About the Learning Collaborative
Over the past decade, many low- and middle-income countries have made expanding health coverage a national priority. The push toward Universal Health Coverage (UHC) has catalyzed this effort, yet progress to date has been uneven and often excludes poor, vulnerable, and otherwise marginalized individuals. This is partly due to challenges in effectively identifying and reaching these groups, especially in countries characterized by large, heterogeneous populations with a high proportion of informal sector workers.
Targeting mechanisms represent powerful ways to maximize the impact of social programs by directing limited resources to those who stand to benefit most. Robust targeting is an important component of UHC schemes that effectively reach poor populations. Many JLN countries have experimented with various targeting mechanisms in the health sector and in social protection more broadly, but the design, implementation, and maintenance of these programs present significant challenges, and often requires health officials to work with colleagues from other sectors.
The Learning Collaborative on Population Targeting (LCPT) focuses on actionable components of effective targeting systems, with the intention to identify potential co-produced outputs and support for in-country implementation of one or more interventions. Facilitated by Aceso Global (www.acesoglobal.org), the LCPT establishes a platform for JLN members from 11 countries to learn through peer exchange, and support each other to improve the design, implementation and maintenance of effective targeting systems for health. Specifically, participants identified two key themes as the focus of the Collaborative’s work:
- Institutional coordination between health and non-health agencies on population targeting
- Data linkage between health and non-health agencies for population targeting
After meetings throughout 2021, the Learning Collaborative on Population Targeting has now produced an extensive resource to guide health leaders and practitioners to improve their population targeting systems against these two themes: A Health Practitioner’s Handbook and Toolbox for Identifying the Poor and Vulnerable.This includes a best practice guide, system diagnostics, implementation case studies and over 30 individual implementation tools. You can access these outputs here.
Independent Health Systems Consultant Associate Director, Aceso Global
Analyst, Aceso Global