Citizen Voice and Action (CVA) is a local level advocacy and social accountability approach that facilitates dialogue between communities and government in order to improve health service delivery. CVA focuses primarily on citizen monitoring of health sector service delivery against established governance standards. Citizens are then empowered to engage in a dialogue with decision-makers to address identified problems and gaps. CVA can contribute to enhanced relationships between healthcare staff and patients, leading to increased health-seeking behaviour, higher outpatient numbers, and more women giving birth at clinics and using antenatal services, as examples. Further, CVA can be used to identify patterns of government failure that are ripe advocacy targets for systemic reform at the provincial, national, or even global levels.
This brief describes the approach used with CVA to improve health programmes.