The Coalition Government has already committed to a number of health-focused targets, including addressing the high levels of maternal death in many developing countries. Meeting this and other health commitments means addressing fully the critical shortage of health workers that exists in many developing countries and realising the important role that health workers play throughout the health system and the continuum of care.
A functioning health system in all countries is crucial to ensuring better health, particularly for the most vulnerable, such as women, infants and children. Central to this are the doctors, nurses, midwives, community health workers and other health staff, who promote health and deliver health care services in their communities. Our efforts must ensure there are adequate numbers of appropriately trained, deployed, supported and motivated health workers, who are equipped with the right skills, to meet the health needs of all populations. This is particularly critical in sub-Saharan Africa and fragile contexts where high levels of infant, child and maternal mortality remain a cause for global concern.
Download Putting Health Workers At the Heart of the MDGs to read more about the health worker crisis, the list of recommendations that we have made to the Coalition Government as well as the commitments that UK civil society has made to tackle the human resources for health crisis. We’re currently waiting for a response to the briefing from Andrew Mitchell, Secretary of State for International Development, and we hope that he will acknowledge the impact of the healthworker crisis and announce concrete steps to address it.