This is NOT a April fool hoax nor a satire, but shall explain to you how one Million Community Health Workers can be produced and deployed across sub-Saharan Africa until 2015:
“We are launching a new campaign that aims to expand and accelerate community health worker programs in sub-Saharan African countries, scaling them up to district, regional, and national levels to meet the health-related Millennium Development Goals. With the use of the latest communications technology and diagnostic testing materials, these frontline workers link the rural poor to the broader healthcare system of doctors, nurses, hospitals and clinics.
The new campaign will work with governments and aid agencies to finance and train the cadre of health workers, each of whom would serve an average of 650 rural inhabitants, at an estimated cost of $6.58 per patient per year. this adds up to an estimated $2.5 billion, which includes funding already being spent by NGOs and governments on these programs. These estimates fall within projected governmental health budgetary constraints and are within the boundaries of donor assistance already pledged and anticipated.
How it works:
Point-of-care diagnosis: Biomedical technology has now produced rapid home test kits for malaria and HIV diagnosis, sputum collection for the detection of tuberculosis by genetic amplification, and pregnancy tests. These innovative instruments have enormous potential for impacting healthcare provision in the developing world, especially at the periphery of the health system and in rural areas.
Scalable supervision: Broadband access and smartphones can link community health workers to the national health system and allow for real-time disease surveillance, child and maternal health monitoring, mobile training, supply chain management and capturing of vital events.
Standardized care: Arming lay health workers with consistent supplies of life-saving medicines and easy-to-follow treatment protocols guarantees a minimum quality of services delivered to these clients. Active care and disease detection according to rigorous guidelines has greater benefit to the formal health system than the usual passive case detection and referrals to upper levels of care.
Rapid training: There is persuasive evidence that short-term intensive trainings on the most critical competencies for community healthcare delivery can be effective for deploying on-the-ground, functional frontline health workers at scale, without a large initial time lag between recruitment and deployment.”