© Juliette Papy

Looking beyond Borders – Strengthening Health Care Systems

From 2030, people from everywhere are to have access to good and stable health care. This is one of the sustainable development goals laid out in the UN’s 2030 Agenda. Many countries are thus currently developing a universal health care system for the first time. Many decision-makers are undergoing specific training to make this happen. AIZ is one of the providers of this training.


Only a few years ago, it has become apparent that many well-planned plans on health reform showed lack of effective cooperation between the experts and managers involved. So in 2013, the World Bank and GIZ launched the Leadership for Universal Health Coverage programme. The aim of this programme was to strengthen the spirit of cooperation and leadership skills of those who make key decisions on health care reforms in their respective countries.


The role of AIZ

The sector programme P4H (Providing for Health) commissioned AIZ to develop a leadership journey on this topic. Key decision-makers from ministries, hospitals, the pharmaceutical sector and civil society set out together on a discovery journey consisting of three modules. In cooperation with the World Bank, AIZ designed this measure specifically for the Universal Health Coverage programme. This intensive advanced training course is attended by delegations from four to six countries that have been experiencing difficulties in implementing their reform. The training courses are held in countries which have already overcome obstacles of this sort. This gives participating managers the opportunity to find inspiration in the ideas and progress of other countries. Participants apply a selected range of methodologies to create and share visions for successful cooperation, while also reflecting on their leadership role.



Key stakeholders from the ministries, health sector and civil society in eight African and four Asian countries underwent advanced training with support from the leadership programme. This meant AIZ was able to significantly improve cooperation and coordination on the implementation of health reforms in these twelve countries. As one civil society representative put it, filled with courage after returning from one of the workshops, "I felt almost as if this module had been created specifically for me. I have always been committed to universal health coverage, but have lost all hope in recent months. I thought that nothing would ever come of it in my country. However these three workshop days gave me the strength to continue. I was able to see the level of commitment of decision-makers in my country. With their commitment there is no longer any reason for our civil society to lose hope. We will continue the dialogue full of motivation.“