Online Program

Strengthening health systems to support and strengthen health services delivery

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 10:30 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.

Karen Cavanaugh, Bureau for Global Health, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Arlington, VA

Among the goals the USG seeks to achieve through our global health programming are an end to preventable maternal and child deaths, an AIDS-free generation, and communities protected from infectious diseases. To achieve these ambitious goals calls for people everywhere to use quality essential health services they need. Yet many partner countries are not able to reliably ensure access to quality essential services for all. Health systems strengthening (HSS) encompasses the strategies, interventions and activities designed to sustainably improve health system performance. This presentation will review what we know about how to strengthen health system performance in low-income countries, through measures that improve financial protection, the use of quality essential services, the equity of population coverage, and the health system’s responsiveness to the people. It will review evidence on approaches that work to improve the functions of health finance, governance, human resources, medicines, information—all of which contribute to improved health services. It will highlight country examples and reflect on what the outbreak of ebola in West Africa has taught us about the importance of health system resilience and the characteristics of resilient health systems. 

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Program planning
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe the role of health systems strengthening in supporting and strengthening health services delivery. Discuss and explain some initiatives undertaken by the United States Government to strengthen service delivery across the world. Explain how strengthening the different building blocks of a health system leads to better response for health crises.

Keyword(s): Health Care Delivery, Health Systems Transformation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As the Director for USAID's Office of Health Systems I am responsible for the overall strategic direction. I have served with USAID since 1997 in many countries leading efforts to strengthen health systems and health services delivery.
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.