Rapid Access Expansion 2015 programme (RAcE 2015)

In 2012, the Government of Canada awarded a grant to the WHO Global Malaria Programme to support the scale-up of integrated community case management of childhood diseases (iCCM) in sub-Saharan Africa, using malaria as an entry point. Through the Rapid Access Expansion Programme (RAcE 2015), WHO has awarded funding of up to US$ 3 million annually to nongovernmental organizations who submitted successful proposals. The programme is now being rolled out in 5 malaria-endemic countries: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Niger and Nigeria.

Programme objectives

The programme’s first objective is to contribute to the reduction of child mortality due to malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea by increasing access to diagnostic, treatment and referral services for these diseases, and thereby accelerate progress toward the health-related Millennium Development Goals by 2015 and beyond. The activities also directly contribute to the implementation of the UN Secretary General’s Every Woman Every Child initiative.

The programme’s second objective is to generate evidence to inform WHO policy recommendations and programmatic guidance on iCCM. Lessons learned will be reviewed at annual WHO regional meetings to share experiences and identify best practices for the scale-up of iCCM programmes across sub-Saharan Africa. The project will also serve as a foundation for a comprehensive policy review on case management in the 5 target countries, and a review of WHO’s policy guidance on iCCM.

RAcE provides lifesaving services to more than half a million children in 5 countries

Since the start of the project, the RAcE 2015 programme has supported 4086 community health workers and trained 3752 new health workers across all implementation sites. A total of 648 126 cases of malaria, 403 213 cases of pneumonia, and 255 473 cases of diarrhoea have been treated. The total population accessing the services has gradually increased to 657 249 children aged 2 to 59 months.

By 2017, a total of approximately 8900 community health workers will be supported and trained in iCCM, and approximately 1.4 million children in the 5 countries will have access to these services. Between 4200 and 6200 lives will be saved per year once the project is fully implemented.

Governance and project oversight

The RAcE programme is governed by an international steering group, which provides general oversight and advice to the WHO Global Malaria Programme regarding the development and implementation of RAcE 2015, to help improve the relevance, impact and sustainability of the programme. A project review panel has been appointed to review applications for grants received from nongovernmental organizations and to make recommendations to WHO on which grant applications to accept and which ones to reject, with brief justifications.

For further information, please contact:

Mr. Gunther Baugh
Project Manager
WHO Global Malaria Programme
Tel: +41 22 791 1226

Last updated: 5 August 2015

Implementing the RAcE project

In September 2013, GMP and the WHO Regional Office for Africa held a joint meeting to review progress on the implementation of the RAcE 2015 project. The presentations given during this meeting contain a wealth of information about iCCM, and the burden of malaria, pneumonia and diarrhoea in the five selected countries.