Phase II of the Health for All Project Closes – Here are the Achievements

The Health for All project closed its second phase on March 31, 2023, marking significant achievements in the support of Primary Health Care service in the country. As we reflect upon the fruitful four years behind us, we express our gratitude to our collaborators, partners, and healthcare experts and professionals who, with their support, make it possible for the Albanian population to receive better medical services today and in the future.

Here are some of the key achievements of the second phase made possible with the support of HAP:

Elaboration and approval of the Strategy for Development of PHC services in Albania, 2020-2025. HAP supported technically MoHSP in 2019 to elaborate the draft of a PHC strategy. The Council of Ministers approved on May 20, 2020 the Strategy for Development of PHC in Albania 2020-2025.

New models of home care services for homebound and elderly patients were developed and implemented with the support of HAP. The home care package, prepared with the support of HAP, was approved by the MoHSP in December 2021. These services were initially piloted in 9 health centers in Fier and Diber and then were rolled out to 22 other centres in 5 geographical regions, where patients began receiving home care in February 2023.

New protocols and guidelines for the control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and care for the elderly in primary healthcare were developed and approved by the MoHSP in July 2022. Efforts are currently underway to implement these protocols at the national level.

Elaboration and approval of the new profiles of health care providers in PHC. HAP supported partner agencies in developing 10 new profiles for nurses, physicians, and other health-related professions, which are being implemented nationwide under the leadership of the Operator with the support of HAP.

A new professional Master’s in Family Nursing was developed and is being provided in close collaboration with the Faculty of Medical Technical Sciences. Since the start of the master’s program in November 2021, two cohorts of students joined the program, of which 8 graduated in 2022 and 17 are expected to graduate in 2023. The program will continue to be offered in the coming years by the Medical University of Tirana.

Continuing Education of PHC providers has been intensified and Peer Groups have been extended to all the regions of Albania. Peer groups are a well-tailored tool that facilitates the implementation of new elements of the primary healthcare reform, such as home care, NCD protocols, nurse profiles, etc. During the four years of the second phase of HAP, 196 peer groups have been operating, involving 370 doctors and 1,688 family nurses. Additionally, HAP has supported various training sessions attended by approximately 2,192 primary healthcare providers. Based on this data, HAP has been the primary source and most significant supporter of continuing education activities for primary healthcare providers in Albania in the past four years.

Three new PHC facilities destroyed by the earthquake in November 2019 were rebuilt and furnished. Two of them were handed over to the respective medicine teams in January 2022, while the third was handed over in June 2023.

12 health facilities (4 health centres and 8 health posts) were rehabilitated. The investment was carried out through a co-financing mechanism with five municipalities, where HAP covered 70% of the overall costs and the respective municipalities covered 30%. To our knowledge, this is the first time municipalities have invested in the rehabilitation of health facilities in their territories.

These significant interventions carried out during the second phase of HAP have facilitated nationwide improvements in access to primary healthcare services and the quality of services provided by health centres and posts, both through the training of medical teams and the infrastructure.