The Health Communication Partnership (HCP) based at Johns Hopkins Center
for Communication Programs recently published Taking Community Empowerment to Scale Lessons Learned from Three Successful Experiences that describes three programs in the Philippines, five Arab countries in the Middle East, and Madagascar that used community empowerment approaches to achieve public health impact at scale. Recently, I have been envisioning a similar document related to IPC at PSI– a series of case studies of PSI IPC programs to be used as a tool to identify key characteristics of scale-up-able IPC programs to improve IPC program quality and sustainability as well as to help us think more strategically about how to achieve more widespread reach with interpersonal interventions.
Bringing programs to scale is often a key issue raised by donors and a fundamental challenge that was highlighted in a report published last year by the Global HIV Prevention Working Group that claimed “if comprehensive HIV prevention were brought to scale, half of the infections projected to occur by 2015 could be averted.” The public health community has developed strong evidence and effective model programs, but scale-up beyond pilot interventions in localized geographic areas can prevent more widespread impact on the epidemic. The HCP document identifies fourteen factors critical to achieving scale with the three example programs and provides some interesting examples of community-based programs.