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Publications

Filtering by Tag: Sara Bennett

A participatory action research approach to strengthening health managers’ capacity at district level in Eastern Uganda

Future Health Systems

Tetui M, Coe A-B, Hurtig A-H, Bennett S, Kiwanuka SN, George A and Ekirapa Kiracho E (2017) A participatory action research approach to strengthening health managers’ capacity at district level in Eastern Uganda, Health Research Policy and Systems, 15(Suppl 2):110, DOI: 10.1186/s12961-017-0273-x

Many approaches to improving health managers’ capacity in poor countries, particularly those pursued by external agencies, employ non-participatory approaches and often seek to circumvent (rather than strengthen) weak public management structures. This limits opportunities for strengthening local health managers’ capacity, improving resource utilisation and enhancing service delivery. This study explored the contribution of a participatory action research approach to strengthening health managers’ capacity in Eastern Uganda.

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Using Theories of Change to inform implementation of health systems research and innovation: experiences of Future Health Systems consortium partners in Bangladesh, India and Uganda

Future Health Systems

Paina L, Wilkinson A, Tetui M, Ekirapa-Kiracho E, Barman D, Ahmed T, Mahmood SS, Bloom G, Knezovich J, George A and Bennett S (2017) Using Theories of Change to inform implementation of health systems research and innovation: experiences of Future Health Systems consortium partners in Bangladesh, India and Uganda, Health Research Policy and Systems, 15(Suppl 2):109, DOI: 10.1186/s12961-017-0272-y

The Theory of Change (ToC) is a management and evaluation tool supporting critical thinking in the design, implementation and evaluation of development programmes. We document the experience of Future Health Systems (FHS) Consortium research teams in Bangladesh, India and Uganda with using ToC. We seek to understand how and why ToCs were applied and to clarify how they facilitate the implementation of iterative intervention designs and stakeholder engagement in health systems research and strengthening.

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Strengthening scaling up through learning from implementation: comparing experiences from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Uganda

Future Health Systems

Bennett S, Mahmood SS, Edward A, Tetui M and Ekirapa-Kiracho E (2017) Strengthening scaling up through learning from implementation: comparing experiences from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Uganda, Health Research Policy and Systems, 15(Suppl 2):108, DOI: 10.1186/s12961-017-0270-0

Many effective innovations and interventions are never effectively scaled up. Implementation research (IR) has the promise of supporting scale-up through enabling rapid learning about the intervention and its fit with the context in which it is implemented. We integrate conceptual frameworks addressing different dimensions of scaling up (specifically, the attributes of the service or innovation being scaled, the actors involved, the context, and the scale-up strategy) and questions commonly addressed by IR (concerning acceptability, appropriateness, adoption, feasibility, fidelity to original design, implementation costs, coverage and sustainability) to explore how IR can support scale-up.

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Global framework on people-centred and integrated health services

Future Health Systems

Future Health Systems research into empowering communities to demand and shape health services has informed the development of a WHO strategy on service delivery. The strategy reflects a paradigm shift towards an increased emphasis on preventive public health, as well as curative strategies, to address current and future health challenges.

10 Best resources for community engagement in implementation research

Future Health Systems

Glandon D, Paina L, Alonge O, Peters DH and Bennett S (2017) 10 Best resources for community engagement in implementation research, Health Policy and Planning, Volume 32, Issue 10, 1457–1465, doi: 10.1093/heapol/czx123

Implementation research (IR) focuses on understanding how and why interventions produce their effects in a given context. This often requires engaging a broad array of stakeholders at multiple levels of the health system. Whereas a variety of tools and approaches exist to facilitate stakeholder engagement at the national or institutional level, there is a substantial gap in the IR literature about how best to do this at the local or community level. Similarly, although there is extensive guidance on community engagement within the context of clinical trials—for HIV/AIDS in particular—the same cannot be said for IR. We identified a total of 59 resources by using a combination of online searches of the peer-reviewed and grey literature, as well as crowd-sourcing through the Health Systems Global platform. The authors then completed two rounds of rating the resources to identify the ‘10 best’.

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The Human Capital of Knowledge Brokers: An analysis of attributes, capacities and skills of academic teaching and research faculty at Kenyan schools of public health

Future Health Systems

Jessani N, Kennedy C and Bennett S (2016) The Human Capital of Knowledge Brokers: An analysis of attributes, capacities and skills of academic teaching and research faculty at Kenyan schools of public health, Health Research Policy and Systems, 14:58, doi:10.1186/s12961-016-0133-0

Academic faculty involved in public health teaching and research serve as the link and catalyst for knowledge synthesis and exchange, enabling the flow of information resources, and nurturing relations between ‘two distinct communities’ – researchers and policymakers – who would not otherwise have the opportunity to interact. Their role and their characteristics are of particular interest, therefore, in the health research, policy and practice arena, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. We investigated the individual attributes, capacities and skills of academic faculty identified as knowledge brokers (KBs) in schools of public health (SPH) in Kenya with a view to informing organisational policies around the recruitment, retention and development of faculty KBs.

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Enhancing evidence-informed decision making: strategies for engagement between public health faculty and policymakers in Kenya

Future Health Systems

Jessani N, Kennedy C and Bennett S (2016) Enhancing evidence-informed decision making: strategies for engagement between public health faculty and policymakers in Kenya, Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/174426416X14595114153349

Abstract

This article examines the complex interactions and strategies for engagement – both existing as well as desired – between academic Knowledge Brokers (KBs) and national health policymakers in Kenya. Based on semi-structured interviews with academic KBs and university leaders from six Schools of Public Health (SPHs) as well as national policymakers, the authors found that a delicate balance between leveraging personal individual relationships and establishing more sustained institutional partnerships is important for engagement. The authors provide a list of recommended strategies for effective and tailored engagement, and highlight the important but under-appreciated dual role of academic KBs within Kenyan universities.

