In Africa, public health service delivery is often compromised by the absence of accountability and oversight at the local level, creating a situation rife for corruption. Life-saving medications go missing along the supply chain, public funds disappear, and the poor are forced to pay bribes for basic care.
We believe that the patients at public health facilities are best able to identify the maltreatment, waste and corruption they confront. Our innovative approaches put citizens first. They can work with their leaders to reduce opportunities for people in authority to abuse their power, correct service breakdowns and ensure their needs are met.
PTF supported projects have monitored the provision public health services at the local level, empowering citizens to use hard evidence found through strategic monitoring, to campaign for reforms and to constructively engage with authorities. See more at ptfund.org.
The Citizen Action Platform (CAP) a program designed to improve public services by analyzing citizen feedback submitted through UNICEF’s U-report system (ureport.in). CAP collects individual feedback on public service delivery as it is submitted to U-report, and confidentially re-distributes relevant information to community-based organizations. This information provides strong support for CSOs to constructively engage with service providers through a better understanding of where, when, and what issues citizens are most concerned about.
The program now covers 10 sub-counties in Uganda with an annual budget of approximately $65,000. An independent assessment measured the extent to which these investments translated into impact. Key findings confirm that:
- Health center staffing increased by an average of 20% as a result of project investments, benefitting approximately 20,000 poor families.
- Instances of bribe taking for birthing kits, bed nets and medications have significantly reduced, ensuring that investments in public service delivery reach the poorest and most vulnerable.
- Two-thirds of the grievances resolved through CAP were achieved with either no additional financial investment and just over 30% saved public money by eliminating leakages, reducing absenteeism and recovering mismanaged and stolen funds.
Beyond the pilot, CAP has also demonstrated great potential to advance the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by reducing corruption and improving service quality, thereby increasing their effectiveness in achieving intended results.