Breaking Barriers: Health Workforce Policies for Pandemic Response and Preparedness

September 28, 2021 - 9:00am - 10:15am

COVID-19 has upended health systems worldwide. Now, more than 18 months into the pandemic, health leaders have a clearer perspective of what works and what doesn’t work in pandemic response and preparedness. Governments, ministries of health, and civil society organizations have identified innovative health workforce policies and practices to respond to COVID-19, distribute COVID-19 vaccinations, and continue delivery of essential health services. 

From Africa to Asia, there are valuable lessons to be shared around how a resilient and responsive global health workforce can bolster health systems to restore essential health services and improve pandemic preparedness.

The Frontline Health Workers Coalition and partners sponsored a two-part event series, alongside the 76th UN General Assembly, to convene government leaders and civil society representatives to share their most effective policy wins—and losses—over the last year and a half. Part two of this webinar series featured civil society representatives who share their experiences working with the government to pass and implement innovative health workforce policies. 

Dr. Mirna Montenegro, Director of the Reproductive Health Observatory (El Observatorio en Salud Reproductiva, OSAR), MSH’s implementing partner in Guatemala, shared about her work with the Guatemala Ministry of Health to ensure that essential and respectful maternal health services were provided to indigenous women and adolescents throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. She is continuing her work with the Ministry of Health to guarantee that pregnant women are considered in the country’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign. 

Watch part one, featuring government leaders from different continents here.