Planning human resources in health care: Towards an economic approach

by Karen Bloor, Alan Maynard | Mar 01, 2003

Policy makers in Canada’s healthcare system recognize the need to plan health human resources better, with more systematic and integrated approaches. Many are looking to other healthcare systems for ideas and examples that might be useful in the Canadian context.

At a distance, other countries’ health systems may look like they hold straightforward answers for Canada’s health system. But it is clear that opinions developed from afar are not sufficient to base management and policy decisions on. To inform the design and development of improved workforce planning, a review of healthcare systems was done in five countries: Australia, France, Germany, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Planning human resources in health care: Towards an economic approach highlights the results of that review and its implications for those running the health system.

This review was commissioned by the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation at the request of and with funding from the Advisory Committee on Health Human Resources of the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Conference of Deputy Ministers of Health. The Institute of Health Services and Policy Research in the Canadian Institutes of Health Research provided assistance with peer review and with defining the original scope of the paper.