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From Fragile to Resilient Health Systems: A Journey to Self-Reliance

by on October 9, 2019

From Fragile to Resilient Health Systems: A Journey to Self-ReliancePreventable disease, emerging infectious disease, extreme weather-related disasters due to urbanization and environmental degradation, and complications of pregnancy and childbirth still claim far too many lives and challenge the ability of health systems to cope. Meanwhile, shrinking investments, flat country health budgets, population pressures, and complex emergencies challenge the global ability to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Some of the world’s experts were convened by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), which funds MEASURE Evaluation, to take on the topic at its conference in Washington, DC, in March 2019 at a meeting, From Fragile to Resilient Health Systems: A Journey to Self-Reliance. The group addressed multiple factors affecting how health systems are able to respond to routine health challenges and emergencies. For example, what percentage of the health burden are caused by natural and man-made disasters? Or is resilience equally or differentially important at household, community, and institutional or governmental levels? Other topics included consideration of what sectors should contribute to health system resilience and how to measure progress.

The meeting gathered experts from USAID, the World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of State, the USAID mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Bank, UNICEF, Save the Children, World Vision, International Rescue Committee, Johnson & Johnson, GlaxoSmithKline, Johns Hopkins University, Finland’s International Affairs Ministry, Harvard University, Carnegie Mellon University, and MEASURE Evaluation—with all of those perspectives shared in this report.

Videos of the presentations given at the meeting are online on MEASURE Evaluation’s YouTube channel.

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