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Wednesday June 12, 2024

‘Public-sector healthcare providers need training on pattern of private sector’

By M. Waqar Bhatti
June 19, 2023

Islamabad:Provincial health departments need skilled health managers to provide quality healthcare facilities to the masses, which is not possible without continuous management education, refresher courses and training, national and international experts told health managers from Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Saturday.

Speaking at the concluded ceremony of a four-day training workshop, which was attended by around 20 senior health managers from different programs of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa health departments at Health Services Academy (HSA), they said public-sector healthcare providers and managers need training on the pattern of the private sector to deliver quality healthcare services to masses and improve the standard of public health facilities. “Leadership capacity building and management skills development is very important for our healthcare managers and senior health officials so that they could deliver quality healthcare services to the masses. HSA in collaboration with GOPA and German organization KFW and GIZ has started training management officials of provincial health departments to work as per international standards and guidelines”, Prof. Shahzad Ali Khan, Vice Chancellor HSA said on the concluding session of the 4-day training on Saturday.

He maintained that in order to improve the health system of Pakistan, a consortium including KFW, GIZ, and GOPA Worldwide Consultants through their knowledge partner, the Health Services Academy (HSA), has partnered with health departments of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on a project called “Self-Empowerment of Women” (SEW). “This ambitious project is an incredible initiative aimed at empowering unemployed women from lower-income groups in Punjab and KP. Project’s ultimate goal is to enable them to engage in profitable and independent entrepreneurial activities within the private health sector”, he said adding that SEW project spans over 36 months and includes a range of activities, with a special focus on developing the management and leadership capacities of Project Executing Departments (PEDs).

Prof. Khan maintained that HSA firmly believes that enhancing the skills of health sector officials is crucial for improving the delivery of quality healthcare services across Pakistan, adding that the Health Services Academy with the support of the consortium partners, designed a com­pre­hensive 4-day capacity-building training program for senior management staff of PEDs as part of this SEW project.

“This training course aimed to equip the participants with essential knowledge and skills that will positively contribute to overall health system strengthening and enhance the quality of healthcare services provided by Clinic Operators (COs) in the SEW Project”, he said adding that by leveraging the support of the health departments of Punjab and KP, HSA is confident that this training program will significantly improve the management of health services. Director ORIC at HSA Dr. Mubashir said trainees who are senior managers in the health departments in KP and Punjab, who were nominated by their respective departments, travelled all the way to come to Islamabad in person for four days and were trained by local and international experts from Pakistan as well as United States, Germany and other countries in leadership and management skills.

He said several experts including Prof. Dr. Abid Ali Khan, Snr. Program Manager FCDO Tamour Rashid, Lead Faculty Member, Dr. Ikhlaq Ahmed, and Clinical Psychologist Ms. Sobia Khateeb took the seven sessions in total and implemented blended learning of concepts and practice through group activities. The training program also attracted the presence of experts from DoH Punjab, KFW and GOPA Worldwide Consultants including Dr. Masuma M. Zaidi Senior, Sector Specialist-Health KFW Jim C Myers Team Leader SEW-GOPA and Dr. Zafar Khan.