KANDAHAR CITY, Kandahar Province – The doctor gently places the diaphragm of his stethoscope on the child’s chest. The little girl looks at the stethoscope curiously but says nothing, while her mother, Sharifa, 50, holds her arm so that the doctor can easily examine her.
He completes the check-up and writes a prescription, telling Sharifa to administer the medication periodically to lower her daughter’s fever.
“Until recently, we did not visit a medical doctor and had always used home remedies,” says Sharifa. “But we switched to coming to the clinic when we learned that the doctors are from our community and their medications are good quality.”
The doctor, Sayed, is at Dr. Adam’s Clinic in Kandahar Province. Along with 17 colleagues, Dr. Sayed provides daily health care services in the clinic from 8 am to 4 pm, seven days a week. The clinic serves a local population of 32,000 people, offering general check-ups, gynecology and obstetrics services, laboratory facilities, vaccination, malnutrition treatment, and a pharmacy. An average of 200 patients visit the clinic every day.
Dr. Adam’s Clinic is among a group of health centers that has come under the supervision of the Bu Ali Rehabilitation and Aid Network (BARAN) since July 1, 2015. BARAN provides health care services and monitoring oversight for 51 health centers in the 17 districts of Kandahar Province. It is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that works in Kandahar to provide a basic package of health services, contracted by the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) under the System Enhancement for Health Action in Transition (SEHAT) Program. The services are implemented through a performance-based partnership agreement between MoPH and BARAN.
SEHAT aims to expand the scope, quality, and coverage of health services provided to the population, particularly for the poor and is supported by the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group’s fund for the poorest countries, and the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF), in partnership with multiple donors.