Over one billion people cannot use the health services that they need because they are either unavailable or unaffordable. Projections estimate a potential shortfall of 18 million health workers in low- and lower-middle-income countries if universal health coverage (UHC) is to be achieved by 2030. Health workforce deficiencies, inadequate distribution of health services, quality challenges, and performance challenges represent some of the main obstacles to the scaling up of essential health interventions. Addressing these challenges is essential for progress towards Sustainable Development Goal 3 to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages” and guaranteeing Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
Red Cross Red Crescent Care in the Communities (CIC) is an adaptable, evidence-based, and sustainable approach to the current challenges faced in health care service delivery around the world. Based on the task-shifting model through the engagement of community-based health workers (CBHWs), including trained Red Cross Red Crescent volunteers, it promotes a life-course approach that focuses on prevention and access to early diagnostics, screening, treatment, and care for delivery at the community/ home level.
Red Cross Red Crescent volunteers have a personal understanding of people’s needs and circumstances. They are well positioned to strengthen the link between vulnerable communities, community care, and the formal health system. Through our CIC programming, the IFRC leverages to leverages expertise, resources, and lessons learnt to develop essential, evidence-based community level health and care services.
IFRC WHO UNICEF Interim guidance on community-based health care in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic