Community Pharmacists (CPs) and Patent and Proprietary Medicine Vendors (PPMVs) are often the first point of care for many Nigerians, and when sufficiently trained, they contribute to the expansion of family planning services. Nigeria’s task shifting policy and existing regulatory and licensing bodies provide the enabling environment for PPMVs to be stratified and trained. This study explored the perceptions of stakeholders toward the pilot three-tier accreditation system instituted by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria with support from the IntegratE project.
Two rounds of qualitative phone interviews were conducted among stakeholders in Kaduna and Lagos states in 2020 and 2021. In addition, there were two rounds of phone interviews with CPs and PPMVs (program recipients) from Lagos and Kaduna states. All participants were purposively selected, based on their involvement in the IntegratE project activities. Interviews were recorded, transcribed, and coded using Atlas.ti software. Thematic analysis was conducted.
Fifteen stakeholders and 28 program recipients and 12 stakeholders and 30 program recipients were interviewed during the first and second rounds of data collection respectively. The data are presented around three main themes: 1) the pilot three-tier accreditation system; 2) enabling environment; and 3) implementation challenges. The accreditation system that allows for the stratification and training of PPMVs to provide family planning services was perceived in a positive light by majority of participants. The integrated supportive supervision team that included representation from the licensing and regulatory body was seen as a strength. However, it was noted that the licensing process needs to be more effective. Implementation challenges that need to be addressed prior to scale up include bottlenecks in licensing procedures and the deep-rooted mistrust between CPs and PPMVs.
Scale up of the three-tier accreditation system has the potential to expand access to family planning services in Nigeria. In other resource-poor settings where human resources for health are in short supply and where drug shops are ubiquitous, identifying drug shop owners, training them to offer a range of family planning services, and providing the enabling environment for them to function may help to improve access to family planning services.
BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to (1) explore evidence provided by Canadian health and social care (HASC) academic programs in meeting their profession-specific interprofessional education (IPE)-relevant accreditation standards; (2) share successes, exemplars, and challenges experienced by HASC academic programs in meeting their IPE-relevant accreditation standards; and (3) articulate the impacts of IPE-relevant accreditation standards on enabling interprofessional learning to the global HASC academic community. METHODS: Profession-specific (bilingual, if requested) surveys were developed and emailed to the Deans/Academic Program Directors of eligible academic programs with a request to forward to the individual who oversees IPE accreditation. Responses were collated collectively and by profession. Open-ended responses associated with our first objective were deductively categorized to align with the five Accreditation of Interprofessional Health Education (AIPHE) standards domains. Responses to our additional questions associated with our second and third objectives were inductively categorized into themes. RESULTS/DISCUSSION: Of the 270 HASC academic programs surveyed, 30% (n = 24) partially or completely responded to our questions. Of the 106 IPE-relevant standards where evidence was provided, 62% (n = 66) focused on the Educational Program, 88% of which (n = 58) were either met or partially met, and 47% (n = 31) of which focused on practice-based IPE. Respondents cited various exemplars and challenges in meeting IPE-relevant standards. CONCLUSIONS: The overall sentiment was that IPE accreditation was a significant driver of the IPE curriculum and its continuous improvement. The array of exemplars described in this paper may be of relevance in advancing IPE implementation and accreditation across Canada and perhaps, more importantly, in countries where these processes are yet emerging.
The sustainable development of Internet hospitals and e-health platforms relies on the participation of patients and physicians, especially on the provision of health counseling services by physicians. The objective of our study is to explore the factors motivating Chinese physicians to provide online health counseling services from the perspectives of their online and offline reputation. We collect the data of 141029 physicians from 6173 offline hospitals located in 350 cities in China. Based on the reputation theory and previous studies, we incorporate patients’ feedback as physicians’ online reputation and incorporate physicians’ offline professional status as physicians’ offline reputation. Results show that physicians’ online reputation significantly and positively influence their online counseling behaviors, whereas physicians’ offline reputation significantly and negatively influence their online counseling behaviors. We conclude that physician’s online and offline reputations show a competitive and substitute relationship rather than a complementary relationship in influencing physicians to provide online counseling services in Internet hospitals. One possible explanation for the substitute relationship could be the constraints of limited time and effort of physicians.
