Country-Level Action

What’s Really Holding Us Back? Resolving the Health Workforce Crisis

Maurice MiddlebergLately I’ve been thinking about the big picture in the global health workforce crisis. What’s keeping us from getting where we need to be?

On the one hand, we’ve come a long way in just a few years. Since the release of the 2006 World Health Report and the First Global Forum on Human Resources for Health in 2008, we’ve made notable progress:

  • Awareness of the health workforce crisis is now pervasive; this is reflected in high-level declarations of both developing and developed nations.
  • We’ve amassed a large body of knowledge and practical experience.
  • There is emerging consensus on the actions needed on a range of issues, from retention to community health workers to task-shifting.
  • Many countries have developed health workforce strategies.
  • A few countries (Ethiopia’s a great example) have made remarkable progress in expanding access to qualified health workers.

On the other hand, let’s face it: progress has been slow.

Access to health workers with the right skills is still denied to millions of people. We’re not yet where we need to be. What are the root causes of this unsatisfactory progress?

At the core is a failure of implementation. Read more »

Syndicate content