HELP WANTED: Confronting the health care worker crisis


Read the MSF report Help wanted confronting the healthcare worker crisis to expand access to HIV/AIDS treatment: MSF experience in southern Africa.


"I have been working as a nurse since 1971 and in my opinion what we are seeing now is a chronic emergency. There are too many patients for too few nurses and the pressure is too much."

Coping with health worker shortages: lessons and limits

National policies (government and professional councils) play a determining role in the extent to which strategies to decentralise care can be implemented. Whether or not a government will allow nurses to initiate and prescribe ARVs, for example, determines the pace of decentralisation and scale-up of ART.

Retaining health workers: the basics

Benefits and incentives are also important factors that affect retention. Pensions, medical aid/insurance, hardship/rural allowances, education allowances for children, and transport allowances, are some of the ways in which health staff can be encouraged to stay.

Patients without providers: emergency response needed even in MSF programmes where significant external resources are brought in, our ability to scale up, maintain quality, and address specific medical challenges is being stretched to the limit.

Download the report: Help wanted (PDF)