FHS Key Message Brief 2: How can Research Programme Consortia contribute to capacity development in Low and Middle Income Countries?

Future Health Systems

This brief reflects upon the experience of FHS, a DFID funded RPC, with research capacity development. While FHS espoused a strong commitment to capacity development and put together a package of related strategies to support research capacity development among its partner organizations, these strategies met with varying degrees of success. We consider which types of capacity development strategies may work best for RPCs and under what circumstances.

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Assessing National Health Systems: Why and How

Future Health Systems

Bennett S and Peters D, (2015) Assessing National Health Systems: Why and How, Health Systems & Reform 1(1):9-17, DOI:10.1080/23288604.2014.997107

In reviewing national health systems assessments (HSAs), the authors identify four primary rationales for doing HSAs: (i) to motivate health systems reform, (ii) to promote harmonization and alignment across actors in the health system, (iii) to help translate health systems reforms into meaningful ways to track performance, and (iv) to facilitate learning through cross-country comparisons. The authors propose a set of principles to guide HSAs. 

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Corporate social responsibility in global health: an exploratory study of multinational pharmaceutical firms

Future Health Systems

Droppert H, Bennett S (2015) Corporate social responsibility in global health: an exploratory study of multinational pharmaceutical firms, Globalization and Health 2015 11:15, DOI: 10.1186/s12992-015-0100-5

As pharmaceutical firms experience increasing civil society pressure to act responsibly in a changing globalized world, many are expanding and/or reforming their corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies. The authors of this journal article sought to understand how multinational pharmaceutical companies currently engage in CSR activities in the developing world aimed at global health impact, their motivations for doing so and how their CSR strategies are evolving.

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Do academic knowledge brokers exist? Using social network analysis to explore academic research-to-policy networks from six schools of public health in Kenya

Future Health Systems

The potential for academic research institutions to facilitate knowledge exchange and influence evidence-informed decision-making has been gaining ground. Schools of public health (SPHs) may play a key knowledge brokering role—serving as agencies of and for development. Understanding academic-policymaker networks can facilitate the enhancement of links between policymakers and academic faculty at SPHs, as well as assist in identifying academic knowledge brokers (KBs). Using a census approach, the authors administered a sociometric survey to academic faculty across six SPHs in Kenya to construct academic-policymaker networks.

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Accelerating learning for pro-poor health markets

Future Health Systems

Given the rapid evolution of health markets, learning is key to promoting the identification and uptake of health market policies and practices that better serve the needs of the poor. However there are significant challenges to learning about health markets. We discuss the different forms that learning takes, from the development of codified scientific knowledge, through to experience-based learning, all in relationship to health markets.

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Private sector, for-profit health providers in low and middle income countries: can they reach the poor at scale?

Future Health Systems

The bottom of the pyramid concept suggests that profit can be made in providing goods and services to poor people, when high volume is combined with low margins. To-date there has been very limited empirical evidence from the health sector concerning the scope and potential for such bottom of the pyramid models. This paper analyzes private for-profit (PFP) providers currently offering services to the poor on a large scale, and assesses the future prospects of bottom of the pyramid models in health.

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Institutional capacity for health systems research in East and Central African schools of public health: experiences with a capacity assessment tool

Future Health Systems

Despite significant investments in health systems research (HSR) capacity development, there is a dearth of information regarding how to assess HSR capacity. An alliance of schools of public health (SPHs) in East and Central Africa developed a tool for the self-assessment of HSR capacity with the aim of producing institutional capacity development plans.

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FHS Annual Report (2012-13)

Future Health Systems

The goal of Future Health Systems (FHS) is to improve access, affordability and quality of health services for the poor. In order to build resilient health systems for the future, we generate high quality scientific knowledge about how health systems can better deliver basic health services to the world’s poor. FHS supports its country research teams to identify and respond to health system challenges identified by local stakeholders. This annual report from the period 2012-13 captures our ongoing research, research uptake, and capacity building activities.

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Aid alignment: a longer term lens on trends in development assistance for health in Uganda

Future Health Systems

Over the past decade, development assistance for health (DAH) in Uganda has increased dramatically, surpassing the government’s own expenditures on health. Yet primary health care and other priorities identified in Uganda’s health sector strategic plan remain underfunded. Using data available from the Creditor Reporting System (CRS), National Health Accounts (NHA), and government financial reports, the article examines trends in how donors channel DAH and the extent to which DAH is aligned with sector priorities.
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Expecting the unexpected: applying the Develop-Distort Dilemma to maximize positive market impacts in health

Future Health Systems

Although health interventions start with good intentions to develop services for disadvantaged populations, they often distort the health market, making the delivery or financing of services difficult once the intervention is over: a condition called the ‘Develop-Distort Dilemma’ (DDD). In this paper, we describe how to examine whether a proposed intervention may develop or distort the health market. Our goal is to produce a tool that facilitates meaningful and systematic dialogue for practitioners and researchers to ensure that well-intentioned health interventions lead to productive health systems while reducing the undesirable distortions of such efforts.
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Evaluating health systems strengthening interventions in low-income and middle-income countries: are we asking the right questions?

Future Health Systems

In recent years, there have been several calls for rigorous health policy and systems research to inform efforts to strengthen health systems (HS) in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), including the use of systems thinking concepts in designing and evaluating HS strengthening interventions. The objectives of this paper are to assess recentevaluations of HS strengthening interventions to examine the extent to which they ask a broader set of questions, and provide an appropriately comprehensive assessment of the effects of these interventions across the health system.
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