Strategy to Guide Malaria Interventions
The Ministry of Health through the National Malaria Control Program and with support of USAID funding Launched the revised Kenya Malaria Communication Strategy since the pervious strategy had come to an end in 2014. The strategy provides a framework for the coordination of activities around advocacy, communication and social mobilization in the Malaria program in order to achieve a change in behaviour at political, service delivery, community and individual levels.
The strategy will support core strategies of the Kenya Malaria Strategy (2009-2018). The core of this document advocates for coordinated implementation of malaria intervention at national levels through the Advocacy, Communication and social mobilization (ACSM) team, and at county level through the Health Promotion Advisory Committees (HPACs). The revised strategy was launched on 24th April 2017, a day before World Malaria Day and during a global WHO led meeting to announce Kenya’s selection into the pilot countries for the malaria vaccine. This provided a shared platform where key malaria issues were discussed.
What Key Stakeholders Said
“Universal net coverage remains a key strategy of the Kenya government because bed nets contribute to reducing cases of Malaria. However, net coverage is not going to help if people do not use the nets, therefore behaviour change strategies will continue play a vital role in Malaria prevention and this is why the development of the Kenya Malaria Communication Strategy is timely because it highlights ways we can use communication to sustain malaria control in the country.”
Dr. Cleopa Mailu, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Health
“We are steadily defeating Malaria and this is possible because of the many partners we have worked with over the years. We can improve on the use of nets and how quickly people get to clinics for treatment and that requires us getting key messages out to people of Kenya. This is why the US President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) is proud to support NMCP in the development of the Kenya Malaria Communication Strategy. This communications strategy is another tool we can use track effectiveness of the various malaria interventions we have set in place.”
Karen Freeman – USAID Mission Director
Roadmap to the New Strategy
Through funding from PMI, the HCM project supported the review of the previous Malaria Communication Strategy (2010 -2014). This review was informed by two emerging issues: the mid-term review of the Kenya Malaria Strategy hence need to align the communication strategy and the change in government structure which devolved power, and health service delivery, to the county level. Some strengths of the previous strategy that needed to be strengthened included good progress in utilization of malaria control interventions, the identification of clear messages around prevention and case management, and good engagement of local media.
Key Interventions in the New Strategy
Four key strategies will be implemented in the Kenya Malaria Communication Strategy:
1. Strengthen structures for the delivery of ACSM interventions at all levels
2. Strengthen program communication for increased utilization of malaria interventions at household level (
3. Increase inter-sectoral advocacy and collaboration for malaria control
4. Strengthen community-based social and behaviour change communication activities for all malaria interventions.