Recent Health Issues
Pakistan’s drug deaths
Heartfile has published statements in media regarding the deaths of over 125 people in Lahore from contaminated drugs, which are a stark illustration of the inherent institutional and policy weaknesses in our health systems. Our publications in the media and in other academic journals on this issue can be accessed below:
18th constitutional amendment and health
Heartfile has published statements regarding the April 2010 18th Constitutional Amendment passed by the Pakistan National Assembly. This amendment abolished the health ministry of Pakistan and devolved its portfolio to the provinces. Our articles and statements in the media and in other academic journals on this issue can be accessed below:
Heartfile has voiced its concern regarding the remaining reservoir of polio endemic that still remains a major issue despite massive investment and high level political commitment. Our articles and statements in the media and in other academic journals on this issue can be read below:
In the past few decades, policy makers have recognized that for any significant improvement in the health profile of a country, the focus must be on health systems as a whole. Particular diseases and epidemics are simply symptoms of a larger problem, namely the affliction of the whole system. Heartfile’s significant achievements in this area are summarized below:
Health systems performance assessment
Establishing a framework for health systems performance assessment (initiated in 2009). This was part of a WHO-led platform to ‘Strengthen Monitoring and Analysis of Country Health Systems.’ This assessment will be reported in the Pakistan Lancet Series, scheduled to be published in late 2012.
Heartfile Health Financing
Developing an IT-supported demand side health financing tool that can enable efficient, timely and well-targeted cash transfers in order to protect the poor against catastrophic spending on health, and to establish a seed Health Equity Fund (initiated in 2008). This is being done under the name of ‘Heartfile Health Financing.’
Funding: Rockefeller Foundation
18th constitutional amendment in Pakistan
The Gateway Paper: Health Systems in Pakistan – a Way Forward
The Gateway series of papers
, which aim to strengthen the evidence base of health reform. The first in the series, Gateway Paper I
was the first consolidated review of health systems in Pakistan. Its strategy was recognized as a blueprint for formulation of a new national health policy for Pakistan. Pro bono time contribution: Dr. Sania Nishtar.
Health Indicators of Pakistan – Gateway Paper II
The post-gateway roundtables
Memoranda of understanding with the government on health policy development
Assessment of corruption in health service delivery
Health systems research
Research in the area of priority setting for health systems research. The study aimed at the development of a locally suited priority-setting model. Funding: Global Forum for Health Research, Geneva.
Research in the domain of health communication. The intervention capitalizing on the strengths of social marketing. Funding: Canadian International Development Agency. Details of the campaigns can be accessed here
and publication can be accessed here
National Action Plan on NCDs
Health information system
Supporting the development of a health information system in the aftermath of the October 8, 2005 earthquake.
This database system generated regular reports to facilitate the Ministry of Health in its strategic planning with regard to relief efforts.
Health population institutional disconnect in Pakistan
Non Communicable Diseases
National Action Plan on NCDs in Pakistan
In the initial stages of its development, Heartfile used innovative approaches of advocacy, leveraging social marketing and the use of media
. This and other advocacy approaches enabled Heartfile to convince the government of the need for a public health programme on NCDs in Pakistan. Subsequently, Heartfile became part of a tripartite public-private partnership involving the Ministry of Health, Government of Pakistan, and the World Health Organization for development and implementation of a National Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases and Health Promotion in Pakistan (NAP-NCD). Details about the terms of this agreement
, launching of the initiative
, planning meetings leading to its development
and the release of the NAP-NCD
are posted online. Heartfile also took a lead role in helping initiate the process of implementation of this plan on a pro bono basis; various stages of implementation
of the pilot can also be viewed. Heartfile’s current objective is to institutionalize this programme in the Ministry of Health
The mentioned NAP-NCD can also be downloaded here
Heartfile’s Communication Campaigns in Pakistan
Heartfile ran popular communication campaigns in its early years of inception, which helped create awareness about risks of NCDs. Click here to view.
Heartfile-Lodhran CVD Prevention Project
Heartfile has established and evaluated the Heartfile-Lodhran CVD Prevention Project, which aimed to develop sustainable and low-resource-setting-sensitive strategies for prevention of NCDs. Funding: Department of International Development, UK (2001-2004). End of project evaluation can be viewed here.
Heartfile has established and evaluated the Heartfile-JC Project, a pilot, which aimed to develop an approach to integrate chronic disease prevention into the work-plan of health providers in the private sector.
Funding: European Union-funded Trust for Voluntary Organizations
WHO PREMISE Study
Heartfile was the principal investigator in Pakistan for the WHO PREMISE Study, a global study aimed at developing models for Prevention of Recurrences of Myocardial Infarction and Stroke and was represented on the Technical Committee of the study.
Funding and Collaboration: WHO Cardiovascular Disease Unit, Geneva.
WHO Risk Management Package
Heartfile was the principal investigator in Pakistan for the WHO Risk Management Package, an international study aimed at testing the suitability of low-resource-setting-sensitive tools for secondary prevention of cardiovascular diseases.
Funding and collaboration: WHO Cardiovascular Disease Unit, Geneva. View publications.
The Riskcorn Study
Heartfile was the principal investigator for the Riskcorn Study: the first case control study to determine risk factors for coronary heart disease in Pakistanis. Collaboration: Guys & St. Thomas’ Hospital, London.
Funding: Pakistan Medical Research Council and Guys & St Thomas’ Hospital, London. View publications. View publications.
The INTERHEART study
Hearfile was an investigator in Pakistan for the INTERHEART study, a global study of risk factors in acute myocardial infarction, Conducted by McMaster University, Canada.
WHO Global (Price of Chronic Disease Medicines) Drug Survey
Heartfile was the principal investigator in Pakistan for the WHO Global (Price of Chronic Disease Medicines) Drug Survey, an international study to assess barriers to the use of medicines for secondary prevention of chronic disease.
Funding and collaboration: WHO Cardiovascular Disease Unit, Geneva. View related publication.
Non-Communicable Diseases – Resources
The National Action Plan on NCDs
The process of developing the plan
The illustrated capacity building guide
Paper describing the design