Lao People's Democratic Republic to Implement Health Worker Retention Tool

CapacityPlus and the World Health Organization (WHO) have begun assisting the Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR) Ministry of Health to prioritize different retention incentive options and determine the most appropriate bundles of interventions to retain rural health workers. This important collaboration follows upon extensive work led by the WHO to help countries implement effective retention strategies—from development to monitoring and evaluation.

Lao flagCapacityPlus, in collaboration with the WHO, will train and assist the Ministry of Health to conduct a rapid discrete choice experiment (DCE) in May using the project’s Rapid DCE Tool. The tool is a powerful, quantitative method used to determine health workers’ preferences regarding different employment options and to predict health workers’ decision-making using hypothetical choice data.

The tool provides country counterparts with step-by-step directions to carry out the DCE and descriptions for each part of the process—from choosing focus cadres to analyzing and interpreting the results. The tool also contains sample formats for each step that can be adapted by the in-country user.

In addition, the tool allows countries to build skills to independently monitor and improve retention interventions by:

  • Maximizing country ownership
  • Increasing host country capacity
  • Reducing reliance on external technical assistance
  • Reducing time and cost.

In Lao PDR, use of the rapid DCE and the associated Open Source costing tool—iHRIS Retain—will help the Ministry of Health and the Government secure the evidence needed to make informed decisions about the health workforce.

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