Future Health Systems Research Programme Consortium

Future Health Systems (FHS) is a research consortium working to improve access, affordability and quality of health services for the poor.

Funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) since 2005, FHS  is a partnership of leading research institutes from across the globe working in a variety of contexts to build resilient health systems for the future in Bangladesh, Uganda, China, India, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Ethiopia.

Future Health Systems - Innovations for equity

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Health Systems Global Communications

IDS is working with Health Systems Global (HSG) to develop communications, share messages and engage with its members and the global community. More details

Future Health Systems Research Programme Consortium

Future Health Systems is a research consortium working to improve access, affordability and quality of health services for the poor. More details

AllAfrica and IDS development reporting initiative

IDS and AllAfrica have teamed up to produce and distribute compelling multi-media content on critical issues for Africa’s future, as part of a development reporting initiative. More details

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Future Health Systems - Innovations for equity

Integrating Actions to Tackle Antimicrobial Resistance into Strategies to Achieve Universal Health Coverage

Future Health Systems Issue Brief 10 (2018)

It is critical that ensuring people’s access to effective treatment for common infections is aligned with efforts to reduce the risk of emerging antimicrobial resistance.The Institute of Development Studies, a Future Health Systems partner, is influencing policy agendas to give greater focus on the need for the just and sustainable use of antimicrobials. More details

Future Health Systems - Innovations for equity

Climate Change: A Threat to Child Food Security in the Indian Sundarbans

Future Health Systems Issue Brief 1 (2018)

The Sundarbans, the mangrove forest delta shared both by India and Bangladesh, is among the worst hit regions of climate change in the world. Even though food insecurities due to climate change are felt across the region, the distribution of vulnerabilities is largely uneven depending upon existing climatic and social intersections.Within the context of socio-cultural and political dynamics, and rapid globalization, efforts to respond to, mitigate, or adapt to climate change needs to address issues of equity and social justice, posing both challenges and opportunities. More details

Future Health Systems - Innovations for equity

In From the Cold: Shifting the Discourse on Informal Providers in Bangladesh and India

In Bangladesh and India, informal healthcare providers (IHPs) have long been part of the countries’health systems. However, formal recognition of their existence is sensitive, partly due to resistanceand concern from professional health bodies. Research by Future Health Systems (FHS) partners ICDDR,B and IIHMR has been instrumental in bringing the issues to discussion tables. Consequently,stakeholders have begun to recognize and work with IHPs – something previously unheard of. More details

A teaser image for BMC journals.

Health System Innovations: Adapting to Rapid Change

Globalization and Health 14.29 (2018)

A fundamental challenge for health systems is the need to adapt to changes in the patterns of health service need, scientific and technological developments, and the economic and institutional contexts within which providers of health services are embedded. This is especially true of many low and middle-income countries, where the pace of multiple and interconnected changes is breath-taking. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Antimicrobial Resistance and Universal Health Coverage

The WHO launched a Global Action Plan on antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in 2015, with AMR being declared a global crisis by world leaders in the G7, G20 and the UN General Assembly. World leaders have also adopted universal health coverage (UHC) as a key target under the sustainable development goals. This paper argues that neither initiative is likely to succeed in isolation from the other and that the policy goals should be to both provide access to appropriate antimicrobial treatment and reduce the risk of the emergence and spread of resistance by taking a systems approach. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Experiences of Using a Participatory Action Research Approach to Strengthen District Local Capacity in Eastern Uganda

To achieve a sustained improvement in health outcomes, the way health interventions are designed and implemented is critical. A participatory action research approach (PAR) is applauded for building local capacity such as health management, thereby increasing the chances of sustaining health interventions. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Characteristics of Community Savings Groups in Rural Eastern Uganda: Opportunities for Improving Access to Maternal Health Services

The objective of this study is to understand organizational characteristics, benefits and challenges of savings groups in rural Uganda. More details

IDS publications on international development research

‘Nurture the Sprouting Bud; Do Not Uproot It’. Using Saving Groups to Save for Maternal and Newborn Health: Lessons from Rural Eastern Uganda

This paper describes saving practices, factors that encourage and constrain saving with saving groups, and lessons learnt while supporting communities to save through saving groups. More details

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ICTs and the Challenge of Health System Transition in Low and Middle-Income Countries

Globalization and Health 13.56 (2017)

