This brief provides an overview of the community health system in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The community health system is decentralized and operates across five levels: national, provincial, health zone, health area, and community. Various policy documents guide DRC’s community health system, including The National Health Development Plan 2016–2020. Relais communautaire (RECOs) are the main cadre of community health workers operating in the DRC. They are volunteers who provide a minimum package of reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health services, including the provision of family planning; integrated community case management for malaria, diarrhea, and respiratory diseases; nutrition counseling; water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), HIV, and AIDS education; and disease prevention. RECOs conduct home visits to approximately 50 households per month. They also provide referrals to health facilities and conduct community-based surveillance. RECOs collaborate largely with the Community Outreach Unit to plan, implement, and monitor interventions and the services they provide.
Frontline Health Project. 2020. "The community health system in the DRC: An overview." Washington, DC: Population Council.
Frontline Health: Harmonizing Metrics, Advancing Evidence, Accelerating Policy