April 2007 GAVI, TGF, HMN, PMNCH joint visit
In April 2007, representatives of The Partnership, GAVI, The Global Fund for AIDS, TB & Malaria (GFATM), and the Health Metrics Network (HMN) made a joint visit to Ethiopia. The meeting participants having all noted a frequent overlap between partner and government department activities, the visit was organized with the main purpose of discussing with government ways to increase the harmonization of the coordination processes so as to minimize duplication. The most notable output of this meeting was the engagement of the Minister of Health to have his ministry assess all existing coordination mechanisms and work towards their simplification and harmonization.
May 2007 in-country PMNCH partners meeting
In May 2007 the co-chair of the Country Support Working Group participated in a Ministry of Health led, meeting of the in country PMNCH partners in Ethiopia. The approximately 30 participants included Members of the Family Health Department of the Ministry of Health and Reproductive Health (RH) task force members: UNFPA, UNICEF, several donors, professional associations, and a number of NGOs that play important roles in family planning and reproductive health in Ethiopia.
The child survival task force which had convened a few weeks earlier did not attend the meeting. The Child and reproductive Health task forces which had held a collaborative meeting one year prior to these meetings had since then not met as a group. The joint meeting, not having allowed either task force to delve into its technical issues and address its programs was viewed as too superficial. It was therefore decided that each task force should meet on a monthly basis and that a joint meeting could be conducted quarterly. While they have been inactive since the joint RH-CS meeting, there has reportedly been continued and active consultation and coordination among government and partners through the “Joint Central Coordinating Committee” (JCCC).
The in country PMNCH partner meeting focused on the identification of ways to reinvigorate coordination and communication within the country’s reproductive health community, and how best to extend that coordination from the central level out to the more operational regional and even woreda levels. To date the RH task force has divided into small focused technical subgroups. It as well as the CS task force has served primarily as technical resource groups. The participants, during the meeting decided to activate a small “defragmentation” group to seek ways to reduce the multiplicity of RH subgroups.