Abt Associates: Bold thinkers driving real-world impact
Sugd Province, Tajikistan - Dr. Marhabo Bobojonova proudly displays her patient list: she regularly sees more than 20 patients per day. Prior to attending an Abt-led USAID training workshop, Dr. Bobojonova was seeing only three or four patients a day. In rural Sugd Oblast in northwestern Tajikistan, where people typically visit hospitals for health care and rely upon specialists for treatment, this kind of popularity is a feat for a family physician. It also represents an important step toward providing people in Tajikistan with primary health care that they can recognize and trust.
As part of USAID’s Quality Health Care Project, Abt Associates has been working with Tajikistan’s Ministry of Health to train a new generation of family physicians and re-train specialists to become family doctors. The goal of the project, which operates in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, is to improve the health status of Central Asians by building the capacity of national health systems to better meet the health needs of vulnerable groups.
Workforce Retrained to Focus on Primary Health Care
Beginning in 2002, USAID began working with Tajikistan’s Ministry of Health to build a cost-efficient and effective primary health care system for the country. To meet this goal, Abt developed a unified curriculum for training family physicians and helped to establish regional family medicine training centers. During the trainings, physicians are re-educated on a wide-range of common ailments, helping them treat patients of all ages and across different areas of medicine. They are also trained in evidence-based standards of care, which helps them provide more effective treatment, care and services for patients.
Today, through partnerships with the Ministry of Health, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, the Swiss Development Corporation, and the Agha Khan Foundation, USAID’s Quality Health Care Project continues to work towards building a cadre of capable family doctors, trained in evidence-based medicine and national clinical guidelines based on international standards.
“By strengthening primary health care and family medicine, we can provide high-quality, cost-efficient and accessible health care throughout Tajikistan,” said Marian Sheridan, Country Manager for the project.
Abt Associates is a mission-driven, global leader in research, evaluation and program implementation in the fields of health, social and environmental policy, and international development. Known for its rigorous approach to solving complex challenges, Abt Associates is regularly ranked as one of the top 20 global research firms and one of the top 40 international development innovators. The company has multiple offices in the U.S. and program offices in more than 40 countries.