The coronavirus disease-19 pandemic has spread to all parts of the world. As of 20 May 2022, over 500 million confirmed cases have occurred with over 6 million deaths. In Nigeria, over 255,000 cases have occurred with more than 3000 deaths. The pandemic has adversely affected virtually all aspects of human endeavour, with a severe impact on the health system. The Nigerian health system was ill prepared for the pandemic, and this further weakened it. The impacts of the pandemic on the health system include disruption of health services, low motivation of the health workforce, unresponsive leadership and poor funding. The national response, though initially weak, was ramped up to expand capacity building, testing, public enlightenment, creation of isolation and treatment centres and research. The funding for the national response was from the government, private sector and multilateral donors. Nigeria must comprehensively strengthen its health system through motivating and building the capacity of its human resources for health, improved service delivery and provision of adequate funding, to be better prepared against future pandemics.
Objectives: Systematize and analyze the response actions related to human resources for health during the pandemic, reported by 20 countries of the Region of the Americas in the mid-term evaluation of the Plan of Action on Human Resources for Universal Access to Health and Universal Health Coverage 2018-2023 (Pan American Health Organization, 2018), and assess the importance of the policies on human resources for health (HRH) and on HRH management expressed in the Plan of Action and in the Strategy on Human Resources for Universal Access to Health and Universal Health Coverage during health emergencies and in normal times. Methods: Reports on actions taken in 20 countries of the Region against COVID-19 and for HRH were selected and systematized. These were classified as immediate contingency actions, actions related to installed capacities, and emerging actions. Results: The capacity to plan and manage HRH in countries depends on their installed, functional structures and competencies. The pandemic highlighted the need to have new job profiles, improve precarious working and contractual conditions, emphasize the gender perspective, and address numerical gaps in certain areas and levels of care. Conclusions: Linking the monitoring of the Plan of Action with the COVID-19 response demonstrated the importance of HRH governance, management, and installed capacities when responding to health emergencies and in normal times. The analysis suggests a need to review existing public policies, models of care that can guide current and future needs in HRH, the profiles required, working conditions, and ways to close numerical gaps, among other issues. The pandemic enabled countries to innovate in response to demands. The Strategy and the Plan of Action remain in place to guide and strengthen the performance of human resources for health. Objetivos: Sistematizar e analisar as ações de resposta relacionadas aos recursos humanos para a saúde durante a pandemia, relatadas por 20 países da Região das Américas na avaliação intermediária do Plano de ação sobre recursos humanos para o acesso universal à saúde e a cobertura universal de saúde 2018-2023 (Organização Pan-Americana da Saúde, 2018), e avaliar a importância das políticas e da gestão de recursos humanos expressas na estratégia e no plano durante emergências de saúde e em tempos normais. Métodos: Foram selecionados e sistematizados relatórios sobre ações contra a COVID-19 e recursos humanos para a saúde de 20 países da Região. As ações foram classificadas em ações imediatas de contingência, ações relacionadas às capacidades instaladas e ações emergentes. Resultados: As capacidades de planejamento e gestão de recursos humanos para a saúde nos países dependem das estruturas e das competências instaladas e funcionais. A pandemia tornou visível a necessidade de ter novos perfis de trabalho, melhorar as precárias condições de trabalho e contratuais, tornar visível a perspectiva de gênero e solucionar lacunas numéricas em determinadas áreas e níveis de atenção. Conclusões: A vinculação das ações contra a COVID-19 com o monitoramento do plano demonstrou a importância da governança, da gestão e das capacidades instaladas relacionadas aos recursos humanos para a saúde, para responder a emergências de saúde e em tempos normais. A análise convida à revisão das políticas públicas existentes, dos modelos de atenção necessários para orientar as necessidades atuais e futuras dos recursos humanos para a saúde, os perfis exigidos, as condições de trabalho e a cobertura das lacunas numéricas existentes, entre outras questões. A pandemia permitiu inovações nos países para responder à demanda. A estratégia e o plano continuam vigentes para orientar e fortalecer o desempenho dos recursos humanos para a saúde.
