Samara Andrade

Samara Andrade, Vice President, Program Strategy and Partnerships, HCP CureBlindnessSightLife international

Samara Andrade

Vice President, Program Strategy and Partnerships, HCP CureBlindness/SightLife international

In her role at HCP Cureblindness Samara oversees programmatic strategy to support health system strengthening in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa with a focus on primary care, prevention, tertiary care, and policy and advocacy.  She leads partnerships across these programs, working with social impact ESG funders, Ministries of Health, USAID, and other non-profits, to support the delivery of integrated people centered services for rural communities. Prior to this role Samara worked for more than a decade with the United Nations, serving in various roles from partnerships to policy across humanitarian, peace and development contexts in Sudan, Libya, Nepal, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Switzerland and New York.  In her tenure with the United Nations, she led key policy changes in gender, gender-based violence prevention and response, women’s economic development, and mental health and psychosocial support. Samara serves on the Board for Global Leadership Forum and is co-founder of Feet on the Ground. She holds a Masters in International Policy Studies with a focus on Gender from the Middlebury Institute for International Studies.

All Sessions by Samara Andrade

2:30 pm - 4:00 pm

Women on the Frontlines: An Undervalued and Unprotected Workforce

Led by: WomenLift Health.

Women are the backbone of every successful health workforce and health initiative. They make up 70% of the global workforce and 90% of frontline healthcare workers (HCWs), yet they are overburdened, underpaid, unsupported and unprotected in the workplace. According to the Community Health Impact Coalition, 50% community frontline workers in LMICs, and 86% in Africa, are not salaried. Country policies and frameworks on the incentive-based or volunteer labor of frontline workers are compounded by donor-funded primary care programs that support delivering healthcare through unpaid labor as an acceptable mechanism to enable access to care and achieve universal healthcare coverage, thus perpetuating forms of structural violence. In most LMIC’s there is no legal/policy framework specifically designed to protect frontline health workers. The leadership and power structures frontline HCWs report to are still predominantly male. According to the #HealthToo report by Women in Global Health, which analyzed women’s stories from 40 countries, women face blatant harassment and assault in the workplace. Failing to value, promote, pay or protect frontline workers impacts retention and quality of service delivery and ultimately negatively impacts the health system.

This panel brings together Alumnae from the Leadership Journey and women working on the issues of the frontline women workforce. The session will outline the current state of women on the frontlines in low-resource countries, with particular emphasis on Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa’s community health workforce. We will discuss the critical need to build leadership among women while simultaneously working to shift gender-based social perceptions and power dynamics and address issues of pay and protection. Panelists will share specific country examples which have been undertaken to understand and address these inequities, discuss challenges, and opportunities for donors, advocacy groups, and ministries of health to support a shift to a more empowered, safe, and fairly paid frontline workforce.

Moderator: Ms. Lanice C. Williams, Independent Consultant; Chair, Women in Global Health Washington, DC Chapter

1. Samara Andrade - Vice President, Program Strategy and Partnerships, HCP CureBlindness/SightLife international
2. Dr. Sanjana Mohan, Director, Basic Healthcare Services
3. Dr. Choolwe Jacobs, Lead for Women in Global Health Zambia Chapter
4. Dr. Priya Nanda, Independent Consultant, Gender, SRHR, and Women’s Economic Empowerment