142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Integrated needs-based HHR planning for pandemics: Matching provider competencies to service requirements

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 : 5:30 PM - 5:50 PM

Stephen Birch, DPhil , McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Gail Tomblin Murphy, RN, PhD , WHO/PAHO Collaborating Centre on Health Workforce Planning and Research, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada
Adrian MacKenzie , WHO/PAHO Collaborating Centre on Health Workforce Planning and Research, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada
An analytical framework was developed to integrate health services planning with health workforce planning using a population needs based approach and provider competencies.  Building on lessons learned from applications to planning for a variety of health care contexts in multiple countries, the framework was applied to planning surge capacity for an influenza pandemic in Canada at the provincial (Nova Scotia) and sub-provincial (health authority) levels. Data were gathered from administrative sources, health care provider surveys and interdisciplinary clinician panels, and analyzed using professions and services as the unit of analysis to identify potential gaps between service supply and requirements. Analyses suggest that both jurisdictions have health workforces with sufficient training and numbers overall to meet the service requirements of  their populations under various potential pandemic scenarios. This is contingent on the ability to redeploy providers from serving other needs  during the pandemic and using health care providers to the full scope of practice. Largest potential service gaps pertained to making diagnoses, providing a range of pharmacy services, and recommending appropriate in-home supports for patients.  Strengths of the approach identified by decision-makers were the explicit incorporation of measures of population health needs and its capacity to accommodate a wide range of supply and requirement scenarios. This approach offers a flexible tool to guide the alignment of scarce resources across sectors and professions, including the legislated competencies of different provider groups as closely as possible with population health needs. The availability of such tools is particularly important during ‘surges’ in health care needs, such as pandemics.

Learning Areas:

Program planning
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related research
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe the components of the analytical framework presented; discuss potential strategies to better align health system services with population health needs

Keyword(s): Planning, Workforce

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As a co-investigator on the study, I have led the development and application of the analytical framework upon which it is founded and contributed to the communication of its findings to the stakeholders on the study’s steering committees. In addition to this study, I have published extensively in the health economics and health services research fields internationally over the past several decades.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.