News: ESRC-DFID research related to 'Health for All'

Photo: Pippa Ranger, Innovation Advisor, DFID/Flickr licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

05/12/2017

As it stands, at least 400 million people globally lack access to one or more essential health services. This is why achieving universal health coverage (UHC) by 2030 is at the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This week global leaders will meet in Tokyo, Japan at the Universal Health Coverage Forum at the co-organised event by the Government of Japan, the World Bank, the World Health Organization, UNICEF and UHC2030 to consider and identify strategies to take this forward.

Research funded by the ESRC-DFID Joint Fund for Poverty Alleviation brings to the fore vital evidence for governments and civil society to use to inform future plans and processes in strengthening health systems, understanding the complex power dynamics that prevent people from accessing healthcare and tackling inequity of access.

Health-related research

Alcohol control, poverty and development in South Africa
(South Africa)
November 2010 to December 2013
Clare Beatrice Herrick
KING'S COLLEGE LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
This research explores how the lived relationships between alcohol control (as a debate, field of study, policies and practices), poverty and development in South Africa (SA) are manifested among Cape Town's (CT) poorest residents.

Biomedical and health experimentation in South Asia: critical perspectives on collaboration, governance and competition
(Brazil, China, India, Nepal, Russia, Sri Lanka)
September 2010 to February 2013
Roger Jeffery
UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH, UNITED KINGDOM
A comparative study of three South Asian countries (India, Nepal and Sri Lanka) where growth in processes such as clinical trials and innovative health programmes are creating new social forms (such as contract research organisations, training courses, consultancies, dedicated units in hospitals and universities and site management organisations). Clinical trials activity have shifted in recent years towards Brazil, Russia, India and China.

Demographic and poverty dynamics in an African population with high AIDS mortality and implications for social policy
(South Africa)
October 2006 to March 2010
Ian Manfred Timaeus
LONDON SCHOOL OF HYGIENE AND TROP MEDICINE, UNITED KINGDOM 
The project investigated the impact of deaths of working-age adults on household welfare and the determinants of differential vulnerability and resilience. It analysed two longitudinal studies from KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, where mortality has risen massively since the late 1990s and most working-age adult deaths are now from AIDS.

Determinants of health care decisions: children's health in Mali
(Mali)
October 2013 to March 2015
Mark Robert Dean
INNOVATIONS FOR POVERTY ACTION, USA
A randomized controlled trial of two healthcare policies in a peri-urban region of Bamako, Mali: the provision of free primary care, and regular visits from health workers who teach mothers good practices and accompany children to the doctor. This study explored the effects of healthcare policies on the use of healthcare resources by the mothers of young children - in particular when they seek medical care, who they seek care from, and the use of preventive measures such as mosquito nets and water purification.

How can schools help African children cope with the impacts of disease and poverty? An investigation of 'AIDS competent' schools in rural Zimbabwe
(Zimbabwe)
March 2012 to October 2014
Catherine Magda Campbell
LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, UNITED KINGDOM
The study investigated the development of a model of the 'HIV competent school' - which optimises children's inclusion, support and health, even given poverty and political uncertainty. This model constituted a resource for local, national and international health and educational professionals and policy makers seeking to promote the role of schools in tackling child poverty and disease in Africa.

ICTs and the changing health knowledge economy: how people find health information in Bangladesh
(Bangladesh)
October 2012 to March 2016
Gerald Bloom
INSTITUTE OF DEVELOPMENT STUDIES, UNITED KINGDOM
Examined how the spread of the mass media, increased access to the internet, and high levels of mobile phone use are changing the ways that poor people seek health-related information and advice. In order to pick up new patterns of behaviour with the potential to spread rapidly, the research focused on health information seeking behaviour in one relatively remote rural area, one rural area with good transport links to Dhaka and one slum in Dhaka.

Identifying barriers to TB diagnosis and treatment under a new rapid diagnostic scheme
(Ethiopia, Nepal, Yemen)
May 2008 to October 2012
Luis Eduardo Cuevas
LIVERPOOL SCHOOL OF TROPICAL MEDICINE, UNITED KINGDOM
This study identified the barriers preventing adults from completing the tuberculosis diagnostic process in Nepal, Yemen and Ethiopia and the changes that are required to increase treatment uptake.  A combination of quantitative and qualitative methods were be used.

Impact evaluation of performance-based contracting for general health and HIV/AIDS services in Rwanda
(Rwanda)
February 2008 to January 2012
Stefano Michele Bertozzi
NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF PUBLIC HEALTH, MEXICO
An impact evaluation of a performance-based financing (PBF) scheme for health care, including basic preventive and curative health care services and HIV/AIDS treatment, implemented in Rwanda from 2006-2008.

