Financial Aspects

The Health Workforce in Latin America and the Caribbean An Analysis of Colombia, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay

This study intends to provide an update of the status of the human resources for health (HRH) subsystem in six countries of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC)—Colombia, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay. The study’s discussion centers around five questions: how the health workforce is financed, how it is organized, how it is managed, how it is regulated, and how it performs. Further, the study strives to understand what role, if any, performance management policies and incentives play in these countries’ HRH subsystems.

Tracking Implementation and (Un)intended Consequences: A Process Evaluation of an Innovative Peripheral Health Facility Financing Mechanism in Kenya

In many African countries, user fees have failed to achieve intended access and quality of care improvements. Subsequent user fee reduction or elimination policies have often been poorly planned, without alternative sources of income for facilities. We describe early implementation of an innovative national health financing intervention in Kenya; the health sector services fund (HSSF). [from abstract]

Health Sector Planning and Budgeting in Kenya: Recommendations to Improve Alignment

Kenya, like many developing countries, suffers from a persistent misalignment between policy, planning and budgeting; resulting in a failure of the government to achieve public sector targets and respond to changing population needs. Research conducted by KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme has found that several years after the adoption of these planning and budgeting tools, the desired linkage between policy, planning and resource allocation in the health sector is far from being realised.

Comparative Study on Health Care System Between Myanmar and China According to World Health Organization (WHO)’s Basic Health Blocks

This paper is a comparative analysis between China’s and Myanmar’s health systems, viewed through the WHO’s six building blocs of health systems: service delivery, health workforce, health information, access to essential medicines, health financing, leadership or governance.

Wage-Setting in the Hospital Sector

This paper examines wage setting mechanisms for health workers in hospitals across eight different OECD countries. It describes similarities and differences and how fixed or fluid these approaches have been in recent years through health system reforms, labour market dynamics and economic pressures. [from abstract]

Economic Evaluation of Complex Health System Interventions

The discussion paper provides guidance to those tasked with conducting an economic evaluation of complex health system interventions. The guidance will be an elaboration of existing National guidelines for economic evaluation and serve as a discussion paper to aid investigators conducting economic evaluations of complex health interventions. This paper is intended to be a starting point for heatlh system and policy researchers who wish to understand some of the fundamentals of economic evaluation and its application complex interventions. [from abstract]

Universal Health Coverage Reforms: Implications for the Distribution of the Health Workforce in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

This paper suggests that there are risks associated with health-financing reforms, for the geographical distribution
and performance of the health workforce. These risks require greater attention if poor and rural populations are to benefit from expanded financial protection. [from abstract]

Improving Financial Access to Health Care in the Kisantu District in the Democratic Republic of Congo: Acting Upon Complexity

Comzmercialization of health care has contributed to widen inequities between the rich and the poor, especially in settings with suboptimal regulatory frameworks of the health sector. Poorly regulated fee-for-service payment systems generate inequity and initiate a vicious circle in which access to quality health care gradually deteriorates.

Health Financing in the Republic of Gabon

This is a review of the health financing situation in the Republic of Gabon. The book reviews the situation in the country under the lens of the principles of health financing: revenue mobilization for health, risk pooling, and purchasing services. [from abstract]

Consultation on the Libyan Health Systems: Towards Patient-Centred Services

The extra demand imposed upon the Libyan health services during and after the Libyan revolution in 2011
led the ailing health systems to collapse. To start the planning process to re-engineer the health sector, a conference was held in Tripoli, Libya to facilitate a consultative process between 500 Libyan health experts in order to identify the problems within the Libyan health system and propose potential solutions. This article summarises the 500 health expert recommendations that seized the opportunity to map a modern health systems to take the Libyan health sector into the 21st century.

Arguing for Universal Health Coverage

Intended for those organizations involved in health financing policy debates, this tool articulates the pro-[Universal Health Care] arguments, and presents relevant evidence and examples. It is designed to support policies that promote equity, efficiency and effectiveness, and ensure that the rights of the most vulnerable are not forgotten. [adapted from introduction]

Construction of a Decision Tool to Analyse Local Demand and Local Supply for GP Care Using a Synthetic Estimation Mode

This study addresses the growing academic and policy interest in the appropriate provision of local healthcare services to the healthcare needs of local populations to increase health status and decrease healthcare costs. However, for most local areas information on the demand for primary care and supply is missing.[from abstract]

Removing Financial Barriers to Access Reproductive, Maternal and Newborn Health Services: The Challenges and Policy Implications for Human Resources for Health

This research aimed to assess how policies reducing demand-side barriers to access to health care have affected service delivery with a particular focus on human resources for health using case studies in five countries (Ghana, Nepal, Sierra Leone, Zambia and Zimbabwe). In each the authors reviewed financing and HRH policies, considered the impact financing policy change had made on health service utilization rates, analysed the distribution of health staff and their actual and potential workloads, and compared remuneration terms in the public sectors. [from abstract]

Cost-Effectiveness of a Nurse-Based Intervention (AIMS) to Improve Adherence among HIV-Infected Patients: Design of a Multi-Centre Randomised Controlled Trial

Following a recent review suggesting that cost-effectiveness evaluations of adherence interventions for chronic diseases are rare, and that the methodology of such evaluations is poorly described in the literature, this manuscript presents the study protocol for a multi-centre trial evaluating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of AIMS among a heterogeneous sample of patients. [from abstract]

