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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/602

Title: Exploring Partnerships with Civil Society Organizations in Health Development: The Case of Iddirs in Addisababa
Authors: Garoma, Kena
Advisors: Damen Hailemariam (MD, MPH, PhD)
Copyright: 2007
Date Added: 19-Apr-2008
Publisher: Addis Ababa University
Abstract: ABSTRACT Background: Health being the major development input, it was given due considerations in the millennium development goals to be achieved by 2015 by developing countries including Ethiopia. The health service coverage, utilization and quality in Ethiopia are poor and have not shown significant gains over time. The sector has been dominated by the public sector with limited involvement by other actors. The government could not handle the problem alone. Cognizant of these facts, the need to diversify actors in the health sector was given priority in the health policy as well as other policy documents. The Iddir is one of civil society organizations in Ethiopia that has recently gained some attention as potential partner in development, both by the government and non governmental organizations. Objectives To explore partnership potentials between Iddirs, the government, and nongovernmental organizations in the health sector. Methods: Cross-sectional exploratory study was conducted from January to March, 2007 using both qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection. For the quantitative survey, a sample of 422 Iddir leaders were randomly selected from the Iddirs currently registered with the ten Sub Cities of Addis Ababa for interview. For the qualitative part, four focus group discussions were organized with Iddir leaders and Iddir members to explore their views on the importance and willingness of establishing partnerships between Iddirs and the government and non governmental organizations. Eleven in-depth interviews were also conducted with key informants drawn from non-governmental organizations working in partnerships with Iddirs and relevant government agencies to explore their views on the significance and possibilities of establishing partnerships with Iddirs in health development. Result: Out of the 422 Iddirs surveyed, 228 (54.0%) are currently engaged in health related activities in one way or another. The majority, 216 (51.2%), are involved in HIV/AIDS prevention, care and support activities. One hundred thirteen (26.8%) are offering some form of health care financing services to their members. Ninety-seven of them (22.9%) are also involved in environmental health activities. In the qualitative study, the need to establish partnerships with Iddirs has been emphasized by participants from governmental and non governmental organizations. Iddirs have also expressed their willingness to go in to such partnerships, although some are still suspicious in partnering with the government. Participants also expressed the need to build the capacity of Iddirs to be active development partners and improve their working environment. Conclusion: In general, a number of opportunities and entry points exist to establish partnerships with Iddirs in public health efforts. The study has found that Iddirs, which were once providing only funeral services, are coming out as development actors and partners. Moreover, they are modifying their by-laws to include issues pertaining to pressing public health problems such as HIV/AIDS. There is also increasing recognition on the role of Iddirs in development by both the government and NGOs. The public health activities the Iddirs are currently engaged in can serve as potential entry points into partnerships with them for all concerned. However, a number of important contextual factors have been identified that need to be considered in initiating partnership working arrangements with Iddirs. Such initiative must accommodate their fears, concerns and suspicions if it has to prove effective.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/602
Appears in:Thesis - Public Health

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