Leading the transformation of health systems in south-eastern Europe


Representatives from selected Member States and experts met in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, on 14 November 2017 to share knowledge and experience of leading health system transformation in countries of the South-eastern Europe Health Network (SEEHN). They focused on building on progress already achieved in many areas.

“There are many lessons learned and experiences to be shared from those who have been successful in implementing large-scale system transformation,” emphasized Dr Hans Kluge, Director of the Division of Health Systems and Public Health at WHO/Europe, in his opening statement.

Policy dialogue to support health system reforms

Large-scale transformation in a complex public services environment can remain elusive unless leaders are able to think creatively and beyond their immediate organizational roles. With this in mind, the policy dialogue contributed to:

  • inspiring public health leaders and building commitment and support for health system reforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina and across south-eastern European Member States;
  • identifying practical steps for successful implementation of priority reforms;
  • strengthening capacity of public health leaders to implement reforms in their public health systems; and
  • increasing capacity and capability for transformational change.

Reflecting on the event, Dr Victor Olsavszky, WHO Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, commented that “the event helped me and other participants realize the extent to which there were in fact plenty achievements for us to be proud of, and these should motivate us to continue”.

WHO organized the dialogue in cooperation with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of the Government of the Republic of Srpska, the Federal Ministry of Health of the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Department of Health and Other Services of the Government of the Brčko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Ministry of Civil Affairs of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and SEEHN.