South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC)
Building a healthy nation through research and innovation

Media statement

28 February 2014

Approaching deadline for individual abstracts

Health Systems and Policy Research (HSPR) is a multidisciplinary field that is growing in scope, relevance and agency.  Using a range of scientific methods, HSPR explores the complex relationship between health systems “hardware” – such as human resources, financing and information systems – and health systems “software” such as ideas and interpersonal relationships, within particular policy and socio-political contexts1.  This line of endeavour attempts to understand how health systems and policies might be more effective in achieving improved health, locally and globally. 

A typical HSPR project might ask how health workers experience the implementation of a particular policy (e.g. the allocation of medical supplies) and how that experience is translated into the care received by patients (e.g. health workers concerned about a shortage of medical supplies might not use sufficient bandages to dress a wound).  HSPR projects might also explore the relationships between macro-level policy and micro-level outcomes (e.g. the relationship between global-level health financing decisions and rural women’s ability to access care).

The Third Global Symposium on Health Systems Research is currently in preparation and the deadline for submissions of an individual abstract for an oral or a poster presentation is Monday, 3 March 2014

Individual abstracts should focus on sharing knowledge around the four field-building dimensions within health systems research.  Symposium organisers are particularly interested in research that strengthens people-centred health systems; research that generates knowledge of and engages people in health systems; strategies for developing capacity that is required to conduct people-centred health policy and systems research, and lastly, research or original experience of learning communities and knowledge-translation platforms that strengthen health systems.

In an effort to foster diversity in the programme, individuals whose abstracts are accepted will be permitted to present once in an organised session, once as an oral presenter and once as a poster presenter. Within the programme, individual abstracts accepted for oral presentation will be grouped into sessions. These sessions will be actively facilitated and may be managed in various ways (that is, they will not necessarily entail a set of short presentations).

The Symposium will take place in Cape Town from 30 September to 3 October 2014.  It is co-sponsored by Health Systems Global and the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research/World Health Organization in conjunction with a local organising consortium of which the South African Medical Research Council’s Health Systems Research Unit is a key contributing member.  Other key contributing members include the University of Cape Town, the University of the Western Cape, Health Systems Trust and Stellenbosch University. The Symposium is supported by the South African Department of Health.

1 Sheikh K, Gilson L, Agyepong IA, Hanson K, Ssengooba F, et al. (2011) Building the Field of Health Policy and Systems Research: Framing the Questions. PLoS Med 8(8): e1001073. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001073

Technical Enquiries
Karen Daniels
South African Medical Research Council
Health Systems Research Unit
Tel: +27 21 938 0301 / 0454; Mobile: 082 538 7184

Media Facilitation
Aziel Gangerdine
Head of Corporate Communications
South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC)
Tel: +27 21 938 0697; Mobile: +27 71 866 9887

Contact the Webmaster
Last updated:
29 February, 2016
 Developed by Corporate & Marketing Communications, South African Medical Research Council
   Intranet login