Making it happen - increasing access to diagnosis and treatment for tuberculosis
(Ethiopia)
March 2014 to March 2015
Luis Eduardo Cuevas
LIVERPOOL SCHOOL OF TROPICAL MEDICINE, UNITED KINGDOM
Examined how to engage health and financial policy decision makers at different levels (district, region, national and international) to integrate a new approach to diagnose and treat tuberculosis at the community level.

New norms and forms of development: brokerage in maternal and child health service development and delivery in Nepal and Malawi
(Malawi, Nepal)
May 2014 to April 2016
Ian Harper
UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH, UNITED KINGDOM
Through a focus on the role and functions of different types of institutions and professionals who broker health sector development projects and programmes, the research explored the nature of mediation and translation involved in that process and the difference these actors make in meeting the global health development objectives and comparing processes for Maternal and Child Health in Malawi and Nepal.

Poverty and maternal health in Ghana: a spatial analysis of exclusion from care
(Ghana)
July 2008 to January 2011
Zoe Matthews
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON, UNITED KINGDOM
This project aimed to quantify the spatial links between poverty and poor utilisation of maternal health services in Ghana. By investigating factors related to both physical accessibility and availability of health services, the research facilitated an understanding of the effect of poverty on patterns of spatial variation in service use.

Poverty reduction and regional integration: a comparative analysis of SADC and UNASUR health policies
(Bolivia, Paraguay, Swaziland, Zambia)
March 2014 to December 2015
Nicola Yeates
OPEN UNIVERSITY, UNITED KINGDOM
This project examined the scope for enhancing Southern multilateral regional organisations' contributions to poverty reduction through regional health policy. The project uses mixed methods, comparative and participatory approaches and methodologies.

Pregnancy termination trajectories in Zambia: maximising research impact 
(Zambia)
June 2014 to August 2015
Ernestina Elizabeth Coast
LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, UNITED KINGDOM
Aimed to maximise the impact of research that investigated the socio-economic costs of unsafe and safe abortion for women, their households and the Zambian health system.

Pregnancy termination trajectories in Zambia: the socio-economic costs
(Zambia)
December 2011 to November 2014
Ernestina Elizabeth Coast
LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND POLITICAL SCIENCE, UNITED KINGDOM
This research explored how investment in safe abortion services impact on the socio-economic conditions of women and their households, and the implications for policy-making and service provision in Zambia.

Proposal to conceptually integrate social determinants of health research and capabilities approach to development and social justice
(El Salvador, Peru)
February 2008 to September 2010
Michael Gideon Marmot
UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
An inter-disciplinary project which focused on health capability as a new approach to understanding and addressing health inequalities. Three main research areas examined: the philosophy of social epidemiology; conceptualizing human health as a capability; and integrating social determinants research and capabilities theory.

Stigma and discrimination associated with TB in Asia
(Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan)
May 2007 to May 2009
James Nicholas Newell
UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS, UNITED KINGDOM
Research that explored the causes of stigma and discrimination caused by TB. This was done by interviewing people affected by discrimination (TB patients and their families) and those who carry out the discrimination (friends, employers, neighbours), in Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan, three countries badly affected by TB. Records of the interviews were analysed to identify the main themes.

The accountability politics of reducing health inequities: learning from Brazil and Mozambique
(Brazil, Mozambique)
April 2016 to September 2018
Alexander Shankland
INSTITUTE OF DEVELOPMENT STUDIES, UNITED KINGDOM
Aims to strengthen the evidence base on the politics of accountability via multi-level case studies in health systems in Brazil and Mozambique, exploring how accountability can be strengthened to deliver better health services for citizens everywhere.  Although the case study research is still under way, the project's initial evidence review, case study scoping and engagement activities have generated valuable findings on the determinants of effective use of service user feedback to drive accountability in a way that improves health equity.

The design and evaluation of a mobile learning intervention for the training and supervision of community health workers
(Kenya)
November 2014 to September 2015
Niall Winters
UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD, UNITED KINGDOM
This project set out to advance the training and supervision of community health workers (CHWs) in Kenya. It addressed this by developing an accessible mobile learning intervention that encouraged more supportive supervision and helped to link this more closely to CHW practice.

The economic and social effects of care dependence in later life
(China, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru) 
September 2011 to March 2014
Martin James Prince
KING'S COLLEGE LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM 
A study that explored whether, and if so how, the onset of care-dependence in an older household member can lead to household impoverishment and vulnerability. Households with an older person who has developed needs for care (incident care households) were compared with those with older residents with long-standing needs for care (chronic dependence) and no needs for care (control households).

Tracing pharmaceuticals in South Asia: regulation, distribution and consumption
(India, Nepal)
September 2006 to December 2009
Roger Jeffery 
UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH, UNITED KINGDOM
This multi-disciplinary project combined anthropological fieldwork with archival and interview-based research to investigate the conditions that make possible continuing inappropriate use of medicines in South Asia.