Rural Support Programmes Network (RSPN), Pakistan

JHU.CCP-RSPN: Health Communication Component of USAID’s Maternal and Child Health Program

In Pakistan, the poor and vulnerable bear the burden of disease and benefit the least from public health care services, which are either unavailable in their areas or difficult to access. Problems in accessing healthcare services, coupled with a lack of knowledge and restrictive cultural practices means that maternal and child health is a little considered issue in rural Pakistan, where giving birth is thought of as a normal part of life which does not require special medical attention. This problem is particularly prevalent in the Sindh province of Pakistan, which after Balochistan, has the poorest health outcomes for mothers and children. Studies across the world reveal that the vulnerable populations absorb health information well if it is relevant, localized, and integrated well with current cultural and social situations. Research also reveals that health communication is neither delivered nor received in a vacuum. Thus, RSPN has partnered with Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Communication Programs (JHCCP) to implement the Health Communication Component.