The goal of the Marketing Innovations for Health (MIH) Project, supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is to “Contribute to sustained improvements of the health status of women and children in Bangladesh by increasing access to and demand for essential health products and services through the private sector.” The Social Marketing Company (SMC) leads this initiative in partnership with EngenderHealth, BRAC, Concerned Women for Family Development, the Population Services and Training Center, and Shimantik, with technical assistance provided by Population Services International (PSI). The project began in July 2012 and will end in July 2016. Project funding includes $15.0 million in federal cash funds, provision of contraceptive commodities expected to generate $2.2 million for program use, and $112.3 million in cost share. This project builds on the long relationship between USAID, SMC and PSI to develop social marketing in Bangladesh, heralded as “one of USAID’s greatest success stories of sustainability and sustainable development,” and previous USAID-funded work to improve private sector health care, particularly among non-formal practitioners providing primary health care services.
EVALUATION PURPOSE, QUESTIONS, AND METHODOLOGY
From September 28 to November 2, 2015, USAID commissioned a team of evaluators contracted by the Global Health Program Cycle Improvement Project to conduct a midterm review guided by three study questions:
- How effective is the MIH Project in meeting the goal, objectives of each component, and targets?
- Should USAID move into new program areas, and if so, what are these areas?
- How could USAID invest in the delivery of critical public health services and measures in the future?
USAID/Bangladesh has supported a social marketing program in Bangladesh for more than 40 years, contributing significantly to the health and well-being of Bangladeshi citizens, particularly those in the lower wealth quintiles. To be enlightened on the future direction of its social marketing program, it has requested a three-dimensional assessment of social marketing activities in Bangladesh.
The first component will evaluate SMC’s achievements under the current cooperative agreement and to note any constraints of the organization relating to implementation and performance. Special emphasis will be given to how the MIH Project has: (1) contributed to contraceptive prevalence and the use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARC), oral rehydration solution and other maternal and child health (MCH) products; (2) made available and marketed new products in family planning, MCH, tuberculosis (TB) control and health and hygiene programs; and (3) expanded the availability of family planning and LARC services in the private sector health network.
The second component will focus on new program areas where social marketing can be expanded to contribute more to addressing public health needs, including those related to maternal, child and reproductive health, communicable and non-communicable disease prevention, nutrition, and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH). In particular, this component will explore the offering of public health services of by private health practitioners and the leveraging of private resources under a social marketing program.