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Science Health Allied Research Education (SHARE), Rural Effective Affordable Comprehensive Healthcare (REACH) Ranga Reddy district, Andhra Pradesh

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SHARE India was established in 1986 as a research society, and was recognized as a Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (SIRO) by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India. Its twin goals are; i) Institutional research in medical schools, and ii) undertake research studies relevant to India and Global Health. SHARE India is based in Hyderabad, with its REACH field unit in Ghanpur Village, Medchal Mandal, Ranga Reddy district, Andhra Pradesh.

SHARE India initiated the Rural Effective Affordable Comprehensive Healthcare (REACH) program to create a proactive healthcare delivery system that offers promotive, preventive, and primary healthcare to rural populations. The approach is to map (GPS) each household, and track each beneficiary. Each beneficiary’s demographic profile, health and medical records are maintained, with information gathered by well-trained Community Health Volunteers (CHVs), who are supervised by Health Supervisors and field coordinators. Antenatal care, immunization and family planning fall within the ambit of REACH’s objectives.

The REACH project’s tracking system has helped increase full immunization coverage to 93%, and lowered the total fertility rate to less than replacement level. SHARE hopes that the REACH framework proves to be scalable beyond Medchal, to cover the entire state of Andhra Pradesh, or even the whole of India. The current model also involves the creation of a parallel infrastructure alongside government health workers, and SHARE hopes for an evolution into a public-private partnership (PPP) model to improve cost-effectiveness.

Besides REACH, SHARE India has also initiated a longitudinal study on the socio-economic and environmental determinants of child health (LIFE Study), and projects on cervical cancer, disability and age, and intestinal parasitic and vaginal infections.

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