Community and civil society
roles are not limited to promotion and prevention, but extend
also to providing curative and rehabilitative inputs. We have
already explored the involvement of civil society as service
provider in the previous module.
Civil organizations are involved
in many different ways in health service provision. Some may
provide services directly (such as mission providers, trade unions
and other NGOs). Other NGOs may support state, private sector
or even international NGO programmes. These may be contracted
by the state, but often are not.
In many cases, NGO services
provide important cover to groups otherwise disadvantaged in
health service access. NGO networks have assisted governments
and WHO in major treatment campaigns, such as the Africare, Global
2000 assistance with the distribution of Ivermectin in the campaign
to control river blindness in West Africa. NGOs can thus be valuable
partners in drug distribution, even while the state remains the
major public procurement agency.