World Health & Population

World Health & Population 16(1) September 2015 : 3-3.doi:10.12927/whp.2015.24310

From the Editor-in-Chief

Judith Shamian

Ambitious objectives like Universal Health Coverage (UHC), Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), poverty reduction and others items on the global agenda will only be achieved if we have the right combination of human resources. We will require a workforce with the appropriate preparation operating in proper working conditions within local, national and global policies that align limited resources to achieve these global agendas and goals. 

This issue of World Health and Population (WHP) with Dr. Marilyn A. DeLuca from New York University as the guest editor, clearly demonstrates that there are multiple practices and clear evidence that can point us towards a different narrative to help us reach the goals set by the various global agendas.

In two recent papers “No Global Health without Human Resources for Health (HRH)” (Shamian et al. 2015a) and “Human Resources for Health: A New Narrative” (Shamian et al. 2015b) my colleagues and I have discussed the challenges the global community is facing in HHR. In both of these publications, we emphasize the need for a new narrative which calls upon governments to examine and plan HRH in the context of both social and health needs. Further, we describe the economic impact that employment in the healthcare sector can have in strengthening the local economy as well as household incomes – lifting people from poverty and providing them with disposable income, that can be targeted to healthier social and physical health. The healthcare sector is also a significant workforce that can empower women and provide opportunities for good jobs.

The other key agenda that seriously needs to be addressed is how to reorient the current preoccupation with hospital and medical care to an emphasis on primary healthcare and interprofessional teams that are embedded within and working closely with their communities.

UHC, SDG, poverty reduction and more are within in our reach if we consider the new narrative of HRH. The papers in this issue go a long way in shedding light on what the possibilities are for a “new narrative.”

Dr. Judith Shamian RN, PhD Editor-in-Chief 

About the Author(s)

Dr. Judith Shamian RN, PhD Editor-in-Chief
International Council of Nurses
Twitter: @judithshamian


Shamian, J., G. Tomblin Murphy, A. Elliott Rose and L. Jeffs. 2015a. “No Global Health without Human Resources for Health (HRH): The Nursing Lens.” Canadian Journal of Nursing Leadership. doi:10.12927/cjnl.2015.24204.

Shamian, J., G. Tomblin Murphy, A. Elliott Rose and L. Jeffs. 2015b “Human Resources for Health: A New Narrative.” Lancet DOI:  


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