Archive for October, 2011

MannionDaniels was an exhibiting sponsor at the Public Services Reform Conference at the Barbican Centre in London. This conference was organised in response to the recent Open Pubic Services White Paper in which the Coalition set out their goals for public service reform, and a wide range of delegates were present from local authorities, universities, businesses and the police and postal services. The White Paper advocates an end to the ‘old-fashioned, top-down, take-what-you-are-given model of public services’ in the belief that ‘giving people more control over the public services they receive, and opening up the delivery of those services to new providers, will lead to better public services for all’.

Our sponsorship of this conference was part of our initiative to link global vision to local action where we can, and was inspired by the common challenges experienced by marginalised groups at home and worldwide. Describing the challenges to the UK’s public services, the White Paper finds that ‘our society is blighted by the persistent failure to extend equal opportunity, dignity and worth to all. Inequalities in access to good schools, decent healthcare…good nutrition and so much more leave our society less free, less fair and less united’.  MannionDaniels’s international work has developed strong strategies to deliver health and social care to the globe’s poorest, least accessible communities. Our approach of prioritising community dialogue and debate and building bridges between policy makers, service providers, and vulnerable groups is relevant and transferable to marginalised groups within the UK.

Using mobile telephone technologies within the public health system is a growing trend, fuelled by the rapid rise in mobile telephone availability and coverage in developing countries.  The Royal Tropical Institute led a team of partners, including MannionDaniels, in working with the government of Sierra Leone in conducting a feasibility study in Sierra Leone. This resulted in the production of a Technical Brief in September 2011 titled: ‘mHealth for Maternal and Newborn Health in Resource-Poor and Health System Settings, Sierra Leone’. The DFID-funded study explored the behaviour and perspectives of public health workers and their managers, and of community members, towards mobile telephones. Some of the key findings are included in this Technical Brief and Phase 2 is currently underway to implement some of the main recommendations.

Read the Technical Brief here.

The full research report is available on the DFID Research for Development website here.