Earlier this month a team from Options attended the Fourth Global Symposium on Health Systems Research, in Vancouver. The theme of the conference was Resilient and responsive health systems for a changing world. The conference brought together researchers, students, practitioners, and policy-makers from around the world to discuss ways to support health systems to absorb unexpected shocks, respond to emerging needs and take advantage of new opportunities.
This was a fantastic opportunity to share our wealth of experiences, innovative practices and lessons learned for building more resilient health systems. We presented several posters and oral presentations on our work in Nepal, India, and Sierra Leone:
- In Learning from the Resilience of Nepal’s Health System following the 2015 Earthquakes, Sagar Dahal from our NHSSP programme, discussed the Ministry of Health's emphasis on coordination of responders and standard guidelines for reconstruction. He highlighted that consolidating the learning from the response remains an important part of developing health system resilience.
- Devjit, who worked on our Nutrition and WASH programme in Odisha, India presented the challenges and lessons learned from the Shakti Varta Participatory Learning and Action intervention with women's self-help groups. This intervention was delivered through government and civil society partnerships. He highlighted how these partnerships extended the reach of the government to remote and difficult to access communities. Early results from this programme show improvements in maternal and newborn care practices and increased awareness of the harm of open defecation.
- Our Gender and Social Inclusion specialist, Deborah Thomas presented on Social Service Units in Nepal that are part of the government response to enabling poor and vulnerable people to access free or subsidised health care. She presented improvements in the accuracy of targeting, accountability and management of the fund allocated to hospitals for this purpose, and good levels of client satisfaction. Key factors that enable SSUs to work effectively include the leadership of the hospital in-charge, the commitment and high quality of service from contracted NGO partners who administer SSUs through a PPP arrangement, and the policy influencing and technical support provided by our technical assistance in their role as knowledge brokers.
We hosted an Options booth in the Marketplace, which provided a connection point to engage with both current and potential partner organisations and programmes and to showcase our work and resources, including the Global MDSR Action Network.
See all our presentations here:
- Health system resilience: Addressing mistrust in Sierra Leone by Sara Nam and Camille Thomas. We are developing a paper based on our work on health systems resilience and mistrust in Sierra Leone – look out for our forthcoming publication. You can also read more about the research here.
- Expanding availability of family planning services in rural Nepal through comprehensive FP events (VSC+) by Dr Rajendra
- Expanding access to Long Acting Reversible contraceptives through visiting providers in rural Nepal by Dr Rajendra
- NEPAL: Integrating gender equality, social inclusion and equity into health systems: Experience and Learning from Nepal by Sitaram Prasai
- INDIA: Health system strengthening to reduce health and nutrition inequities by Deborah Thomas
- NEPAL: The role of One Stop Crisis Management Centres in improving access to quality services and support to gender-based violence survivors through multi-sectoral partnerships and collaborations by Rekha Rana
- NEPAL: Improving access, quality and accountability of health services through social audit: A case study from Nepal by Kumar Upadhyaya
- Factors impacting continuous availability of comprehensive emergency obstetric and neonatal care services in Nepal with a focus on the comprehensive emergency obstetric care fund by Pushpa Chaudhary
- Using sub-national data to inform integrated multi-sectoral system improvements for health and nutrition in Odisha State, India by Sarah Style
- Large Scale Participatory Learning and Action (PLA) with Women’s Self-Help Groups, Delivered through Government and Civil Society Partnerships in Odisha State, India: Challenges and Lessons by Devjit Mittra