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What is workforce development?

Developing capacity and capability of the health workforce is critical for sustainable and functional public health surveillance and response at all levels of the health system. A functional workforce is needed for the effective implementation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) and to carry out essential public health functions. These are indispensable set of actions under the primary responsibility of the state, that are fundamental for achieving the goal of public health.



Programme Scope


Given the variations and unique context of each UKOT, this new workstream will be developed in collaboration with each UKOT. The programme will work with the UKOTs in developing a public health workforce strategy based on current and future needs based on an understanding of local priorities, identifying training and development needs, developing pathways and agreements to existing workforce opportunities, or developing/collaborating on bespoke initiatives to meet needs. 

This workstream will link with other relevant workforce development initiatives (e.g. CARPHA, PAHO), as well as established programmes in England/UK if appropriate (e.g. Director of Public Health leadership scheme, public health apprenticeships), and developing bespoke initiatives where required. 


Workstream Focus

This workstream will work with UKOTs in training and retaining a competent and sustainable public health and health workforce to respond to the needs of its population. The underlying aims of the workstream will be to: 

  • develop public health leadership; 
  • build public health professional and technical skills and knowledge; 
  • drive sustainable public health practice change; 
  • embed system change at organisation and personal/team level
  • care to public health and healthcare workforce


Example Projects


  • Joint UKHSA, NHS England and UK-Med workshop in Montserrat focused on Workforce Transformation. The aims, solutions, challenges, and next steps can be found in this report. 
  • Collaboration with the Ministry of Health to develop and launch the Montserrat Care Certificate. This is a framework to ensure that all support workers have the same introductory skills, knowledge, and behaviours to provide compassionate, safe and high-quality care in their workplace settings
  • Pilot implementation of the WHO Roadmap to building the public health and emergency workforce in Montserrat. 

Key Resources





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