PCI implements what we call “community-driven” and family-centered health and development programming. What does that mean? It means that the person, family and community are at the center of our focus and we work together to address the threats, vulnerabilities and challenges that they face rather than focus on a particular disease or specialty subject area. Working at community level involves engaging people in a process of discovery, helping them understand and measure the challenges they face and how best to implement solutions. This process may take longer, but ultimately it will be more effective and more sustainable because the people who live in those communities are co-authors of the programs that make sense to them and that are practical and needs-based. These active participants can then serve as ongoing custodians of the programs and their results into the future.
One of the hallmarks of PCI’s work is our ability to help combine specialize, more vertical expertise and programming, such as medical care for people with tuberculosis (TB) , with a more person/community centered approach. Working hand in hand with the National TB Control Program in Mexico, PCI has engaged medical and community personnel as a team to focus on meeting the needs of the people affected as opposed to curing a disease. As an external evaluator of the program remarked:
“An innovation…is the assignment of TB-specific staff to monitor treatment. In the past, personnel attending TB patients at the community level divided their time between activities of many programs. The ability to focus on the needs and adherence of TB patients varied depending on competing priorities of the center and jurisdiction. As a result of having personnel specifically assigned to attend to TB patients and their families, the treatment of this illness has moved closer to a patient-centered, case management model rather than a disease-centered, medical model.”