (TAConnect) is an innovative technical assistance (TA) delivery platform, set up to respond to TA priorities to promote sustainable improvements in state primary healthcare (PHC) systems’ performance and increase the uptake of reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health and nutrition (RMNCAH+N) services. TA Connect works with states and funders to define issues, identify solutions, and the skills and expertise required to help strengthen the effectiveness, efficiency, and quality of services while managing the selection and deployment of technical assistance and providing technical and programmatic oversight to ensure efficiency, effectiveness, and value for money.
Media Contact: Communications@taconnect-ng.org