The aim of this paper is to contribute to debates about how governments and other stakeholders can influence the application of ICTs to increase access to safe, effective and affordable treatment of common illnesses, especially by the poor. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Disparity in Reimbursement for Tuberculosis Care Among Different Health Insurance Schemes: Evidence from Three Counties in Central China

Infectious Diseases of Poverty 5 (2017)

Health inequity is an important issue all around the world. The Chinese basic medical security system comprises three major insurance schemes, namely the Urban Employee Basic Medical Insurance (UEBMI), the Urban Resident Basic Medical Insurance (URBMI), and the New Cooperative Medical Scheme (NCMS). Little research has been conducted to look into the disparity in payments among the health insurance schemes in China. More details

This is the front cover to IDS Rapid Response Briefing 16, 'What Does the End of Africa's Boom Mean for Universal Health Coveage?'

What Does the End of Africa's Boom Mean for Universal Health Coverage?

IDS Rapid Response Briefing 16 (2017)

Achieving universal health coverage by 2030, as stated in UN Global Goal 3, will require substantial increases in health spending and the proportion funded through taxation or social insurance to make health care affordable for all. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Health Systems Research in a Complex and Rapidly Changing Context: Ethical Implications of Major Health Systems Change at Scale

Developing World Bioethics 16.3 (2016)

This paper discusses health policy and systems research in complex and rapidly changing contexts. It focuses on ethical issues at stake for researchers working with government policy makers to provide evidence to inform major health systems change at scale, particularly when the dynamic nature of the context and ongoing challenges to the health system can result in unpredictable outcomes. More details

IDS publications on international development research

How Can Health Systems Research Reach the Worst-Off? A Conceptual Exploration

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

Health systems research is increasingly being conducted in low and middle-income countries (LMICs). Such research should aim to reduce health disparities between and within countries as a matter of global justice. For such research to do so, ethical guidance that is consistent with egalitarian theories of social justice proposes it ought to (amongst other things) focus on worst-off countries and research populations. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Exploring Pathways for Building Trust in Vaccination and Strengthening Health System Resilience

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

Trust is critical to generate and maintain demand for vaccines in low and middle income countries. However, there is little documentation on how health system insufficiencies affect trust in vaccination and the process of re-building trust once it has been compromised. We reflect on how disruptions to immunizations systems can affect trust in vaccination and can compromise vaccine utilization. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Synergies, Strengths and Challenges: Findings on Community Capability from a Systematic Health Systems Research Literature Review

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

Community capability is the combined influence of a community’s social systems and collective resources that can address community problems and broaden community opportunities. We frame it as consisting of three domains that together support community empowerment: what communities have; how communities act; and for whom communities act. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Unlocking Community Capabilities Across Health Systems in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Lessons Learned from Research and Reflective Practice

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

The right and responsibility of communities to participate in health service delivery was enshrined in the 1978 Alma Ata declaration and continues to feature centrally in health systems debates today. Communities are a vital part of people-centred health systems and their engagement is critical to realizing the diverse health targets prioritised by the Sustainable Development Goals and the commitments made to Universal Health Coverage. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Unlocking Community Capabilities for Improving Maternal and Newborn Health: Participatory Action Research to Improve Birth Preparedness, Health Facility Access, and Newborn Care in Rural Uganda

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

Community capacities and resources must be harnessed to complement supply side initiatives addressing high maternal and neonatal mortality rates in Uganda. This paper reflects on gains, challenges and lessons learnt from working with communities to improve maternal and newborn health in rural Uganda. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Unlocking Community Capability Through Promotion of Self-Help for Health: Experience from Chakaria, Bangladesh

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

This paper describes the project’s implementation, impact, and reflective learnings. More details

IDS publications on international development research

What is the Role of Community Capabilities for Maternal Health? An Exploration of Community Capabilities as Determinants to Institutional Deliveries in Bangladesh, India, and Uganda

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

While community capabilities are recognized as important factors in developing resilient health systems and communities, appropriate metrics for these have not yet been developed. Furthermore, the role of community capabilities on access to maternal health services has been underexplored. More details

IDS publications on international development research

How is Perceived Community Cohesion and Membership in Community Groups Associated with Children’s Dietary Adequacy in Disadvantaged Communities? A Case of the Indian Sundarbans

BMC Health Services Research 16 (2016)

Membership in community groups and a sense of community cohesion may facilitate collective action in mobilizing resources towards better health outcomes. This paper explores the relationship of these factors, along with individual level socio-economic variables, to dietary adequacy among children below 6 years of age, a proximate determinant of child malnutrition. More details

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