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In a world of rising health care costs and increasing health care needs, access to tested approaches and techniques in the management of health care is more vital than ever. This compendium offers practical tools and techniques to address current challenges in public health management.

A cross-sectional study conducted in two states of India during 2006-08 found a disconnect between routine antenatal practices in India and known strategies to prevent and treat malaria in pregnancy. Prevention strategies, in particular the use of insecticide-treated bednets, are underutilized.

Drawing on evidence from Malawi and Ethiopia, this article analyses the eff ects of ARTscale-up interventions on human resources policies, service delivery and general health outcomes, and explores how synergies can be maximized.

Background To improve access to treatment in the private retail sector a new class of outlets known as accredited drug dispensing outlets (ADDO) was created in Tanzania. Tanzania changed its first-line treatment for malaria from sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) to artemether-lumefantrine (ALu) in 2007. Subsidized ALu was made available in both health facilities and ADDOs.

HIV/AIDS is a critical concern in South Africa, where extreme poverty and gender issues are major determinants of health. A comprehensive home-based care programme is needed to lessen the burden placed on the caregivers of those suffering from HIV/AIDS. The purpose of this study was to explore and describe the challenges faced by people who are living with HIV/AIDS and by their caregivers in resource-poor, remote South African villages.

In 2008, The Roll Back Malaria partnership issued guidelines for inclusion of pharmacovigilance in Global Fund and other related proposals. In light of this recommendation and the rapid scale-up of ACT worldwide, an analysis of Global Fund Round 8 proposals and the President's Malaria Initiative (PMI) 2009 Malaria Operational Plans was conducted to assess if and how pharmacovigilance has been incorporated into countries' national malaria plans and donor budget requests.

An East African survey showed that among the few health facilities that measured adherence to antiretroviral therapy, practices and definitions varied widely. We evaluated the feasibility of collecting routine data to standardize adherence measurement using a draft set of indicators.

Background: Delay in Tuberculosis (TB) case detection may worsen the disease and increase TB transmission. It is also a challenge to the National TB and Leprosy control Program (NTLP).Methods: We conducted a cross sectional study in four out of six districts in Pwani region to estimate the extent and factors responsible for delay in TB case detection in Pwani region.

This review aimed to document evidence on access to effective malaria treatment in Kenya, identify factors that influence access, and make recommendations on how to improve prompt access to effective malaria treatment. Since treatment-seeking patterns for malaria are similar in many settings in sub Saharan Africa, the findings presented in this review have important lessons for other malaria endemic countries.

Given the large population at risk, a cross sectional study was conducted in order to better define the burden of malaria in pregnancy in Jharkhand, a malaria-endemic state in central-east India.

Background: Tuberculosis (TB) case detection in women has remained low in developing world. This study was conducted to determine the proportion of smear positive TB among women with cough regardless of the duration attending family Planning (FP) and Maternal and child health (MCH) clinics in Dar es Salaam.Methods: We conducted a cross sectional study in all three municipal hospital

Adoption of the new WHO guidelines would increase the total number of patients on ART in 19 high-patient-load health centers in Addis Ababa and four regions of Ethiopia by about 30%. The shift in the CD4+ threshold for ART initiation will substantially increase the demand for ART in Ethiopia. Since under the current systems only 60% of Ethiopia’s patients in need of ART are receiving the medications, scaling up ART programs to accommodate the increased demand for drugs will not be possible unless government funding and support increase concurrently.

The Ministry of Health and Social Services in Namibia conducted a confirmatory assessment of the risk of anemia associated with zidovudine (AZT)-based highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) using records contained in three electronic databases. A total of 12,358 records were examined. We measured the sensitivity of the starting HAART regimen (the proportion of AZT users in the clinical record correctly identified in the electronic record), and specificity of severe anemia (the proportion of non-cases of severe anemia in the clinical records correctly identified in the electronic record). Probabilistic record linkage methods were effective for records linkage in this sub-Saharan African setting.

This assessment of health information needs, conducted in the capital city and 3 districts of Malawi in 2009, showed the need to build the capacity of government technical working groups to collect and store information and promote information exchange; improve information synthesis and packaging; strengthen the district level to serve as an information hub; and explore the use of mobile technologies.

A demonstration project (January 2010 to June 2011) in Malawi improved the exchange and use of family planning/reproductive health and HIV/AIDS knowledge among health workers using a short message service (SMS) network.

Despite lower levels of artemether-lumefantrine (AL) stock-outs compared to the reports in 2008, the stock-outs at Kenyan facilities during 2010-2011 are still substantial and of particular worry for the most detrimental: simultaneous absence of any AL pack. Only minor decrease was observed in the stock-outs of individual AL packs. Recently launched interventions to eliminate AL stock-outs in Kenya are fully justified.

Of 48 surveyed hospitals and health centers in Ethiopia, 9 (19%), 9 (19%), and 10 (21%) did not have malaria, TB, or HIV drugs, respectively. Similarly, of 27 health posts, 9 (33%) and 6 (22%) did not have rapid diagnostic tests and antimalarial drugs, respectively. The findings indicated an inadequate availability of essential drugs and commodities in the surveyed facilities as well as weaknesses in human resources and training.

This article is the lead article in the Human Resources for Health journal's first quarterly feature. The series of seven articles was contributed by Management Sciences for Health (MSH) under the theme of leadership and management in public health. The journal invited Dr. Manuel M. Dayrit, Director of the WHO Department of Human Resources for Health and former Minister of Health for the Philippines, to launch the feature with an opening editorial in the journal's blog. This opening article describes the human resource challenges that managers around the world report and analyses why solutions often fail to be implemented. The case studies in this issue were chosen to illustrate results from using the Leadership Development Program (LDP) at different levels of the health sector. The LDP makes a profound difference in health managers' attitudes towards their work. Rather than feeling defeated by a workplace climate that lacks motivation, hope, and commitment to change, people report that they are mobilized to take action to change the status quo. The lesson is that without this capacity at all levels, global policy and national HR strategies will fail to make a difference.

Background: International initiatives such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the President's Malaria Initiative have significantly increased availability and access to medicines in some parts of the developing world. Despite this, however, skills remain limited on quantifying needs for medications and order

As part of the special feature on leadership and human resources, Management Sciences for Health profiles three leaders who have made a significance difference in the HR situation in their countries.

Despite a pool of unemployed health staff available in Kenya, staffing levels at most facilities were only 50%, and maldistribution of staff left many people without access to antiretroviral therapy (ART).

This article is the third article in the Human Resources for Health journal's feature on the theme of leadership and management in public health. The third article presents a successful application in Mozambique of a leadership development program created by Management Sciences for Health (MSH).

This article is the second article in the Human Resources for Health journal's first quarterly feature. This article describes the experience of the Family Life Education Programme (FLEP), a reproductive health program that provides community-based health services through 40 clinics in five districts of Uganda, in improving retention and performance by using the Management Sciences for Health (MSH) Human Resource Management Rapid Assessment Tool.

Background: In Senegal, traditional supervision often focuses more on collection of service statistics than on evaluation of service quality. This approach yields limited information on quality of care and does little to improve providers' competence. In response to this challenge, Management Sciences for Health (MSH) has implemented a program of formative supervision.

Low-income countries with high HIV/AIDS burdens in sub-Saharan Africa must deal with severe shortages of qualified human resources for health. This situation has triggered the renewed interest in community health workers, as they may play an important role in scaling-up antiretroviral treatment for HIV/AIDS by taking over a number of tasks from the professional health workers.

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