IHSJ Issue: Health Worker Crisis

Currently, the world has a grossly insufficient number of health care workers to address the health needs of the populations in resource poor settings. The IHSJ believes that solutions to this crisis exist, and is working with a myriad of partners (including Health GAP, Physicians for Human Rights, and the WHO) to develop short and long term strategies to strengthen health systems.

More funding, specifically to adequately train, compensate and retain health professionals in the public sector is needed. The IHSJ has helped to craft the African Health Capacity Investment Act (subsequently introduced by Senators Richard Durbin and Norm Coleman in the US Senate, and by Congresswoman Barbara Lee in the US House of Representatives). In addition, the IHSJ continues to lead the charge for training and monetary compensation for community health workers, many of whom have been asked to volunteer their services in public health programs. Our advocacy has helped place language for paid community health workers in several bills in the United States Congress.  

Lastly, in order to help alleviate the consequences of the dire healthcare worker shortages around the globe, the IHSJ is collaborating with other NGOs and international organizations to study the feasibility of shifting some of the workload from formally trained health professionals to less-specialized or lay health workers (task shifting).

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