OBJECTIVE: The 2016 Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health: Workforce 2030 projected a global shortage of 18 million health workers by 2030. This article provides an assessment of the health workforce stock in 2020 and presents a revised estimate of the projected shortage by 2030. METHODS: Latest data reported through WHO's National Health Workforce Accounts (NHWA) were extracted to assess health workforce stock for 2020. Using a stock and flow model, projections were computed for the year 2030. The global health workforce shortage estimation was revised. RESULTS: In 2020, the global workforce stock was 29.1 million nurses, 12.7 million medical doctors, 3.7 million pharmacists, 2.5 million dentists, 2.2 million midwives and 14.9 million additional occupations, tallying to 65.1 million health workers. It was not equitably distributed with a 6.5-fold difference in density between high-income and low-income countries. The projected health workforce size by 2030 is 84 million health workers. This represents an average growth of 29% from 2020 to 2030 which is faster than the population growth rate (9.7%). This reassessment presents a revised global health workforce shortage of 15 million health workers in 2020 decreasing to 10 million health workers by 2030 (a 33% decrease globally). WHO African and Eastern Mediterranean regions' shortages are projected to decrease by only 7% and 15%, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The latest NHWA data show progress in the increasing size of the health workforce globally as more jobs are and will continue to be created in the health economy. It however masks considerable inequities, particularly in WHO African and Eastern Mediterranean regions, and alarmingly among the 47 countries on the WHO Support and Safeguards List. Progress should be acknowledged with caution considering the immeasurable impact of COVID-19 pandemic on health workers globally.
BACKGROUND: Investing in the health workforce is key to achieving the health-related Sustainable Development Goals. However, achieving these Goals requires addressing a projected global shortage of 18 million health workers (mostly in low- and middle-income countries). Within that context, in 2016, the World Health Assembly adopted the WHO Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health: Workforce 2030. In the Strategy, the role of official development assistance to support the health workforce is an area of interest. The objective of this study is to examine progress on implementing the Global Strategy by updating previous analyses that estimated and examined official development assistance targeted towards human resources for health. METHODS: We leveraged data from IHME's Development Assistance for Health database, COVID development assistance database and the OECD's Creditor Reporting System online database. We utilized an updated keyword list to identify the relevant human resources for health-related activities from the project databases. When possible, we also estimated the fraction of human resources for health projects that considered and/or focused on gender as a key factor. We described trends, examined changes in the availability of human resources for health-related development assistance since the adoption of the Global Strategy and compared disease burden and availability of donor resources. RESULTS: Since 2016, development assistance for human resources for health has increased with a slight dip in 2019. In 2020, fueled by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, it reached an all-time high of $4.1 billion, more than double its value in 2016 and a 116.5% increase over 2019. The highest share (42.4%) of support for human resources for health-related activities has been directed towards training. Since the adoption of the Global Strategy, donor resources for health workforce-related activities have on average increased by 13.3% compared to 16.0% from 2000 through 2015. For 47 countries identified by the WHO as having severe workforce shortages, the availability of donor resources remains modest. CONCLUSIONS: Since 2016, donor support for health workforce-related activities has increased. However, there are lingering concerns related to the short-term nature of activities that donor funding supports and its viability for creating sustainable health systems.
BACKGROUND: Human resources for health (HRH) include a range of occupations that aim to promote or improve human health. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the WHO Health Workforce 2030 strategy have drawn attention to the importance of HRH for achieving policy priorities such as universal health coverage (UHC). Although previous research has found substantial global disparities in HRH, the absence of comparable cross-national estimates of existing workforces has hindered efforts to quantify workforce requirements to meet health system goals. We aimed to use comparable and standardised data sources to estimate HRH densities globally, and to examine the relationship between a subset of HRH cadres and UHC effective coverage performance. METHODS: Through the International Labour Organization and Global Health Data Exchange databases, we identified 1404 country-years of data from labour force surveys and 69 country-years of census data, with detailed microdata on health-related employment. From