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Project title: Practical strategies for improving the Sustainability and Scale up of Better Health Programme interventions in Southeast Asia

Led by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and co-developed with partner countries (Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Philippines), the Better Health Programme (BHP) addresses non-communicable diseases and strengthens local healthcare systems. Originally planned to invest £79.3m (£22.1 million in Southeast Asia), Better Health Programme covers 520 million adults over 3 years (2020–2022) in eight partner countries.

Better Health Programme Country teams have incorporated sustainability approaches from the outset such as developing sustainability plan and project handover. However, the COVID-19 pandemic and UK Overseas Development Assistance budget reallocation has prompted significant changes within the program. The overall aim of this project was to find evidence that can better inform the sustainability and scale-up of the Better Health Programme interventions in Southeast Asia and to develop a research brief that summarises the local and global evidence that will provide practical solutions to improve the sustainability and with the scaling up of the BHP interventions.

The objectives of the project are:

  • To assess how sustainability and scaling up success factors have integrated into the design and implementation of the BHP interventions.
  • To explore the enablers and barriers of sustainability and scaling up.
  • To identify practical solutions that can improve sustainability and scaling up of BHP interventions.

This project has now developed practical strategies that can improve with the sustainability and the scale up of community-based obesity prevention interventions in Malaysia.

There has been an advocacy for a better front-of-pack labelling system in Thailand, support by the Local Learning Networks for continuing professional development of healthcare workers in the Philippines, and on the non-communicable disease surveillance systems within Vietnam.

For more information, contact Tilahun Haregu.

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