This morning, I arrived with President Clinton and his delegation in Maputo, Mozambique, to visit the Polana Canhico Health Facility – a facility that treats more than 200,000 clients per year. Located in a densely populated peri-urban area with high levels of poverty and communicable diseases, the Polana Canhico Health Facility has shown incredible progress in maternal and child health and HIV diagnosis and treatment through technological innovations and public-private partnerships that the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) and the Ministry of Health have implemented.
Over the past 20 years, Mozambique has grown from one of the world’s poorest countries to one of Africa’s most vibrant economies. The country’s population of over 20 million is spread across 11 provinces, with more than 60 percent living in rural areas. Though providing quality healthcare services remains a challenge, significant progress has been made over the past decade, as evidenced by CHAI health facilities such as the one we visited.
In 2005, of the 1.4 million people in Mozambique living with HIV/AIDS, only 3,000 people were on treatment. By the end of 2011, more than 272,000, including 23,049 children, were receiving HIV/AIDS treatment, and more than 600,000 patients were receiving care. With support from CHAI, Mozambique will continue to increase the number of people on treatment to meet 80% of health care needs by 2015.
CHAI in Mozambique is also working to develop innovative solutions to radically improve the health systems and capacity of the Mozambique government. A truly groundbreaking innovation that we saw today at the Polana Canhico Health Facility are the new point-of-care HIV testing devices, which give patients a DNA PCR/Viral LoadTest within one hour, resulting in the earliest initiation possible for pediatrics and improving child survival rates. As little as two years ago, results were taking an average of more than six months to get to patients – critical time in a life of an infant that needs treatment.
The Clinton Foundation, the government of Mozambique, and Coca-Cola also are testing a pioneering new effort that utilized Coke's private sector distribution network to deliver medical supplies to otherwise hard-to-reach areas.
The Clinton Foundation demonstrates that public-private partnerships and strategic engagement of private citizens, community members, and local governments can achieve great results in health care. And as I saw firsthand today in Mozambique, this work is innovative in its scope and in its purpose – which is to ensure governments can own and maintain their own health care systems without further reliance on aid. I applaud the Clinton Foundation for bringing together groups and individuals from all sides of the political spectrum to build a world that’s more equal, more sustainable, and that benefits us all.