the WHO National Health Workforce Accounts, we identified 2950 country-years of data. We mapped data from all occupational coding systems to the International Standard Classification of Occupations 1988 (ISCO-88), allowing for standardised estimation of densities for 16 categories of health workers across the full time series. Using data from 1990 to 2019 for 196 of 204 countries and territories, covering seven Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study (GBD) super-regions and 21 regions, we applied spatiotemporal Gaussian process regression (ST-GPR) to model HRH densities from 1990 to 2019 for all countries and territories. We used stochastic frontier meta-regression to model the relationship between the UHC effective coverage index and densities for the four categories of health workers enumerated in SDG indicator 3.c.1 pertaining to HRH: physicians, nurses and midwives, dentistry personnel, and pharmaceutical personnel. We identified minimum workforce density thresholds required to meet a specified target of 80 out of 100 on the UHC effective coverage index, and quantified national shortages with respect to those minimum thresholds. FINDINGS: We estimated that, in 2019, the world had 104·0 million (95% uncertainty interval 83·5-128·0) health workers, including 12·8 million (9·7-16·6) physicians, 29·8 million (23·3-37·7) nurses and midwives, 4·6 million (3·6-6·0) dentistry personnel, and 5·2 million (4·0-6·7) pharmaceutical personnel. We calculated a global physician density of 16·7 (12·6-21·6) per 10 000 population, and a nurse and midwife density of 38·6 (30·1-48·8) per 10 000 population. We found the GBD super-regions of sub-Saharan Africa, south Asia, and north Africa and the Middle East had the lowest HRH densities. To reach 80 out of 100 on the UHC effective coverage index, we estimated that, per 10 000 population, at least 20·7 physicians, 70·6 nurses and midwives, 8·2 dentistry personnel, and 9·4 pharmaceutical personnel would be needed. In total, the 2019 national health workforces fell short of these minimum thresholds by 6·4 million physicians, 30·6 million nurses and midwives, 3·3 million dentistry personnel, and 2·9 million pharmaceutical personnel. INTERPRETATION: Considerable expansion of the world's health workforce is needed to achieve high levels of UHC effective coverage. The largest shortages are in low-income settings, highlighting the need for increased financing and coordination to train, employ, and retain human resources in the health sector. Actual HRH shortages might be larger than estimated because minimum thresholds for each cadre of health workers are benchmarked on health systems that most efficiently translate human resources into UHC attainment. FUNDING: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
BACKGROUND: The global spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus highlights both the importance of frontline healthcare workers (HCW) in pandemic response and their heightened vulnerability during infectious disease outbreaks. Adequate preparation, including the development of human resources for health (HRH) is essential to an effective response. ICAP at Columbia University (ICAP) partnered with Resolve to Save Lives and MOHs to design an emergency training initiative for frontline HCW in 11 African countries, using a competency-based backward-design approach and tailoring training delivery and health facility selection based on country context, location and known COVID-19 community transmission. METHODS: Pre- and post-test assessments were conducted on participants completing the COVID-19 training. Parametric and non-parametric methods were used to examine average individual-level changes from pre- to post-test, and compare performance between countries, cadres, sex and facility types. A post-evaluation online training survey using Qualtrics was distributed to assess participants' satisfaction and explore training relevance and impact on their ability to address COVID-19 in their facilities and communities. RESULTS: A total of 8797 HCW at 945 health facilities were trained between June 2020 and October 2020. Training duration ranged from 1 to 8 days (median: 3 days) and consisted of in person, virtual or self guided training. Of the 8105 (92%) HCW working at health facilities, the majority (62%) worked at secondary level facilities as these were the HF targeted for COVID-19 patients. Paired pre- and post-test results were available for 2370 (25%) trainees, and 1768 (18%) participants completed the post-evaluation training survey. On average, participants increased their pre- to post-test scores by 15 percentage points (95% CI 0.14, 0.15). While confidence in their ability to manage COVID-19 was high following the training, respondents reported that lack of access to testing kits (55%) and PPE (50%), limited space in the facility to isolate patients (45%), and understaffing (39%) were major barriers. CONCLUSION: Ongoing investment in health systems and focused attention to health workforce capacity building is critical to outbreak response. Successful implementation of an emergency response training such as this short-term IPC training initiative in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, requires speed, rigor and flexibility of its design and delivery while building on pre-existing systems, resources, and partnerships.
