The 11th AAAH Webinar Series 2020 “Addressing Health Care Workers’ Challenges in Response to COVID-19: sharing experiences and drawing countries’ lessons”


  • 18.00- 19.30 HRS. (BKK)


  • The Asia Pacific Action Alliance on Human Resources for Health (AAAH)
  • World Health Organization Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office (WHO EMRO)
  • United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
  • Asian Development Bank (ADB)

Webinar 1: Mobilizing surge capacity of health care workers in response to COVID-19 pandemic  

Episode 2:  Mobilizing surge capacity for diagnostic and clinical management

The rapid increase in the numbers of cases and their geographical spread has created enormous demand and stress on health systems and health workers worldwide.  Health workers are at the forefront of the response to COVID-19, both as service providers and as high-risk groups for contracting the disease. The rapidly increasing workload has resulted in shortages in the health workforce in general, and in certain specialties in particular, such as intensive care unit physicians and nurses, infectious diseases specialists, pulmonologists, respiratory therapists, laboratory professionals and more in addition to field epidemiologists and public health specialists who are involved in the public health response.  The acute onset of the epidemic has meant little time for adequate training and has led to limited capacities  of  health workforce involved in the diagnosis and management of identified COVID-19 cases besides the shortages in equipment (e.g., ventilators) and supplies (e.g., PPEs, medicines) which are required to allow health staff to provide the adequate care to patients

Most countries have already been facing an overall shortage of health workers, along with skill-mix imbalances, geographical maldistribution and a shortage of specialized health workers.  The session will address

  • Health workforce shortages faced during the COVID -19 response
  • How surge capacities were mobilized, approaches and implications of mobilizing surge capacities
  • Capacity building implications for existing and additionally mobilized health workers
  • Financial implications of addressing health workforce shortage
  • Long term implications in terms of required capacities and competencies of future health workers.

*The Webinar is presented in association with PMAC 2021 the conference on COVID-19 Advancing Towards an Equitable and Healthy World

  • To identify gaps in health care workers involved in the diagnosis and clinical management of COVID-19 cases and the challenges encountered to mobilizing surge capacities.
  • To share global and national experiences in planning and implementing mobilization of surge capacities of health care workers required for diagnostic and clinical management at various
  • To formulate policy options for countries to facilitate enhancing surge capacities, for diagnosis and clinical management of future outbreaks and pandemics, as part of building back better resilient health systems.