Health workforce

A midwife checking a patient's blood pressure in Khaspak, Afghanistan. A midwife checking a patient's blood pressure in Khaspak, Afghanistan. Photo credit: WHO

Health workers are all people primarily engaged in actions with the primary intent of enhancing health. At the heart of each and every health system, the workforce is central to advancing health. Developing capable, motivated and supported health workers is essential for overcoming bottlenecks to achieve national and global health goals. Health care is a labour-intensive service industry. Health workers are not just individuals but are integral parts of functioning health teams in which each member contributes different skills and performs different functions.

Health workers in the Region are often overworked, poorly paid, and not provided with the necessary equipment and supplies to do their jobs. Their work performance can also suffer due to a lack of adequate training, supervision and feedback. The human resources development programme of WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean provides technical support to Member States in strengthening national capacity and achieving balanced deployment and access to more motivated and skilled health workers, particularly in underserved areas.

 

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