In 1995, Pacific Health Ministers articulated their vision of a healthy Pacific as 'a place where children are nurtured in body and mind; environments invite learning and leisure; people work and age with dignity; where ecological balance is a source of pride; and where the ocean is protected.' Central to this vision is the achievement of universal health coverage (UHC). To provide an indication of the UHC-related priorities of Pacific health authorities and promote alignment of domestic and international investments in health sector development, we thematically analyzed the discussion, resolutions, and recommendations from 5 years (2015-2020) of senior-level Pacific health meetings. Five main themes emerged: (i) the Healthy Islands vision has (and continues to have) a unifying influence on action for UHC; (ii) adoption of appropriate service delivery models that support integrated primary health care at the community level are needed; (iii) human resources for health are critical if efforts to achieve UHC are to be successful; (iv) access to reliable health information is core to health sector improvement; and (v) while not a panacea for all challenges, digital health offers many opportunities. Small and isolated populations, chronic workforce limitations, weak governance arrangements, ageing and inadequate health facilities, and supply chain and logistics difficulties (among other issues) interact to challenge primary health care delivery across the Pacific Islands. We found evidence that the Healthy Islands vision is a tool that garners support for UHC; however, to realize the vision, a realistic understanding of needed political, human resource, and economic investments is required. The significant disruptive effect of COVID-19 and the uncertainty it brings for implementation of the medium- to long-term health development agenda raises concern that progress may stagnate or retreat.
OBJECTIVE: We aimed to rapidly assess the health system impact of COVID-19 in the urban slums of Bangladesh. DESIGN: Setting and participantsA cross-sectional survey among 476 households was conducted during October-December 2020 in five selected urban slums of Dhaka North, Dhaka South and Gazipur City Corporation. In-depth interviews with purposively selected 22 slum dwellers and key informant interviews with 16 local healthcare providers and four policymakers and technical experts were also conducted. OUTCOME MEASURES: Percentage of people suffering from general illness, percentage of people suffering from chronic illness, percentage of people seeking healthcare, percentage of people seeking maternal care, health system challenges resulting from COVID-19. RESULTS: About 12% of members suffered from general illness and 25% reported chronic illness. Over 80% sought healthcare and the majority sought care from informal healthcare providers. 39% of the recently delivered women sought healthcare in 3 months preceding the survey. An overall reduction in healthcare use was reported during the lockdown period compared with prepandemic time. Mismanagement and inefficient use of resources were reported as challenges of health financing during the pandemic. Health information sharing was inadequate at the urban slums, resulting from the lack of community and stakeholder engagement (51% received COVID-19-related information, 49% of respondents knew about the national hotline number for COVID-19 treatment). Shortage of human resources for health was reported to be acute during the pandemic, resulting from the shortage of specialist doctors and uneven distribution of health workforce. COVID-19 test was inadequate due to the lack of adequate test facilities and stigma associated with COVID-19. Lack of strong leadership and stakeholder engagement was seen as the barriers to effective pandemic management. CONCLUSION: The findings of the current study are expected to support the government in tailoring interventions and allocating resources more efficiently and timely during a pandemic.
Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, health workforces (HWF) in small countries were faced with huge demands, having to address challenges related to a relatively limited capacity in human resources for health. The need to take small-country specificities into account in planning effective HRH policy responses continues to be highly relevant. The main objectives of the Meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Human Resources for Health in Small Countries of the WHO European Region were to: share information and provide a regional update on policy tools and resources for HWF challenges in a webinar forum open to various WHO networks;understand the impact of the pandemic on HRH planning and development (member-country experiences, and national HWF priorities for the next 2–3 years);discuss the Group’s action plan for 2022–2023 and agree on priorities;and hold on-line consultations with three sub-sets of small countries (island countries, continental countries and city-states). The meeting revealed the importance of collaborative working – both within the health sector and between the health and non-health sectors – to improve health systems in small countries and concluded in proposing areas in which small countries could be supported to this end.
The coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has triggered a public health and economic crisis in both high and low resource settings since the beginning of 2020. With the first case being discovered on 12th March 2020, Kenya has responded using both health and non-health strategies to mitigate the direct and indirect impact of the disease on its population. However, this has had both positive and negative implications for the country's overall health system. This paper aimed to understand the pandemic's impact and develop lessons for future response by identifying the key challenges and opportunities Kenya faced during the pandemic. We conducted a qualitative study with 15 key informants, purposefully sampled for in-depth interviews from September 2020 to February 2021. We conducted direct content analysis of the transcripts to understand the stakeholder's views and perceptions of how COVID-19 has affected the Kenyan healthcare system. The majority of the respondents noted that Kenya's initial response was relatively good, especially in controlling the pandemic with the resources it had at the time. This included relaying information to citizens, creating technical working groups and fostering multisectoral collaboration. However, concerns were raised regarding service disruption and impact on reproductive health, HIV, TB, and non-communicable diseases services;poor coordination between the national and county governments;shortage of personal protective equipment and testing kits, and strain of human resources for health. Effective pandemic preparedness for future response calls for improved investments across the health system building blocks, including;human resources for health, financing, infrastructure, information, leadership, service delivery and medical products and technologies. These strategies will help build resilient health systems and improve self-reliance, especially for Countries going through transition from donor aid such as Kenya in the event of a pandemic.
