CHEPSAA's final report
The Consortium for Health Policy and Systems Analysis in Africa (CHEPSAA) worked from 2011-2015 to increase sustainable African capacity to produce and use health policy and systems research and analysis (HPSR+A). CHEPSAA was a partnership between 7 African and 4 European universities that impacted on African capacity in HPSR+A, and the field of HPSR+A in general, in the following key ways:
- It produced new knowledge on the capacity development needs and assets of HPSR+A in Africa through assessments in African partner countries and developed tools for future such assessments;
- Through publications, meetings and networking, it helped to build the profile of HPSR+A - internationally, regionally and with policy makers and other educators in the countries and organisations of the CHEPSAA partners;
- It has supported each CHEPSAA partner organisation’s development in terms of the number and skills of individuals engaged in HPSR+A as well as more broadly, their: HPSR+A teaching programmes; curriculum development awareness; profile within their own universities, as well as regionally and internationally; networks and engagement nationally, and internationally;
- It contributed to developing a new generation of HPSR+A scholars and educators, especially through the CHEPSAA Emerging Leaders Programme. This programme included 26 participants from Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania and South Africa and sought to build a wide range of capacities, ranging from inter-personal to knowledge about the functioning of health systems and approaches to researching health systems. These Emerging Leaders self-report they are likely to continue to work in the field and are better equipped to do research and to teach HPSR+A;
- It changed the landscape of HPSR+A teaching by developing and publishing two open access courses, which anyone can access, use and adapt: Introduction to Complex Health Systems and Introduction to Health Policy Systems and Research. Together with an existing course on Introduction to Health Policy Analysis, these courses are already being used in the postgraduate teaching of the CHEPSAA partners, influencing current and future generations of HPSR+A professionals, and have been downloaded from more than 40 countries around the world;
- CHEPSAA also built skills in teaching and curriculum design which have been shared more widely within country-level networks, and which can now be applied to strengthen HPSR+A teaching programmes within and outside CHEPSAA organisations;
- It initiated a process of planning for a pan-African DrPH programme, and considered the needs for specialist HPSR+A masters courses, to provide career development opportunities for HPSR+A professionals; and
- By supporting networking between researchers, educators and policy makers, CHEPSAA has strengthened individuals’ skills, contributed to organisational development and created opportunities for dialogue, mutual learning and the initiation of new HPSR+A work.
Although the CHEPSAA project has come to an end, it has created many outputs and tools that others can use and adapt in future to continue to build the field of HPSR+A. In addition, CHEPSAA’s legacy and its contribution to HPSR+A capacity will be sustained through the strong networks it has created and the ideas which have been infused into those networks. These networks will continue to exist and be expanded and CHEPSAA’s key ideas will continue to find expression in the activities and projects of the future.