Canada - New report decries "patchwork" approach to seniors care in Canada This hyperlink will open in a new window.
A new report launched recently by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) shows that many seniors are falling through cracks in terms of accessing care and services due to a lack of a national approach and strategy. The report, The State of Seniors Health Care in Canada, demonstrates the need for a pan-Canadian strategy to address the health needs of Canada's growing senior population.

Ireland - Ministers Launch “A Healthy Weight for Ireland: Obesity Policy and Action Plan 2016-2025″ This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In September 2016, Ireland’s Ministries of Health and Children’s Affairs launched a 10-year action plan that aims to reverse obesity trends and reduce health burdens for individuals, families, the healthcare system and wider society. The plan contains 60 policies to reduce obesity and increase healthy eating and physical activity.

International - Global leaders commit to act on antimicrobial resistance This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Global leaders at the United Nations (UN) have agreed to mount a coordinated campaign to address the causes of antimicrobial resistance. The leaders pledged to develop stronger national systems to monitor and regulate the volume of antimicrobials used in humans, animals and crops, and to increase international cooperation and funding.

International - New global initiative will engage 30 cities by 2030 to close the mental health gap This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Mental Health Now is a global initiative to improve mental health treatment in cities. By 2030, it will engage 30 cities internationally to channel support to mental health projects in three areas: mobilizing youth leadership; expanding innovative programs; and improving the evidence base using city-level indicators.

International - WHO releases country estimates on air pollution exposure and health impact This hyperlink will open in a new window.
A new WHO air quality model confirms that 92% of the world’s population lives in places where air quality levels exceed WHO limits. Information is presented via interactive maps, highlighting areas within countries that exceed WHO limits.

Upcoming Events

Canada - Measuring Value in Theory and the Real World
The Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technology in Health (CADTH) is now accepting abstracts for its 2017 symposium, taking place in Ottawa from April 23 to 25. A wide range of formats is possible, including workshops, panel discussions, and oral and poster presentations. The deadline for submission is October 28, 2016.

France - People at the Centre: Policy Forum on the Future of Health
Modern patients expect to be partners rather than passive recipients of care, however health systems are still designed around providers. This High-Level Forum, taking place at the OECD Conference Centre in Paris on January 16, 2017, will look at how new health technology, institutional and cultural change, measuring what matters to people, and international collaboration can contribute to health systems that enable people to play an active role.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Australia - Australia's health 2016 This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Produced by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), this annual report profiles Australian health issues for the year 2016 in a collection of feature articles and statistical snapshots covering a range of areas. Articles examine health expenditures, major causes of ill health, determinants of health, prevention and treatment, health through the lifecourse, and health system performance.

Canada - Less Ottawa, More Province: How Decentralization is Key to Health Care Reform This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Based on Canada’s experience with welfare reform, this paper by the Fraser Institute recommends the devolution of healthcare decision-making powers to the provinces, with the federal government permitting each province maximum flexibility (within a portable and universal system) to provide and regulate healthcare provision as they see fit.

Canada - Canada's International Health System Performance Over 50 years: Examining Potential Years of Life Lost This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This report and accompanying web tool compare Canada's international performance in premature mortality — measured by potential years of life lost (PYLL) — with the performance of 17 other high-income countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) from 1960 to 2010. The report examines how Canada performed overall on PYLL, how Canadian men and women performed in relation to men and women internationally and how Canada performed on 4 specific causes of premature mortality (cancer, heart disease, stroke, and deaths due to external causes).

UK - Fiscal sustainability and public spending on health This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This paper examines the determinants of health spending in the UK and implications for spending projections. It finds that income effects are a more important driver of health spending than demographic change, as are cost pressures arising from innovation in health technology.

UK - Improving access to mental health services This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Released by the British House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts, this parliamentary report looks at government plans to improve access to mental health services. It finds that staffing costs represent the largest part of any potential enlargement of services, and says the National Health Service (NHS) cannot bear the costs of expanded mental health services on its own.

USA - The Impact of Establishing a Full Scope of Practice for Nurse Practitioners in Michigan This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Michigan state regulations treat Nurse Practitioners (NPs) like registered nurses (RNs), limiting their scope of practice (SOP). This paper examines associations between state NP and SOP regulations and healthcare delivery outcomes, and estimates the impact in Michigan if the SoP of NPs were expanded. The authors conclude that this would improve access to care.

International - The Role of Private Non-Profit Healthcare Organizations in NHS Systems: Implications for the Portuguese Hospital Devolution Program This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The national health systems of many countries are based on the principle of an integrated public sector payer-provider. However, in some systems private non-profit organizations (NPOs) continue to play a role. This paper compares the international position of NPOs in public health systems with Portugal’s ongoing program to devolve public hospitals to NPOs. Evidence on the Portuguese program suggests it improved efficiency and access without sacrificing quality.

International - Working for Health and Growth. Investing in the health workforce This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth was established by the UN in March, 2016, to encourage the creation of millions of new jobs in the health and social care sectors worldwide. It is hoped that this might offset a projected shortfall of 18 million health workers worldwide by 2030. This preliminary report presents recommendations for investment in the global health workforce.