Human Resources for Health

The Ministry of Health is committed to improve accessibility and quality of healthcare in the country through a competent and productive health workforce. Strengthening of the Human Resources for Health (HRH) in both public and private sector has been emphasised as one of major activity to be undertaken in the implementation of the Heath Master Plan (HMP) 2007- 2016.

 

Sri Lankaís health sector is facing a number of human resource challenges that are influencing effective delivery of services. These are further complicated by the disease burden and demographic transitions. Although there are the discrepancies between numbers, types, functions, distribution, and quality of health workers, the Sri Lanka health system over the years has been performing well when compared to other developing countries.

 

Strengthening of the Human Resources for Health (HRH) in both public and private sector has been emphasised as one of major activity to be undertaken in the implementation of the Heath Master Plan (HMP) 2007- 2016.

 

A task force and a working group were appointed by the Secretary of Health to carry out this task of developing a strategic plan that would address the issues affecting HRH. This activity was conducted in collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO). In the process of developing the plan the working group organised several consultations which included discussions on HRH issues relevant to decentralization, private sector involvement and HRH in underserved areas.

 

The HRH Strategic Plan is based on a thorough situation analysis, followed by examination of the scale of the problem and the underlying causes and the effects on the delivery of health services, Analysis of issues and challenges in Human resources for Health). Based on the analysis, a draft strategic framework consisting of guiding principles, vision and mission statements and a set of strategic objectives were developed. The Strategic Plan was formulated around 7 interrelated objectives organised around three functional areas.

 

The main document sets out strategies, outcomes and broad activities for 2009 to 2018 to address the human resources problems in the health sector in three functional areas namely HRH planning, HRH production and HRH management. Most of the activities will be implemented within the timeframe of national Health Master Plan (HMP).

 

The Strategic objectives spelt out in the Country Cooperation Strategy envisages to:

*      Rationalize the development, deployment, retention and management of HRH;

*      Support pre-service(basic) and continuing education in clinical, public health and service management competencies;

*      Strengthen the regulatory framework to ensure quality of performance of health staff.

 

It is planned to enhance the quality in basic education for HRH programmes. There will be a review of legislation, regulations and licensing of human resources for health (public and private). In particular, it is planned to augment the health workforce availability and performance in the North and East and in remote areas. WHO will work with professional organizations to strengthen their positive influence in HRH issues.