What does it take to be a heroine of health? Education, dedication … a stealth plan

Prossy Muyingo, a community health worker in Uganda, is being honored as a “heroine of health” for educating women on reproductive health, using a business strategy involving her hair braiding skills.

Awards Overview: The “Heroine of Health” title has been awarded to twelve women at the Women Deliver 2023 Conference.
* All honorees are from Africa, showcasing their contributions to women’s health and gender equality.
* The awards highlight the importance of women health workers, who make up nearly 70% of the healthcare workforce and are 90% of frontline health workers.

Making Connections: Muyingo used her hair salon to engage women about their healthcare needs.
* She discussed topics like contraception and directed women to appropriate clinics while braiding their hair.
* Muyingo emphasised the need for increased pay, training, and resources for community health care workers, who often struggle to make ends meet with their small cash stipends.

A Lifelong Journey: Rukaya Mumuni, a nurse and public health official from Ghana, also shared her story.
* Mumuni was inspired to pursue nursing after meeting a nurse from her own rural village and later even obtained a Master’s degree in public health.
* She advocates for improved compensation and recognition for women in healthcare, and has inspired other young women in her village through her work.

Personal Impact: Both Muyingo and Mumuni underscored the personal sacrifices many women health workers make.
* Despite financial struggles and challenges navigating the healthcare system, Muyingo’s work has helped countless women, such as guiding an HIV positive pregnant woman to the necessary care to keep her child safe.
* Mumuni continues to support the advancement of women in her community, important in a region where women healthcare workers are often undervalued and undercompensated.

View original article on NPR

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