The World Health Organization estimates there is a shortage of about 4.3 million health care workers globally. Africa has only about 10% of the worldâ€™s population and is affected by about 24% of the global disease burden but has only 3% of the global health workforce. Sub-Saharan Africa is deficient the 1.5 million workers that would be necessary to provide adequate health care. In addition, countries with better developed primary health care systems have been found to have better health statistics. We have a significant challenge before us, to build a healthier world. Peace Care is a nonprofit organization that works toward this goal by positively impacting global health disparities by specifically addressing the global burden of disease, the global shortage of health care workers, the deficiency of primary care in low-income countries, and the deficiency of global health research while improving the role of the United States in global health.
Peace Care, in essence, is a collaboration between the U.S. Peace Corps or other development agencies, U.S. health care training institutions, U.S. schools of public health, and global communities to improve the health of these global communities. Through this collaboration, Peace Care utilizes the well respected institution of the Peace Corps (as well as other development agencies) and its volunteers currently living and working alongside community health leaders throughout the world. Peace Care could, as well, become a significant asset in the attainment of the first goal of Peace Corps, "Helping the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women." Peace Care, therefore, connects Peace Corps volunteers to U.S. health experts and educational institutions with the primary goal of training health care workers in these global communities and, in turn, building sustainable capacity to address local health care needs.
Peace Care, which utilizes the Global Community Health Collaborative (GCHC) model, operates with the premise that in order to sustainably address global health and adequately reduce disparity, solutions should originate and be developed, primarily, with community involvement, through (or with the amelioration of) existing health systems, and with the use of appropriate technology. All solutions should, as well, prioritize capacity building within the local health care structure through the utilization and implementation of the principles of primary health care and public health. In this context, the GCHC model is based on a Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR) framework establishing an equitable partnership between the community and researchers. Each project is evaluated in terms of process and outcomes, thus, fostering evidence-based replicability. There are multiple phases of this model including partnership formation, assessment, project development, project implementation, project evaluation, and dissemination. Within each phase, the community is empowered to ensure full participation and emphasis on priorities as perceived within the community.
Peace Care leverages the training resources and scientific approach of an academic center to support clinical service capacities through skills transference to develop the local health care workforce; emphasize quality of care; and improve clinical and population health outcomes as part of a service delivery enhancement. The GCHC model is novel in that it empowers low and middle income country communities in collaborations with academic institutions by partnering with the development agencies in place, including the Peace Corps, having over 7600 volunteers worldwide in 75+ countries. By leveraging the established trust, infrastructure, and resources of the Peace Corps, Peace Care is well positioned to have an immediate and sustainable impact. Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs), being integrated within the community and trained extensively in cultural competency and local language, are highly qualified field workers. These PCVs work in a highly sustainable manner by consistently collaborating with a local counterpart. The role of Peace Corps, in being a governmental organization, strengthens this model, as all initial project plans and final outcomes have been and will be reported directly to the Ministry of Health. Peace Care, a nonprofit organization, acts as the project manager as well as provides expert consultation services for this collaborative relationship.
What new functionality we are looking for
Peace Care relies heavily on IT for our model of collaboration. Traditional channels of distribution will be less necessary for the services of Peace Care to be transferred as information technology and a developed online platform for reliable and efficient communication will be the cornerstone of project development, tracking, and follow-up. This platform functionality will include online guides and instructional manuals, wiki capability for collaboration on documents, spreadsheets, reports, and presentations, research tools, evaluation tools, communications resources (texting, messaging, email, VOIP ability), project management tools, and blogging, advocacy, and fundraising capabilities. In addition, the web functionality would include access to, ability to input, and ability to query multiple relational databases that would contain project information, project successes, resource lists (personnel, equipment, and methodology), community needs and resources, institutional needs and resources, and affiliate organizations. This functionality will empower the local community, encourage a standardized approach and assure sustainability. Minimal bandwidth will be required to utilize these resources. Even in remote locations, internet access is becoming more and more feasible.
We are currently using Google Apps and have just begun to integrate Zoho creator as a cloud based database solution. We are also weakly using Batchbook CRM.
Our significant immediate need is a more impressive public website. We have the information on the site but it is not impressive so as to attract significant funders through trust and credibility.
How the new functionality will help
Our organization has an enormous amount of potential. We are very young and using free services as the cornerstone of our outreach. This allows us to get our information out there, but does not offer a comfortable level of credibility so as to foster trust in those who we are trying to attract and reach.
The potential impact of our model is significant. We will be able to scale quickly once we are firmly established and should within a matter of just a few years be working with multiple universities in multiple countries.
Thus, a solid public website is our greatest current need. We can collaborate through the Google Apps structure that we are utilizing, but our Public Appearance is in need of assistance.
FYI: We are receiving ProBono assistance for Logo creation and Identity development through 50,000 Ft. We have, as well, just been offered ProBono work through Xenos Media Group who will be helping us with Social Networking Outreach. In this regard, the opportunity of the development of a more functional and appealing public website would be timely and much appreciated.
Many thanks for your thoughtful consideration.
How our organization will use the technology
Who will use the technology