Riders for Health currently manages 17 vehicles for Partners In Health (PIH) in the Neno district. With 10 motorcycles and seven four-wheeled vehicles managed by Riders, PIH provides HIV treatment and health care in communities across the district.
Earlier this year, Riders launched a Sample Transport (ST) programe in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Howard University Technical Asistance Program (HUTAP). We have mobilised 30 motorcycle couriers and two technicians to cover nine districts of Malawi.
We are also currently working with a number of other health partners to scale up our operations in Malawi and support health care delivery across regions in the country.
Preventing the transmission of HIV/AIDS
In July 2014, we began a partnership with the Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric Aids Foundation (EGPAF) to improve the delivery time of laboratory samples and HIV-related test results in the Northern and Central Zones of Malawi. This partnership has expanded our sample transport programme to five districts. Find out more about our work with EGPAF here.
Riders’ reliable transport services enable our partners to multiply the impact of their work. To ensure sustainability, Riders works in collaboration with the MoH and other health-focused partners, effecting change both on the ground and at policy level.
- Partners In Health (PIH)
Malawi has a population of over 17 million people and one of the highest population densities in sub-Saharan Africa. HIV/AIDS rates are high, with 80,000 people dying of AIDS every year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). At present, 11% of the population are estimated to be living with the disease and 600,000 children across the country have been orphaned as a result.
It is currently estimated that there are only two physicians and 38 nurses per 100,000 population and ‘service provision’ is cited by the WHO as one of the major challenges in the development of Malawi’s health system. Over 80% of the population live rurally and are dependent on outreach care services, yet less than half of the country’s road infrastructure is paved. Characterised by muddy, pot-holed tracks, travel is hard, and without reliable transportation, the provision of even the most basic health care services – diagnosis, treatment and disease monitoring - is a significant challenge.
In 2010, Riders began to invest in making the first steps towards establishing a robust presence in Malawi.
In December 2011, a contract was signed between Riders and Partners In Health (PIH) to support the management of PIH’s fleet of vehicles.
In 2012, a contract was signed to expand our services in Malawi.
In 2014, we established a partnership with the Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric Aids Foundation (EGPAF) to reduce the delivery times of HIV-related samples and test results between rural communities and health facilities.
100% of trainees from Partners In Health were either ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with their training. Of the 28 health workers we trained from PIH, 26/28 rated their experiences in safe driving and motorcycle riding and preventive vehicle maintenance as five out of five. The remaining two rated it four out of five.
Programme manager: Mphatso Kachule
Mphatso joined Riders for Health in 2012. Mphatso has several years experience in the development sector working on a variety of poverty reduction projects in Malawi. Mphatso’s broad experiences have given her the opportunity to interact with many organisations, learning how to recruit and maintain diversity with volunteers and negotiating with different partners.
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I feel the Riders management has offloaded stress and worry from the main players in our fleet management. Tara Loyd, Project Manager, Partners In Health, Neno district