Health workforce

The crisis

Insufficient numbers and inadequate education of health workers threaten all areas of healthcare, including health promotion, as well as access to disease prevention and treatment. Poorly monitored and managed migration undermines the distribution of health workers and, consequently, the provision of fair and universally available health care.

As a priority WHO will address:

    • The global shortage of all types of health workers, including support workers. This is especially critical in 57 developing countries – 36 of which are in Africa – where the shortage is most severe.
    • The fact that insufficient HRH capacity and poor workforce performance will slow progress towards the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
    • The fact that the investments of Global Health Initiatives, private foundations, multi- and bi-lateral development agencies have had a reduced impact because of a lack of human and institutional capacity to absorb, deploy and use their funds efficiently.