Three local projects, each with different objectives, target groups and results aimed at piloting innovative models to promote elements such as strong community participation, a reorientation from only curative to integrated preventive activities and intersectoral cooperation (according to the "Healthy City" policy model of the WHO) as well as corresponding professional education courses. The Cúcuta project started in 1988, the two others in 1995. A team of experts from the German Ministry of International Cooperation, the Colombian Ministry of Health and EPOS Health Consultants had to evaluate the three projects and came to the overall very positive conclusion that the projects could be considered as models for future municipal basic health care policies, particularly with regard to user participation, family planning components and training modules. The mission mainly recommended measures concerning the internal systematisation among the existing projects, a generalisation of gender aspect awareness, better horizontal cooperation and coordination between the various donor and sponsor agencies' activities as well as an extension of piloted models at the national level, with the city of Medellín as a prioritary.
The evaluation mission had to assess the "lessons learned" for the further development and improved implementation of a project named "Integrated Health Sector Development in Cities". Key questions for the mission were: - Contribution of projects to using health issues as a motor for social development? - How far have projects succeeded in mobilising and involving target populations? - Catalyst role of projects concerning the interaction between the various local partners and stakeholders? - Had intersectoral cooperation been successful? - Results of support to the project authorities on the local level? - Assessment of conditions for success; chances of sustainability and generalisation? - Assessment of quality improvement and cost efficiency of health care services?