Essential Health Care (EHC)

Essential health care (EHC) is the foundation of BRAC's health programme combining promotive, preventive and basic curative services. EHC has revolutionised the primary healthcare approach in Bangladesh, reaching millions with low cost basic health services through BRAC's frontline community health workers.

EHC aims to improve reproductive, maternal, neonatal and child health along with the nutritional status of women and children. The programme further aims to reduce vulnerability to infectious, communicable diseases and non-communicable diseases. The programme provides primary healthcare services including maternal and child healthcare, basic treatment foracute respiratory infections (ARIs) andpromotesfamily planning methods and safe delivery practices.Usage of proper sanitation, safe drinking water andhygiene-specific and sensitive messages are also disseminated among communities.

The EHC programme has partnered with different government agencies under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to observe national health-specific and sensitive days and events across the nation. Moreover, collaboration with the government to promote family planning, immunisation of children and distribution of vitaminA capsules across communities are a few of the many successes of the programme.

In 2002, theprogramme collaborated with Challenging the Frontiers of Poverty Reduction Targeting the Ultra Poor (CFPR-TUP) to provide the ultra poorwith access to primary healthcare. In addition to bringing healthcare services forultra poor families free of cost, complicated cases are referred to public and private facilities and the programme provides financial support whenever required.

Currently the programme is operating in all 64 districts of the country and delivering healthcare services to over 120 million people, serving as a platform for other health interventions.