Leadership in health in Cameroon: Dr Moussi Charlotte wins 2018 award for excellence in women's health leadership in Cameroon

12 January, 2020

*Dear HIFA Colleagues,*

The WHO has designated the year 2020 "year of the nurse and midwife". In fact, everywhere in the world the workforce in health is carried by women. This role depending on contexts and cultures puts women health workers at risk. This is in relation to the status of the woman and the growing challenges that present health systems face. In spite of these, women health professionals and especially in low resource settings affront the challenge and work in the development of health and mental health systems.

Globally, like in Cameroon women health professionals are thus at the forefront of the development of health and mental health systems.

Since its inception in 2016 *the award for excellence in women's health leadership in Cameroon initiated by the health media Echos Santé* has been working closely to bring to light the work done by Cameroonian female health professionals in developing the health system. On the 31st December 2019, Dr Charlotte Moussi Regional Health Delegate of the Center Region was awarded the prize for excellence in women's health leadership in Cameroon for the year 2018; for her contribution in developing Cameroon’s health system. This event which was marked by the presence of the Governor of the center region Nasseri Paul Bea and members of the Association of Science Journalists and Health Communicators for the Promotion of Health (AJC-PROSANTE) brought to light her contributions in enabling Cameroon’s health system to be what it has to be : robust, performant, resilient and competitive. Briefly Dr Moussi’s work according to investigations done by the health journal Echos Sante;

- She has implemented a strategy to clean up the health card (several illegal health units have closed the doors while other promoters have regularized their situation). As part of the fight against street drugs, she organized a survey in the 30 health districts of the center region which helped identify all of the street drug outlets. The region now has data to be able to effectively combat this scourge. Speaking of disease prevention, she strongly fought cholera. This has kept the region from recording many deaths from cholera and other diseases.

- As part of continuing training of the (health) personnel under her charge, she organized numerous capacity-building sessions for her colleagues in the region despite limited resources and a real support structure.

- In the fighting against corruption in hospital setting she stood by the patients’ side so no extra fee be requested from them in any way. She is therefore considered a real model of governance in public health.

- What is more, Dr Moussi has succeeded in boosting vaccination coverage in the center region.

The HIFA in Cameroon has been working since 2013 in supporting all levels of Cameroon’s health and mental health system. Promoting health and mental health by enabling building awareness over the use of reliable health and mental health information in all aspects of health development. In 2020 the HIFA in Cameroon is very determined and motivated to collaborate and support current efforts by the Ministry of Public Health and other health stake holders in health, mental health and advocate for more support to Universal Health Coverage (UHC, including UHC for mental health), health promotion, mental health promotion, Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) and mental health, and access to quality readable healthcare and mental healthcare information. The latter is often neglected in spites of the growing evidence it has in shaping health and mental health systems.

Cameroon’s health system thanks to women leadership in health is making significant progress in its development and performance. I am very optimistic about greater improvement in Cameroon’s health system with women leadership in health and mental health. More concrete measures such as the award for excellence in women's health leadership ought to be made to empower women health professionals. This requires the support of all health stakeholders and the government of Cameroon.

*Kindest regards,*

Didier Demassosso

HIFA Country Representative for Cameroon

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Didier Demassosso

Mental Health Expert

HIFA Country Representative For Cameroon

HIFA Country representative of the year 2014

MHIN Africa Knowledge Exchange volunteer assistant

Member of the African Evidence Network (AEN)

Cameroon Human Right Fellow 2017

Vonlunteer at the International Association For Counselling

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Tel :(237) 670-14-01-23/694-90-20-29

twitter:@DDemassosso

skype: Didier Demassosso

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HIFA profile: Didier Demassosso is a School Counsellor at the Ministry of Secondary Education in Cameroon. HIFA Country Representative For Cameroon/HIFA Country Represenative of the year 2014 and Mental Health Worker. Professional interests: Health Promotion, Mental Health Promotion, School mental health promotion, School health promotion, Mobile Health, Mental health, Public health, Public mental health, Trauma, Environment,the mind, ICT, Culture, Adolescent/Child health, Maternal health. He is a HIFA Country Representative.

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Email: didier.demassosso AT gmail.com