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Preparing the Health Workforce: Closing the Staffing Gap

Published on: 26 November, 2017

In 2014, following an eighteen month health workforce assessment, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services identified 1,256 new positions within the civil health sector. Of these, 553 new posts were immediately approved by the cabinet with the aim of addressing the staffing gap and skills shortage.

The assessment was conducted using the Workforce Indicator of Staffing Need (WISN) and the Service Targets Staff Projection Tool (STSPT), as a joint initiative between the Fiji Health Sector Support Program (FHSSP), the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and World Health Organisation (WHO). It was estimated that the new posts would cost approximately FJD$ 34.9million over the next ten years.

More recently in the 2017-2018 national budget, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services received an increase of $77.2million to accommodate the recruitment of additional doctors, nurses and health workers. This was in order to maintain the WHO threshold of 23 doctors, nurses and midwives per 10,000 population, so as to deliver essential maternal and child health services.

Taking additional measures to close the gap, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services announced a consolidated list of vacant and new positions within civil health sector. Click here to view the 2018 vacancy list.

These positions will be filled using Fiji’s Open Merit Based Recruitment and Selection Guidelines. The Guidelines create transparent and open competition based on eligibility and qualifications, ensuring that the most appropriate applicant is appointed. The system also encourages and assists young highly qualified professional to apply for higher posts.

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Edited by Margaret Goydych

For more information, contact Fazleen Nisha, country coordinator for Fiji (email here).