The critical role of the health workforce in the function of the health care system is undeniable. In times of disaster and public health emergency, the importance of this valuable resource for the organization multiplies. This scoping review was conducted to identify, analyze, and categorize interventions to improve willingness to work in times of disaster as well as the existing knowledge gaps in the topic. For this purpose, four databases were searched. These included Scopus, PubMed, WOS, and World Health Organization observatory, and they were searched for papers published from July 2000 to September 2020. Studies of the English language that described strategies to improve human resources for health willingness to work during times of disaster/public health emergency were included. Full-text papers were screened by authors and data extraction was done according to self-designed form. Framework analysis identified key interventions based on human resources for health action framework. From 6246 search results, 52 articles were included, a great portion of which was published in 2020 probably due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Northern America was the region with most studies. From 52 included studies, 21 papers have reported the interventions to improve willingness to work and 31 papers have explored factors that affected a willingness to work. The interventions used in the studies were categorized into five themes as Leadership, Partnership, Financing, Education, and Organizational policies. The most and least interventions were financial and partnership respectively. The review identified a wide range of feasible strategies and interventions to improve human resources for health's willingness to work at times of disaster that are expected to be effective. Organizations should let the staff know these decisions and as a necessary step in every organizational intervention remember to evaluate the impacts.
Covid-19 impacted very much the consumer behaviour. With economic instability consumers are experiencing a transformation in behaviour (Seema Mehta et al. ). The consumers are put to financial constraints with a new twist which has healthcare, personal health, and well being concern. Gates  in his research work urged for a `wakeup call' for investments in capabilities, infrastructure and human resources for health, surveillance and management of deadly epidemic outbreaks. Covid-19 has disturbed the consumer habits of buying and shopping through lock down and physical distance (Sheth ). Changing consumer demographics, innovative technology and services gave room for birth for new habits, but the consumers have learned cope with work schedule, leisure and education boundaries. Covid-19 has brought geopolitical tensions which drastically impacted rationalist consumer behaviour. It has altered the consumption philosophy and the question before us is to verify whether the consumerism influenced by Covid-19 is going to alter the behaviour. The purpose of present research paper is to measure rank of the buying behaviours, and find factors driving consumer behaviour, social environment driving behaviour and drivers of buying decision process.
The goals of a health workforce system are to develop, deploy and sustain an integrated and collaborative network of health workers that is equipped with the necessary skills, supports, incentives, and resources to provide quality care that meets all population health needs in an acceptable, equitable and cost-effective manner. This requires robust data and evidence. A key problem in Canada is that it lags behind comparable OECD countries in terms of health workforce data and digital analytics. As a result, health workforce planning here is ad hoc, sporadic, and siloed by profession or jurisdiction, generating significant costs and inefficiencies for all involved. Health workers in Canada account for more than 10% of all employed Canadians and over 2/3 of all health care spending which amounted to $175 billion in 2019, or nearly 8% of Canada’s total GDP.[i]Recognizing these facts, supporting strategic health workforce planning, policy and management ought to be key priorities for federal and provincial/territorial governments and other health care organizations. Across all the different stakeholders that make up the complex adaptive health workforce system in Canada, we lack a centralized and coordinated health workforce data, analytics, and strategic planning infrastructure, a neglect that has been readily acknowledged for over a decade. The significant gaps in our knowledge about the health workforce have been exposed during the COVID-19 pandemic causing critical risks for planners to manage during a health crisis. The time is ripe for the federal government to take on a coordinating leadership role to enhance the data infrastructure that provinces, territories, regions, and training programs need to better plan for and support the health workforce. Efforts should centre on three key elements that will improve data infrastructure, bolster knowledge creation, and inform decision-making activities: * A new data standard and enhanced health workforce data collection across all stakeholders * More timely, accessible, interactive, and fit-for-purpose decision support tools * Capacity building in health workforce data analytics, digital tool design, policy analysis and management science. This vision requires an enhanced federal government role to contribute resources to coordinate the collection of accurate, standardized, and more complete health workforce data to support analysis across occupations, sectors, and jurisdictions, with links to relevant patient information, healthcare