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BMJ Glob Health ; 7(8)2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2001827


BACKGROUND: While an estimated 70%-75% of the health workforce are women, this is not reflected in the leadership roles of most health organisations-including global decision-making bodies such as the World Health Assembly (WHA). METHODS: We analysed gender representation in WHA delegations of Member States, Associate Members and Observers (country/territory), using data from 10 944 WHA delegations and 75 815 delegation members over 1948-2021. Delegates' information was extracted from WHO documentation. Likely gender was inferred based on prefixes, pronouns and other gendered language. A gender-to-name algorithm was used as a last resort (4.6%). Time series of 5-year rolling averages of the percentage of women across WHO region, income group and delegate roles are presented. We estimated (%) change ±SE of inferred women delegation members at the WHA per year, and estimated years±SE until gender parity from 2010 to 2019 across regions, income groups, delegate roles and countries. Correlations with these measures were assessed with countries' gender inequality index and two Worldwide Governance indicators. RESULTS: While upwards trends could be observed in the percentage of women delegates over the past 74 years, men remained over-represented in most WHA delegations. Over 1948-2021, 82.9% of delegations were composed of a majority of men, and no WHA had more than 30% of women Chief Delegates (ranging from 0% to 30%). Wide variation in trends over time could be observed across different geographical regions, income groups and countries. Some countries may take over 100 years to reach gender parity in their WHA delegations, if current estimated trends continue. CONCLUSION: Despite commitments to gender equality in leadership, women remain gravely under-represented in global health governance. An intersectional approach to representation in global health governance, which prioritises equity in participation beyond gender, can enable transformative policymaking that fosters transparent, accountable and just health systems.

Global Health , Leadership , Female , Health Workforce , Humans , Income , Male , Policy Making
BMJ Open ; 11(11): e053392, 2021 11 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1515304


OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this systematic review is to explore whether health equity audits (HEAs) are effective in improving the equity of service provision and reducing health inequalities. DESIGN: Three databases (Ovid Medline, Embase, Web of Science) and grey literature (Opengrey, Google Scholar) were systematically searched for articles published after 2000, reporting on the effectiveness of HEA. Title and abstracts were screened according to an eligibility criteria to identify studies which included a full audit cycle (eg, initial equity analysis, service changes and review). Data were extracted from studies meeting the eligibility criteria after full text review and risk of bias assessed using the ROBINS-I tool. RESULTS: The search strategy identified 596 articles. Fifteen records were reviewed in full text and three records were included in final review. An additional HEA report was identified through contact with an author. Three different HEAs were included from one peer-reviewed journal article, two published reports and one unpublished report (n=4 records on n=3 HEAs). This included 102 851 participants and over 148 practices/pharmacies (information was not recorded for all records). One study reviewed health equity impacts of HEA implementation in key indicators for coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Two HEAs explored Stop Smoking Services on programme access and equity. All reported some degree of reduction in health inequalities compared with prior HEA implementation. However, impact of HEA implementation compared with other concurrent programmes and initiatives was unclear. All included studies were judged to have moderate to serious risk of bias. CONCLUSIONS: There is an urgent need to identify effective interventions to address health inequalities. While HEAs are recommended, we only identified limited weak evidence to support their use. More evidence is needed to explore whether HEA implementation can reduce inequalities and which factors are influencing effectiveness. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: The study was registered prior to its conduction in PROSPERO (CRD 42020218642).

Coronary Disease , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 , Health Equity , Pharmacies , Humans
J Epidemiol Community Health ; 2021 Jan 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1015711