A novel analytical framework could help to strengthen health systems in post-conflict countries

December 20, 2011, Public Library of Science

A novel analytical framework could help to strengthen health systems in post-conflict countries

An analytical framework that gives equal focus to the production, deployment, and retention of could help to strengthen and develop health systems in post-conflict countries, such as Afghanistan, the , and Cambodia. These are the conclusions of a Policy Forum article in this week's .

Noriko Fujita, Mari Nagai, and Hidechika Akashi from the National Center for Global Health and Medicine in Tokyo, Japan and Anthony Zwi from the School of Social Science and International Studies at The University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia argue that efforts of development partners and governments typically concentrate on some components of the human resource system, usually and in-service training for health workers, while neglecting other important elements and the essential links between them.

However, innovations that build on and support link across different components of the human resource system are more effective, as seen in the authors' description of the recruitment and contracting of local students for deployment in Afghanistan and Cambodia. Furthermore, balancing emphasis on quantity and quality of human resources is difficult without considering other contextual factors that affect the whole health system, such as the reforms to the health sector and education in Cambodia, say the authors.

According to the authors, national Ministries of Health and related ministries typically have limited capacity while external agencies bring in significant resources along with their own agendas. However, coordination mechanisms that involve all players are key to reconstructing, developing, and monitoring the human resource system such as those that occurred with the Human Resource Task Force in Afghanistan and the engagement of national stakeholders in DR Congo.

The authors call their analytical framework a "house model" and conclude: "A meaningful, comprehensive, and visual framework that is easy to understand and identifies key components of the human resources system is of value."

"While the 'house model' contains elements similar to the World Health Organization [Human Resources for Health] Action Framework, some functions are extracted in order to draw more attention to them. Issues such as the legal and regulatory framework, coordination, and monitoring are often neglected. We also place particular emphasis on the linkages among elements by highlighting some core functions of management (production deployment-retention), or by separating the foundation components (policy and planning, finances, legal) as primarily the responsibility of the government."

Explore further: Framework convention on global health needed

More information: Fujita N, Zwi AB, Nagai M, Akashi H (2011) A Comprehensive Framework for Human Resources for Health System Development in Fragile and Post-Conflict States. PLoS Med 8(12): e1001146. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001146

Related Stories

Framework convention on global health needed

May 11, 2011
In this week's PLoS Medicine, Lawrence Gostin from Georgetown University, Washington DC, and colleagues argue that a global health agreement—such as a Framework Convention on Global Health—is needed and would inform ...

Migration an overlooked health policy issue: New series

May 24, 2011
If internal and international migrants comprised a nation, it would be the third most populous country in the world, just after China and India. Thus, there can be little doubt that population mobility is among the leading ...

Recommended for you

Number of older people with four or more diseases will double by 2035, say researchers

January 23, 2018
A study published today in Age and Ageing, the scientific journal of the British Geriatrics Society, reports that the number of older people diagnosed with four or more diseases will double between 2015 and 2035. A third ...

Placental accumulation of flame retardant chemical alters serotonin production in rats

January 22, 2018
A North Carolina State University-led research team has shown a connection between exposure to a widely used flame retardant chemical mixture and disruption of normal placental function in rats, leading to altered production ...

Marijuana use does not lower chances of getting pregnant

January 22, 2018
Marijuana use—by either men or women—does not appear to lower a couple's chances of getting pregnant, according to a new study led by Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH) researchers.

Women run faster after taking newly developed supplement, study finds

January 19, 2018
A new study found that women who took a specially prepared blend of minerals and nutrients for a month saw their 3-mile run times drop by almost a minute.

Americans are getting more sleep

January 19, 2018
Although more than one in three Americans still don't get enough sleep, a new analysis shows first signs of success in the fight for more shut eye. According to data from 181,335 respondents aged 15 and older who participated ...

Wine is good for you—to a point

January 18, 2018
The Mediterranean diet has become synonymous with healthy eating, but there's one thing in it that stands out: It's cool to drink wine.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.