Implementation of policy and management interventions to improve health and care workforce capacity to address the COVID-19 pandemic response: living systematic review
 
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1
Instituto de Medicina Social, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro - UERJ, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
 
2
Instituto de Medicina Social, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (UERJ), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
 
3
Global Health and Tropical Medicine, Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical, Universidade Nova de Lisboa (UNL), Lisboa, Portugal
 
4
Instituto Nacional de Câncer, Ministério da Saúde, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
 
5
Global Health and Tropical Medicine, Instituto de Higiene e Medicina Tropical, Universidade Nova de Lisboa - UNL, Lisboa, Portugal
 
6
Health Workforce Department, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland
 
 
Publication date: 2023-04-27
 
 
Popul. Med. 2023;5(Supplement):A1726
 
ABSTRACT
Background and Objective: The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted pre-existing weaknesses in health and care systems. Policymakers needed to adopt measures to face these challenges improving the surge capacity of the health and care workforce (HCW). This living systematic review (LSR) aimed to identify countries’ range of policies and management interventions implemented to improve HCW capacity to address the COVID-19 pandemic response. Methods: LSR of studies, technical and political documents published in PubMed, Embase, Scopus, LILACS/BVS, WHO COVID-19 Research Database, ILO, OECD and the Health System Response Monitor from 2020 to March 2022. Data were collected and organized according to interim guidelines from WHO. For risk of bias the JBI Critical Appraisal Tools were used, and GRADE to assess the certainty of the evidence on the outcomes identified. Results: A total of 69 documents were included, but only 14 publications offered outcomes for policy and management interventions implemented by countries. 66.7% of the documents described at least one intervention to increase the flexibility and capacity of the HCW. Most interventions were to attract and retain HCW in a safe and decent working environment (58% of the documents described at least one intervention). Interventions related to licensing and regulation were implemented to increase the HCW pool, such as making training received abroad more easily recognized and to regulation of practice within the respective countries. Conclusions: Many of the systemwide health workforce enablers were viewed as intervention facilitators, and little was explored on how they were (re)structured and adapted to allow for the agility of implementation. The SR identified a lack of studies, particularly in the areas of social protection service provision, planning and evaluation, and human resources information systems, and no information was found regarding the role of community health workers and other community-based providers. The impact and effectiveness of strategies require further research.
 
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ISSN:2654-1459
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