Astellas Global Health Foundation/ AMPATH
The Astellas Global Health Foundation (“Foundation”) has awarded a three-year grant to the Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare (AMPATH), under the direction of the Indiana University Foundation. The program is expected to provide 400,000 people access to mental health programming, and development of a group transition home in Kenya.
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Goal 1: To increase access to and quality of mental health care for patients in western Kenya.
Objective 1.1: Further develop and integrate mental health services in AMPATH’s Population Health FLTR (Find, Link, Treat, and Retain) strategy for non-communicable disease care.
Objective 1.2: Build ancillary support services including pharmaceutical supply chains, electronic health records, and medical supplies to deliver mental health services.
Objective 1.3: Integrate mental health services into and scale BIGPIC community-based group care in Bungoma County.
Objective 1.4: Establish specialized mental health services, Centers of Excellence, at county hospitals by improving psychiatric training within primary care physician training programs.
Goal 2: To empower patients with mental health disorders to lead productive and independent lives by developing a transitional group home.
Objective 2.1: Pilot the development of a transitional group home and center to ensure continued improvement post hospitalization of patients with severe mental health disorders.
Objective 2.2: Develop support services, a life-skills coaching program, and a transition plan for patients residing in the transitional group home center.
The Astellas Global Health Foundation (AGHF) is a tax-exempt, non-profit corporation that awards grants to support charitable purposes with a focus on improving access to health in underserved global communities, building resilient communities and providing disaster support in order to make a sustainable impact on the health of people around the world, working toward “One World, A Healthier Tomorrow.” To learn more about the AGHF please visit www.astellasglobalhealthfoundation.org.
Through support provided through the AGHF grant, AMPATH is integrating mental health services into its existing chronic disease system focused on hypertension and diabetes care within public health facilities in western Kenya. First, as part of finding patients with mental health disease, AMPATH will engage the community with a mental health education/awareness campaign including developing pamphlets on mental health disease, presentations in schools and at community gatherings, and one day workshops with key community leaders including religious leaders, teachers, county leadership, chiefs, and village elders. Second, AMPATH will integrate mental health services into its community-based Bridging Income Generation through Provision of Incentives for Care (BIGPIC) groups. Third, AMPATH will continue to increase the number of disease-specific support groups. Peer support groups have been an effective service delivery model for patients suffering from mental health diseases in high resource settings, and AMPATH’s alcohol abuse groups have been very successful in western Kenya. Finally, AMPATH will further innovate on its success with groups by providing group transitional housing and care for patients with severe mental health disorders.
Addressing the housing needs for mentally ill persons is key for rehabilitation and must be considered in the long-term management of these patients. Group homes provide patients a safe and supportive environment that provides them the opportunity to make and maintain supportive social relationships. For people with schizophrenia struggling with symptoms such as apathy, lack of energy, and extreme withdrawal, group homes empower them with a purpose as they perform daily tasks. Finally, this strategy will decongest the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) allowing improved access for those patients most in need. Many of the patients admitted are stable but have no safe place for re-integration into society. With this proposal, AMPATH plans to develop a group home and rehabilitation center that will allow patients to receive psychological care, life skills coaching, structured living, and linkage to jobs and training in the community. These programs will improve outcomes for patients with mental health disorders, decrease hospitalizations, and increase access to care at the referral hospital for those with acute needs.
With three years of funding from the AGHF, AMPATH will scale-up and integrate its novel approaches to mental health into the ongoing population health activities of AMPATH. This approach would enable AMPATH to significantly augment ongoing care for chronic diseases which is compromised by comorbid mental health disorders while also ensure sustainability beyond the three years of funding provided by the AGHF.
“The Astellas Global Health Foundation funding will help AMPATH to meaningfully expand our mental health programming, as we are committed to improving access to and quality of mental health care, reducing treatment gaps and empowering patients in western Kenya.”
“This grant will provide training for community health volunteers to screen for mental health disorders and refer members of the Kenyan community to appropriate care facilities to improve health outcomes for these patients.”
“Access to mental health care is a worldwide issue with a particularly significant lack of proper diagnosis and treatment among low- and middle-income populations. The important work AMPATH is doing in western Kenya improves the diagnosis and sustains treatment of mental illness for communities in critical need.”
Results and milestones
AMPATH has embarked on adopting remote options for clinical and community-based mental health care by creating two call lines to provide follow up and clinical encounters; joined COVID-19 response initiatives by offering mental health screening and care in a county quarantine facility and starting a call line for patients to call with mental health issues; began working with the Tumaini Innovation Centre supporting street associated children and families in Eldoret to help them reintegrate back to their homes and communities.
Additionally, AMPATH rolled out a series of facility training and mentorship sessions, conducted public education targeting the police officers given their role in enforcing law and order during the COVID-19 pandemic. Most excitingly, AMPATH started construction on the transitional home building.
AMPATH held 35 sensitization sessions with Uasin Gishu County police departments and 667 officers were sensitized on mental health disorders and sources of help; identified 31 police officers as having various mental health issues and initiated linkage processes for them to access care; held teaching sessions on mental health for patients in Kitale County Referral Hospital and Moi’s Bridge Subcounty Hospital for 104 patients, of this number, identified five patients with mental health issues whom were linked to care.
- Non-communicable Diseases
SGDs the partnership contributes to
- 3.4: NCDs (including mental health)
- 3.8: Achieve universal health coverage
Logistics and Supply Chain
Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare (AMPATH)
- Mental & Neurological Disorders
- Addictive Disorders
- Anxiety disorders