Innovations for equity

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Imaging Mothers as Role Models: The making of the FHS Nigeria flyer

In Research communications, Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 2:05 pm


Future Health Systems Consortium has invested in communications – to ensure that decision makers are aware of our work and encourage its uptake into policy and practice.

It sounds simple, but actually we have learnt a lot over the years while working together, including about the passion and sensitivities of communities and governments regarding communication materials. In Nigeria, we have been using the consortium flyer with an image of a Chinese woman and her child to advertise the partnership. Often it gave us an opportunity to talk about the international nature of the work and what it means to work in partnership. But it tended to attract a plethora of comments from Nigerian stakeholders. Such comments have stimulated the thought of FHS country team to develop a flyer of our own – one that would be meaningful to stakeholders in the sense that it reflects the culture and the communities we are working with. Read the rest of this entry »

Sarah Arnquist is at it again!

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 1:33 pm

Just a quick blog to thank  Sarah Arnquist for featuring us on the Global Health Hub. She quotes the piece by Peter and suggests that those of you following the symposium on Twitter should follow @KarenGrepin and @MSHHealthImpact. We’ll check them out…

Building Health Policy and Systems Research Capacity

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 11:34 am


On Monday conference participants at the Global Symposium gathered to explore how we can work together to understand and increase capacity for undertaking and utilising Health Policy and Systems Research. This is a priority area if we are serious about improving systems and service delivery for the people who need it the most.

You can download the main messages from the satellite below but in short we need to:

  • Forcefully make the argument that health policy and systems research is important
  • Work in multi-stakeholder partnerships to support country-driven research agendas, evaluate the evidence and get this work into policy and practice
  • Push governments and other funders to invest in this area, particularly in national research organisations over the longer term
  • Make sure that health policy and systems research is harmonized and aligned with the national agenda
  • Encourage further exploration of methodologies for this work
  • Support and nurture young researchers
  • Develop cross-country lesson learning and collaboration

>>Health Policy and Systems Research main messages

Less lecturing, more listening!

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 6:55 am
The First Health Systems Research Conference – my expectations: Less lecturing, more listening, but is it happening? So far there have been limited voices from low income countries. Shall we be heard or it is another opportunity to listen, and be told of dos and don’ts? In Uganda, the operational units are health units, hospitals, health sub districts and districts. Have I heard anybody speak of how to make them more functional within a limited resource base? No, but I am waiting!!! Of course there is talk of funding for health systems, and this should be a focus of donors. I say, no, this should be what we demand from our governments. There is talk of technology, etc. Well, small simple things first for me: sanitation, housing, education, food, immunisation, and simple preventive knowledge. Okay, I am still here till end of week, to learn about health systems research. I will wait and see if, as I leave, I will know how to deliver services to the poorest in the remotest parts of my home district, or indeed how to measure health systems. Time will tell. But give people a voice, the people who live in the systems that we are trying to study.

Beyond Resource Mobilisation

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 16, 2010 at 11:10 pm


Transmitting the needs of the poor to the ears of the policymaker is not as easy as it seems.  The poor themselves do not fully know what causes their ill health.  They and their doctors frame the problem in medical terms.  Epidemiologists multiply case counts into “burden”.  Economists prioritize disease burdens according to the costs of the medical solution.  Advocates use photo journals, tales of woe, body counts and whatever cost-effectiveness estimates they can get their hands on to elbow their way into the hearts and minds of the global policymakers, government officials, and donors. Read the rest of this entry »

Understanding and Intervening in Informal Markets in Health

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Health Markets, Uncategorized on November 16, 2010 at 10:28 pm


David Peters chairing the sessionOver the last few years we’ve done a lot of research to explore interventions that might make health markets work better for poor people. This work is premised on the understanding that markets for health-related goods and services are widespread and in many developing countries poor people seek some proportion of their health care in these markets.

Today’s session at the Global Symposium was structured around a series of 5 minute “lightening” presentations which gave an overview of the evidence and provided feedback on research from Bangladesh, Nigeria, Uganda and India.

You can view the slides from all of the speakers below.

Meeting the public of public health

In Uncategorized on November 16, 2010 at 9:24 am
Global symposium stand 1

Opening up the Future Health Systems stand


Global Symposium stand 2

Jan and Daniela did a wonderful job in organising and decorating


Global Symposium stand 3

Things soon got a little busier


Global Symposium stand 4

Come and see us whilst stocks last!

Other blogs and websites on the Global Symposium

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 15, 2010 at 10:27 pm


The conference starts tomorrow but things are already hotting up here in Montreux – despite the heavy rain. The market place is taking shape and a number of sattelite sessions were held today.

Even if you can’t attend there are ways to keep in touch with sessions and debates. The conference organisers have gone to a lot of effort to reach out to those people who are unable to get here. The website is hosting a blog, “to raise awareness, facilitate dialogue and stimulate discussion within the public health community on issues related to creating better health systems.” It is worth reading.

We were pleased to see the post from David Bishai featured on the Global Health hub in a piece by Sarah Arnquist. We’ll be looking out for other online coverage.

A “disease systems” symposium?

In Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, Uncategorized on November 15, 2010 at 9:19 am


David BishaiThis symposium is unique because it’s not about one disease.  In the land of global health, this is going to provoke suspicion and a sense that all this attention may be threatening resources and taking away the limelight from “my disease”.  In sober moments everyone realizes that nobody’s disease can be properly addressed without a strong health system.  But the logical error that plagues us all began when we framed global health as a problem of “diseases” and the solutions as “disease control”.  Although it is billed as a health systems symposium, I am afraid the week will be consumed with concerns about human activity that is fundamentally reactive and curative.  This is really a “disease systems” symposium.  Read the rest of this entry »

Beyond Scaling Up: What’s it all about?

In Uncategorized on November 10, 2010 at 3:46 pm


A typical hospital sceneOn the 18 November, at the Global Symposium, we will be running a session entitled “Beyond Scaling Up”. This session will present findings and conclusions of a stream of work jointly organised by the Future Health Systems Consortium and the STEPS Centre.

The session will explore lessons from implementing large scale changes to health systems aimed at increasing access to important health services, particularly by the poor. These will include a study of the experience of a large donor-funded project for strengthening primary health care services in Northern Nigeria, the experience of the Ministry of Health of Brazil in extending a decentralised, rights-based health system to meet the special needs of indigenous people and the Chinese experience with the management of health system reform in the context of rapid economic and social change. Read the rest of this entry »