Identifying barriers to effective coverage of Primary Health Care

The Western Pacific is a diverse, vast and complex region, with some of the world’s biggest and smallest countries. It is built on a wide range of economies, government systems and demographics. The region is home to almost 1.9 billion people.

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Countries in the region have seen strong economic growth. The increasing economic prosperity has simultaneously seen a rise in non-communicable diseases (NCD).  NCDs, also known as chronic diseases, tend to be of long duration and are the result of a combination of genetic, physiological, environmental and behavioural factors.

To manage the increasing burden of disease, Primary Health Care (PHC) systems are moving from a focus on combating infectious diseases to treating and preventing NCDs. This transition in requires changes to the essential services delivered and the way those services are delivered at the PHC level.

Large gains have been made in improving the coverage of interventions delivered at the primary health care level, but gaps remain in the quality of care provided and equitable coverage of care.

WHO Western Pacific Regional Office (WPRO) has appointed the Nossal Institute for Global Health, University of Melbourne to explore the barriers to effective coverage of PHC and identify effective strategies to address these barriers.

Prarthna Dayal and Dr Matthew Reeve will develop technical briefs to inform regional discussions on the meeting of Universal Health Coverage goals through systematically addressing the barriers to equitable scale-up of effective PHC services in the Western Pacific region.   The researchers will be guided by Nossal’s recognition of the influence of multiple determinants on the achievement of health outcomes such as the actions and organisations traditionally outside of the health sector.

Recommendations on strategies to address barriers to effective coverage of Primary Health Care will be delivered in May 2022.

Read the project details

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Prarthna Dayal