utilization and outcome data, for more strategic fit-for-purpose planning at the provincial, territorial, regional, and training program levels. In this paper, a proposed vision for enhanced federal support to data-driven and evidence informed health workforce planning, policy and management is presented. First, two data infrastructure and capacity building recommendations include: * the federal government should create through a specially earmarked contribution agreement with the Canadian Institute for Health Information a Canadian Health Workforce Initiative dedicated to the necessary enhancement of standardized health workforce data purpose built for strategic planning purposes and associated decision-making tools for targeted planning. * In addition to the need to build better data, digital tools, and decision-support infrastructure, there is a parallel need to build the human resources capacity for health workforce analytics. Through a special CIHR-administered fund to build health workforce research capacity, this could include a Strategic Training Investment in Health Workforce Research and a complementary Signature initiative to fund integrated research projects that cut across the existing Scientific Institutes. Building on these two necessary but insufficient building blocks, three options for a coordinating pan Canadian health workforce organization could include one of the following: * The federal government could create a dedicated Health Workforce Agency of Canada with an explicit mandate to enhance existing health workforce da a infrastructure and decision-support tools for strategic planning, policy, and management across Canada. * The federal government could support through a contribution agreement the creation of an arm’s length, not-for-profit organization, Canadian Partnership for Health Workforce, as a steward of a renewed health workforce strategy and to provide health labour market information, training, and management of human resources in the health sector, including support for recruitment and retention. * The federal government could support the creation of a more robust, transparent, and accessible secretariate for a Council on Health Workforce, Canada to improve data and decision-making infrastructures, bolster knowledge creation through dedicated funding and policy to inform decision-making and collaborate on topics of mutual interest. Because of the importance of the health workforce to Canada’s economy and pandemic recovery, a sizeable and sustained investment over the course of at least 10 years is needed to build the necessary infrastructure for better decision-making. In addition to building a more robust health system for Canada’s post pandemic recovery, these actions would align with the World Health Organization’s Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health (2016) which encourages all countries (including Canada) by 2030 to have institutional mechanisms in place to effectively steer and coordinate an inter-sectoral health workforce agenda and established mechanisms for HRH data sharing through national health workforce accounts. [i] In 2019, healthcare constituted 11.5% of GDP. Although the data are not readily available for the full costs of the health workforce, it is generally accepted that approximately 70% of health care costs are the costs of labour;70% of 11.5 is 8.05.
Background Healthcare decision-makers need comprehensive evidence to mitigate surges in the demand for human resources for health (HRH) during infectious disease outbreaks, in terms of both short- and longer-term impacts. This study aimed to assess the state of the evidence to address HRH surge capacity during COVID-19 and other outbreaks of global significance in the 21st century. Methods We systematically searched eight bibliographic databases to extract primary research articles published between 01/2000-06/2020, capturing temporal changes in HRH requirements and responses surrounding viral respiratory infection pandemics. A systems approach was used, considering providers in hospitals, out-of-hospital systems, emergency medical services, and public health. We narratively synthesized the evidence following the PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses) standard. Results Of the 1,155 retrieved records, 16 studies met our inclusion criteria;of these, 5 focused on COVID-19, 3 on H1N1, and 8 on a hypothetical pandemic. Different training, mobilization, and redeployment options to address pandemic-time health system capacity were assessed. Few governance scenarios drew on observational HRH data allowing for comparability across contexts. Notable evidence gaps included occupational and psychosocial factors affecting healthcare workers' absenteeism and risk of burnout, gendered considerations of HRH capacity, evaluations in low- and lower-middle income countries, and policy-actionable assessments to inform post-pandemic recovery and sustainability of services for noncommunicable disease management. Conclusions This research emphasized the critical need for timely, internationally comparable, and equity-informative HRH data and research to enhance preparedness, response, and recovery policies for this and future pandemics. Full paper is available at: https://doi.org/10.1002/hpm.3137 Key messages The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the critical need for enhanced health workforce data and research, including better tracking of demographics, exposures, infections and deaths of health workers. Although women comprise 70% of the health workforce in many countries, gender‐blindness persists in the global literature on health workforce research and governance in public health emergencies./bodyt