SUPPLEMENT LAUNCH! Reimagining health systems for better health and social justice

Health Systems Global (HSG) and Health Policy and Planning (HPP), with the support of the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), are pleased to announce the publication of a Special Supplement – Reimagining health systems for better health and social justice.

This Supplement distills and spotlights some of the rich debates and discussions that took place during the Sixth Global Symposium on Health Systems Research (HSR2020) – Re-imagining health systems for better health and social justice. The symposium, that took place virtually between November 2020 – March 2021, was hosted by HSG and organized in partnership with the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research (AHPSR) and a consortium of organizations from the Eastern Mediterranean Region led by the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government, and in collaboration with the American University of Beirut through its Knowledge to Policy (K2P) Center at the Faculty of Health Sciences.

HSR2020 came at a potentially defining moment as health systems across the world are under tremendous pressure from the COVID-19 pandemic and needing to learn from and collaborate with one another against a shared global threat to health, wellbeing, and social justice. The themes of HSR2020 are critical to our success in addressing COVID-19 – seeking to break down old silos and re-orient health systems to address public health.

This supplement consists of:

  • Six papers presenting original research, accompanied by one editorial
  • Papers contribute to the Symposium’s sub-themes on engaging political forces, engaging technological, data and social innovations, they explore the equity concerns and social injustices
  • Papers present global level, cross-country analysis, as well as studies from the national and local levels
  • Papers applying a variety of methods including systematic literature review and qualitative methods such as key informant interviews and document review

Edited by the co-editor of Health Policy and Planning, Sandra Mounier-Jack, along with Section Editors Neha Batura, Beverly Essue, Mishal Khan and Bruno Marchal, the collection of papers in this supplement demonstrate the tremendous diversity of topics, disciplinary perspectives, and research approaches that make up the field of Health Policy and Systems Research (HPSR). The papers provide useful entry points to the broader discussions and debates which are shaping the field and signal some of the directions in which the field of HPSR is likely to evolve in the future.


  • Editorial: Reimagining Health Systems: Reflections from the 6th Global Symposium on Health Systems Research
  • Original manuscript: Equity in Public Health Spending in Ethiopia: Benefit Incidence Analysis
  • Original manuscript: Political economy and the pursuit of universal health coverage in Ghana: a case of the National Health Insurance Scheme
  • Original manuscript: Embedding Community-based Newborn Care in the Ethiopian health system: lessons from a four-year programme evaluation
  • Original manuscript: Effects of a new health financing scheme on out-of-pocket health expenditure: Findings from a longitudinal household study in Yangon, Myanmar
  • Original manuscript: Organizational structure and human agency within the South African health system: a qualitative case study of health promotion
  • Original manuscript: From effectiveness to sustainability: understanding the continued implementation and impact of CARE’s Community Score Card© social accountability approach in Ntcheu, Malawi

Note: The views expressed in the Special Supplement do not necessarily reflect the views of the IDRC.

Image credit: Toby Phillips Photography

Related content:

  1. Access the supplement here
  2. Play the podcast with authors discussing their papers from the supplement

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