Strengthening systems for better health
Strong health systems are critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and ensuring good standards of health and equitable health outcomes for all. Much of the burden of disease and premature deaths in developing countries can be prevented through the effective delivery of health services. Yet many governments still struggle to deliver high-quality health services that can provide prevention, care and treatment when needed and at an affordable cost.
We work in partnership with governments and non-government providers to build effective, responsive, fair and efficient health systems, to provide accessible services for growing populations.
We aim to ensure:
- services are safe, sensitive to the needs of women and other disadvantaged populations, and equitably delivered
- staff are well-trained, motivated and available to deliver services
- health information systems are effective and provide reliable information on health indicators and system performance
- equitable access to essential medicine, vaccines and technologies
- financial systems are transparent, efficient and accountable, with good links between planning, budgeting and the allocation of resources
- strong leadership and governance to oversee the health system.
We work at all levels within the system – from strengthening the quality of primary health care services in rural areas to the development of evidence-based policies, plans and budgets at national level. Our programmes work across sectors, making links between health systems and investments in nutrition, water, sanitation, hygiene and education.
We advise governments on how best to resource the delivery of health care, whether through tax-based systems, health insurance or by harnessing the potential of the private sector. We work with governments to determine how they can achieve greater equity of health outcomes. We strengthen procurement and distribution systems to deliver services to those in need, and information systems to facilitate decision-making using the best evidence. Our experts work to ensure that health services are sufficiently staffed with motivated, skilled health professionals who can provide leadership on the delivery of good-quality care for all.