Addressing the human resource needs of a Kenyan hospitalEven before the ARV targets had been introduced, there were not enough nurses to provide the quality of care the Director aspired to. The patients had to wait a long time for basic care, and by the time the overworked nurses finally came to the bedside, they were rushed and exhausted. The Director understood why the patients felt neglected and the staff demoralized.Hiring new staff was not an option. A donor-imposed hiring freeze made it impossible to employ any new staff—not just nurses, but other essential employees as well.

MSH works with the Global Drug Facility to help laboratory staff in Congo-Brazzaville improve tuberculosis detection Tuberculosis (TB) is a public health emergency: 8 million people worldwide develop active TB each year. Diagnosing patients with TB, by examining their sputum under the microscope to detect tuberculosis bacteria, is pivotal to the control of this disease. This relatively simple, but labor-intensive laboratory test requires great concentration and attention to detail.

Provincial Planning Coordinating Committees meet monthly to monitor health conditions and review performance throughout the province. {Photo by Steve Sapirie 2004.}Photo by Steve Sapirie 2004.

War and conflict over the past 25 years have had dire consequences for the health of the Afghan people, particularly women and children. The health system was decimated, hospitals and health clinics were destroyed, and many trained health personnel fled the country, all contributing to some of highest infant and maternal mortality rates in the world.