Improving Community Logistics: Using Hovercraft to Improve Distribution of Health Commodities in Madagascar

Improving Community Logistics: Results from the Use of Hovercraft to Improve the Distribution of Health Commodities in Boeny Region, Madagascar.

This report outlines a Community Logistics Improvement Project that piloted a solution for the year-round distribution of essential medicines to communities deemed inaccessible for some or all of the year. The two main objectives of this project were to improve the availability of health commodities at the community level and reduce stock-outs. Between December 2012 and June 2013, the Community Logistics Improvement Project used a combination of hovercraft and four wheel drive vehicles (4x4s) to supply health commodities to a Point d’Approvisionnement (PA) or supply point in each of the seven communes of Mitsinjo District, Boeny Region. A PA is a supply point, established by MAHEFA’s partner organisation Population Services International (PSI), which allows CHWs to travel to a central point to collect health commodities for use in the community. Four communes were supplied by 4×4, while the most hard-to-reach areas which are inaccessible by road were supplied by hovercraft. Hovercrafts are ideal for very specific geographical conditions as they can travel across land and water, they can be especially useful on rivers prone to significant changes in depth due to seasonal changes.