The Ministry of Health (MOH), represented by the Department of Community Health Initiative issued a Manual of Healthy Village Program, where deals with the methodological steps to implement the program.
The Manual contains two main parts; where the first part has the conceptual framework for the program and the second part touch upon the practical method, as well as the program implementation phases in the village starting from selection of the village to the community planning, and studying the current situation towards implementing the plans to develop the village.
It was found that the main causes of morbidity are illiteracy, overpopulation, food shortage, lack of safe water, poor of environmental sanitation and high levels of poverty. All these causes are out of the health sector framework and related to social and economic factors. Therefore, it has been concluded that to improve the level of health for a community, it requires a developmental and integrated vision basically aimed at improving the quality of life.
The Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean of the World Health Organization has called to adopt the "community-based initiatives" or the "community initiatives" as an integrated socio-economic approach based on the participation of the community with all its various sectors and individuals in order to improve the environmental, social and economic levels, as these levels are the determinants of health.
The health community initiatives are one of the community intervention tools facing the challenges of the health sector in most countries, which aims to improve the quality of people's life by meeting their basic needs and promoting their positive lifestyle. In addition, it also aims to create a community partnership that contributes to advance development by assessing the current situation, identifying needs and setting the priorities according to a specific methodology towards achieving the community self-management.
The concept and mechanisms of implementing the healthy village initiative, which is the core of this Manual, is based mainly on improving the health conditions and quality of life for the rural population. The Manual contains integrated health and environment activities based on the primary healthcare. These activities are being planned and implemented in the village by the population themselves according to their own needs and self-potentials, provided that the government sectors should provide the possible administrative, technical and material support.
It is worth mentioning that this Manual complements the first version of Community Initiatives Implementation Manual, which prepared and issued by the MOH Department of Community Health Initiative in 2008.Considering that the "Healthy Villages" approach, which applied in the Sultanate since 2002 became an advanced model, it has achieved a significant response from the community members (in the village) and the partners of the governmental sectors and civil community authorities, as well as a great spread in (27) healthy villages across various Governorates of the Sultanate.