Models for health manpower planning.

Martins-Coelho, G. Models for health manpower planning. European Journal of Public Health: 2010, 20(suppl. 1), p. 147. Abstract. 3rd European Public Health Conference 'Integrated Public Health', 10 - 13 November 2010, Amsterdam.
Manpower is critical for health care systems but one of the least strategically planned resources. Several models for health manpower planning (HMP) have been described in the literature. Developing a classification framework of such models can trigger comparison and selection of the most appropriate model for each case, i.e. country, region, group etc. We performed a review of scientific and grey literature containing descriptions of models for HMP world wide but restricted to the year 1970 and later. We then extracted data from the reviewed literature to build a classification framework of models for HMP. Our preliminary classification framework covers nine overlapping models labelled as: models of care or service target based; needs based; utilization or demand based; effective needs based; effective utilization or demand based; health workforce density; international benchmarking; effective infrastructure; and adjusted service target. For every model three steps are distinguished: selecting which requirements will be targeted; processing those requirements according to predetermined assumptions and parameters; and calculating projections of future requirements according to the previous inputs. It appears that each model adopts different requirements as input and processes them in a different way, yielding different outputs. This framework helps policy makers to benchmark their manpower planning in order to improve health labour market efficiency and to address new challenges such as global migration or the shifting roles of health care workers. (aut. ref.)