Version Two of the Fixed Amount Reimbursement Agreement, FARA which runs from 2016 to 2021, is being fully operationalized, focusing on three objectives.
Dating back to 2011, the USAID sponsored project within the Ministry of Health came into being to support the National Health Plan and Policy, through health systems strengthening, service delivery and technical capacity building.
Since then, there is visible evidence of the FARA’s impact on the healthsector, owing to the achievement of some significant gains in thecountry’s health outcomes.
The FARA version Two which is currently being rolled out, focuses on three principle objectives—to improve Public Financial Management at the national and Central levels, strengthen the ministry’s performancemanagement at central and sub national levels as well as to affect increase in the use of quality facility and community based health services.
During the regular Monthly FARA implementation meeting that brings together County Health Teams, implementing partners and other major stakeholders working together to achieve the FARA’s dream for a betterhealth sector, the Program Manager of the USAID sponsored project, Mrs. Louise Mapleh, told the gatherings that version 2 was more about results unlike version 1 which was largely focused on processes.
“We must work harder, be proactive and not be reluctant in carrying out our duties and functions to meet the deliverables”
asserted Mrs. Mapleh.
As the FARA Version 2 rolls out, it is heavily leading towards the contracting-in-arrangement as compare to the contracting-in—a move that resulted from the conduct of a Cost Benefit Analysis. the evaluation showed that contracting-in was less cost intensive as compare to the contracting-out.
The FARA Manager clarified that the contracting-in should not be construed that the ministry is getting rid of the NGOs in the healthsector, but would rather support other roles that the NGOs will play. “We want to get more from the money that is being invested”, Mrs.Mapleh said.
In the second version, Counties would be mentored to ensure the use of Quick Book as a pre-requisite for support to Hybrid and contracted-in counties. Besides, FARA Version 2 places the responsibility on the counties themselves to quarterly conduct the PBF Performance Monitoring and Joint Integrated supportive supervision, while central will conduct similar on semiannual bases. The conducts of these activities are part of the Key Strategic Emphasis contained in the FARA Version Two.
In a splendid presentation during the meeting, the FARA Manager told the gathering that as part of the Key strategic Emphasis, USAID has hired the services of the Liberia Strategic Analysis (LSA) to conduct verification of implementation, systems and deliverables. “ LSA has started to support us. We have to see value for money, the LSA will work with you all to see that deliverables you sent is the same at the county level.” The FARA Manager added.