Deployment of Community Health Workers across Rural Sub-Saharan Africa: Financial Considerations and Operational Assumptions

This paper provides cost guidance for one adaptable configuration of a community health worker subsystem: a provider system housed within a larger primary-health-care system that includes clinics and referral hospitals. Costing is done by function and by local epidemiologic characteristics so that components and assumptions can be easily modified. [adapted from introduction]

Human Resource Implications of Improving Financial Risk Protection for Mothers and Newborns in Zimbabwe

There is a growing consensus that user fees undermine equitable access to essential health care in many low and middle income countries. Changes to fees have major implications for human resources for health (HRH), though the linkages are rarely explicitly examined. This study aimed to examine the inter-linkages in Zimbabwe in order to generate lessons for HRH and fee policies, with particular respect to reproductive, maternal and newborn health. [from abstract]

Cost-Effectiveness Analyses of Training: A Manger's Guide

This article has been written as a guide for program managers who want to recognize and support high quality cost-effetiveness analysis (CEA) of training. It focuses on the approaches and challenges associated with conducting CEA of training in the context of program implementation or rapid expansion of programs. [from author]

Designing and Implementing Health Care Provider Payment Systems: How-To Manuals

This extensive volume shows how revenues, once collected and pooled, can then be channeled through specialized financing arrangements or agencies that have substantial purchasing power; that provide a predictable income stream for providers; and that allow strategic decisions to be made about priorities and spending patterns that would not be possible in the case of direct patient-healer financial transactions. [adapted from preface]

Performance-Based Financing: Just a Donor Fad or a Catalyst Towards Comprehensive Health-Care Reform?

This article outlines the debate on performance-based financing from those who view it as a donor fad with limited potential to improve service delivery to those who suggest that it may contribute to profoundly transforming the public sectors of low-income countries. [adapted from abstract]

Dealing with Difficult Design Decisions: The Experience of an RBF Pilot Program in Haut-Katanga District of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

The Haut-Katanga pilot program and impact evaluation described in this paper is intended to provide rigorous evidence, using a randomized intervention design, of the effects of a performance-based financing strategy in the difficult conditions of rural DRC by analyzing the effects of the strategy on production of health services (quantity and quality), management of the facility and behavior of health staff, and behavior of households.­ [from author]

Australia: The Practice Incentives Program (PIP)

The authors evaluate Autstralia’s Practice Incentives Program which aims to encourage continuing improvements in general practice through financial incentives to support quality care, and improve access and health outcomes for patients. [from introduction]

New Zealand: Primary Health Organization (PHO) Performance Program

This report outlines and evaluates a pay-for-performance program designed to strengthen the role of primary health organizations to focus on population health and health inequality programs, and to address problems of service access and lack of coordination between providers. [adapted from introduction]

Health Workforce Remuneration: Comparing Wage Levels, Ranking, and Dispersion of 16 Occupational Groups in 20 Countries

This article explores remuneration in human resources for health, comparing wage levels, ranking and dispersion of 16 occupational groups in 20 countries is to examine to what extent the wage rankings, standardized wage levels, and wage dispersion are similar between the groups and across the selected countries and what factors can be shown to be related to the differences that emerge. [adapted from abstract]

Provider Payment in Community-Based Health Insurance Schemes in Developing Countries: A Systematic Review

The authors reviewed provider payment methods used in community-based insurance (CBI) in developing countries and their impact on CBI performance. [from abstract]

Scaling up Health Worker Production: The Bottlenecks and Best Buys Approach

This technical brief presents an overview of an approach to help identify critical bottlenecks to providing quality preservice education and prioritize affordable actions for increasing the quantity of graduates while maintaining or improving the quality of education. [from publisher]

Innovative Financing Options for the Preservice Education of Health Professionals

This technical brief presents a summary of the forms of financing proposed or documented through an exploration of innovative solutions for the financing of health worker education. [from publisher]

Economic Evaluation of a Task-Shifting Intervention for Common Mental Disorders in India

The present study evaluates the cost–effectiveness and cost–utility of a trial task shifting approach to mental health services with the hope that the additional resources needed to train, pay and supervise the lay health workers used in the task-shifting approach to the primary care of common mental disorders would promote recovery and reduced disability in a more cost–effective manner than more conventional care. [adapted from author]

Health Worker Perspectives on User Fee Removal in Zambia

Health user fees were introduced in Zambia at the beginning of the 1990s with the objective of improving staff motivation. In 2006, they were removed in view of the poverty levels in the country, the high cost for accessing health services, and the desire to provide universal access. This article examines the perspectives of health workers on the change in policy. [adapted from author]

Impact of Dropout of Female Volunteer Community Health Workers: An Exploration in Dhaka Urban Slums

The study estimates the cost of recruiting and training of community health workers (CHWs), the cost of replacement of CHWs, and forgone services in the community due to CHW dropout. [adapted from abstract]

Narrative Review on the Effect of Economic Downturns on the Nursing Labour Market: Implecations for Policy and Planning

The objectives of this manuscript are to provide an overview of the potential short- and long-run impact of economic downturns on the supply and demand of nurses, and present healthcare decision makers with a framework to enhance their ability to strategically manage their human resources through economic cycles. [from abstract]