The Knowledge library

Knowledge Library

Ramping Up Public Health Supply Chain Workforce Management Skills: Lessons Learned in Latin America and the Caribbean

In response to the evident need for building up the supply chain management workforce, the USAID Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean provided financial support to CapacityPlus to enhance capacities in Central American countries. The project coordinated a regional HIV/AIDS Commodity Security Workshop to share and apply lessons learned from USAID’s ten-year Latin American contraceptive security work and from specific health workforce and supply chain work already done in the region. Additionally, workshops focusing on supply chain workforce motivation and quality of services were held in the Dominican Republic and El Salvador. Building on the action plans developed at its workshop, El Salvador sought to delve more deeply into ways to systematically improve the quality of services through supportive supervision. This technical report reviews the actions taken and lessons learned in strengthening and professionalizing the supply chain workforce.

Identifying Approaches and Tools for Evaluating Community-Based Medical Education Programmes in Africa

The PEPFAR-funded Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI) aims to support
medical education and research in sub-Saharan African institutions. The intention is to increase the quantity, quality, and retention of graduates with specific skills addressing the health needs of their populations. While many MEPI programs include elements of community-based education (CBE), such as community placements, clinical rotations in underserved locations, community medicine, or primary health care, the challenge identified by MEPI-supported schools was the need for appropriate approaches and tools to evaluate these activities. This article, co-authored by Rebecca Bailey and Heather Ross of CapacityPlus, outlines the process of identifying tools that, with modification, could assist in the evaluation of CBE programs in participating MEPI schools.

Strengthening the Supply Chain Management Workforce in Namibia: Applying the WISN Method to Estimate Staffing Needs

People that Deliver is a global initiative that aims to address human resources inefficiencies in the public health supply chain. With the challenges faced in Namibia, the Ministry of Health and Social Services requested that People that Deliver pilot, with support from CapacityPlus, an integrated set of interventions to strengthen the supply chain management workforce. One of these interventions was to estimate the types and numbers of supply chain workers needed at central and regional medical stores based on the estimated workload. The World Health Organization’s Workload Indicators of Staffing Needs (WISN) tool was used to estimate the required number of pharmacists, pharmacist assistants, and clerks required at the national and regional levels of the supply chain. The findings, which indicated shortages in all three cadres of supply chain personnel, are presented in this report.

Evaluating Community-Based Medical Education Programmes in Africa: A Workshop Report

PEPFAR's Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI) supports medical schools in Africa to increase the capacity and quality of medical education, improve retention of graduates, and promote regionally relevant research. Many MEPI programmes include elements of community-based education (CBE) such as: community placements; clinical rotations in underserved locations, community medicine, or primary health; situational analyses; or student-led research.CapacityPlus and the MEPI Coordinating Center conducted a workshop to share good practices for CBE evaluation, identify approaches that can be used for CBE evaluation in the African context, and strengthen a network of CBE collaborators.This report describes key insights from the workshop, and highlights plans for CBE evaluation among the MEPI institutions.This workshop clearly demonstrated the widespread interest in improving CBE evaluation efforts and a need to develop, implement, and disseminate rigorous approaches and tools relevant to the African context.

Health Workforce Education: Investing in the Next Generation of Health Workers

On April 14, 2015, CapacityPlus and SHOPS presented a webinar on innovative investment options for health workforce education and training. Over 40 participants joined in the session, which offered presentations and question-and-answer sessions with participants engaging both the speakers and each other. Access a recording of the webinar and view presentation slides. Read more »

Promoting Gender Equality in the Health Workforce: An Advocacy Tool

Health workforce leaders may not be aware of the ways in which gender discrimination impedes efforts to develop, efficiently deploy, and fairly compensate their workforce. This can result in maldistribution, absenteeism, and a limited pool of motivated health workers, which can negatively impact the provision of health care. This advocacy tool helps users to understand how common forms of gender inequalities and discrimination can negatively affect the health workforce; assess whether health workers may be experiencing one or more forms of discrimination; and successfully advocate and take action through policy-making and improved management to reduce gender discrimination and build a more motivated and effective workforce to serve the population’s family planning, reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, and other primary health care needs.

Use of an Interactive Voice Response System to Deliver Refresher Training in Senegal: Findings from Pilot Implementation and Assessment

In-service training reinforces and updates health workers’ knowledge, but it is often expensive and requires providers to leave their posts. Interactive voice response (IVR) is a technology—possible with any type of phone—that delivers information via audio recordings and allows users to provide feedback by pressing a number key. CapacityPlus developed, deployed, and assessed an innovative mLearning system that used a combination of IVR and SMS text messaging to deliver refresher training to family planning providers in Senegal, focusing on management of contraceptive side effects and counseling to dispel misconceptions. The pilot application among 20 midwives, nurses, nursing assistants, and health agents took place in two districts in Thiès Region of Senegal. Evaluation findings showed that an mLearning system that delivers refresher training to family planning providers via simple mobile phones using IVR and SMS text is appropriate, feasible, acceptable, and associated with sustained gains in knowledge.

The HRH Effort Index: New Indicators to Help Systems Strengthening

CapacityPlus’s Human Resources for Health (HRH) Effort Index is a tool to obtain HRH indicators contributing to health systems strengthening. Shared at the Global Health Mini-University in Washington, DC, on March 2, 2015, this presentation gives an overview of the tool and findings from pilot testing in Kenya and Nigeria.