Public Health workforce development
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Institute of Public Health, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates
Comprehensive Health Research Center (CHRC), NOVA Medical School (NMS), Faculdade de Ciências Médicas (FCM), Universidade NOVA de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal
Publication date: 2023-04-27
Popul. Med. 2023;5(Supplement):A1723
Background: Health workforce and public health specialists are the cornerstones of any developed health system, as evidenced by the countries’ management of the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for public health competences and urgency of health workforce innovation. Methods: This is a review of healthcare systems, the educational structure of public health specialization, and the availability of public health cadres in six countries: the United States of America (USA), the United Kingdom (UK), Canada, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) (Abu Dhabi). Information published by the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Bank, official data from ministries of health and the National Bureau of Statistics from each country, the European Public Health Association, international bodies concerned with public health, and studies conducted by universities was revised. Results: There are different experiences in the countries in establishing a special structure for public health, especially in the USA, the UK, and Saudi Arabia, and far less in Singapore and Canada, while it is noted that it is still in its early stages in the UAE. The review highlighted the need to changing concepts of preventable disease, provisions directed toward better mental health, growing emphasis on health education, the biostatistical, epidemiological approach, changes resulting from an aging population, concern regarding the quality of the environment and increasing interest of national governments. Conclusions: All countries need to integrate the concept of public health into their programs and structure of the Ministry of Health, giving priority to the competence of public health for all workers in the health sector, and work in a long-term heath strategy. This will enhance health systems preparedness. Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, health systems preparedness, human resources for health, public health workforce, United Arab Emirates
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