Mohammad Alhabsyi

Ashoka Fellow
Ternate, Indonesia
Fellow Since 2012


This profile was prepared when Mohammad Alhabsyi was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2012.
The New Idea
In 2003, an outbreak of malaria struck many villages in South Halmahera, Indonesia claiming 267 lives. In light of this, Dr. Moh realized that eradicating malaria and communicable diseases is everyone’s responsibility. Through the Malaria Center, he developed an integrated system that connects communities and different government offices in the pursuit of malaria prevention and treatment. He has transformed the way the government addresses malaria control by flipping the strategy from top-down to bottom-up. His strategy begins with individuals and neighborhoods, and his treatment now has community members taking the lead in controlling the mosquito-borne disease and engaging government offices to take part in the effort.

Through this new process, Dr. Moh created a new role for individuals in villages, empowering them with the tools and methods to identify potential outbreaks of disease and begin prevention at a hyper-local level. Dr. Moh developed Village Malaria Committees, a system that educates community members not only about what causes malaria and on how it is transmitted, but how to recognize signs and symptoms, improving preventive collective practices and ingraining treatment-seeking behaviors. He also created channels to connect the local needs to the appropriate government offices, which has successfully prevented outbreaks over the past three years, especially for vulnerable populations, such as infants and pregnant women.

Dr. Moh and his colleagues pushed the provincial and district governments to issue regulations that force key government institutions to collaborate in eradicating malaria. Through the development of a curriculum for kindergarten and primary school students, Dr. Moh is educating Indonesian youth about malaria. He has also lobbied local governments and the District House Representative to ensure that 40 percent of annual village budgets are dedicated to eradicate malaria at the local level. To date, Malaria Centers have been set up in seven districts across North Maluku province. Currently, Dr. Moh and his colleagues are working on the replication of his methods in Eastern Indonesia islands, where South and West Sulawesi provinces have already started the model. The Ministry of Health and the Global Fund have replicated the model in eight and five provinces, respectively.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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