Publications

    Madore A, Rosenberg J, Dreisbach T, Weintraub R. Positive Outlier: Health Outcomes in Kerala, India over Time. Harvard Business Publishing. 2018.Abstract

    This case explores how Kerala, India developed a reputation for exemplary health outcomes despite low per capita income. After providing historical background, including the social, political, and health system factors that contributed to a culture of seeking health care, the case describes Kerala’s health system and outcomes. The case describes how the fiscal decline in the latter half of the 20th century led to decreased spending on public services, including health, creating an opening for private-sector providers to meet a growing share of the demand for health services and the impact on out-of-pocket health spending. Readers must think about how emerging health threats such as noncommunicable diseases should be addressed in the 21st century, including the health department’s response and a new initiative to increase capacity in the public health sector, including efforts to improve the quality and reliability of health data through an electronic medical record system. The case concludes with Additional Chief Secretary for Health and Family Welfare Rajeev Sadanandan wondering if the new strategy will succeed and if Kerala can maintain its status as a positive outlier in health for the decades to come.

    Teaching Note available for registered faculty through Harvard Business Publishing and the Case Centre.

    Learning Objectives: to appreciate the relationships between education, literacy, and health; what the components of a health system are; the limitations of health indicators as measures of a national health system’s effectiveness; and, the challenges of sustaining demand and maintaining the supply and quality of public health services over time.

    Key words: health care policy, universal health care, demand generation, health care delivery, health system, health outcomes, social determinants of health

    Rosenberg J, Dreisbach T, Donovan C, Weintraub R. Positive Outlier: Sri Lanka’s Health Outcomes over Time. Harvard Business Publishing. 2018.Abstract

    This case describes the development and structure of Sri Lanka’s health system, which has yielded health outcomes far superior to any of its South Asian neighbors. The case highlights factors supporting the health outcomes, including the availability of free health services to all citizens, government investment in the health workforce, and the care-seeking behavior of Sri Lankan citizens. After providing an overview of Sri Lanka’s history, geography, demographics, and economy, the case traces the evolution of the public sector health system from the precolonial era through the period of heavy investment in health from the 1930s through 1950s and on into the 21st century. The case describes the management of the system and the relationship between the national health ministry and provincial and local governments. It examines how health professionals are trained and deployed throughout the system, the supply chain, and financing. The case then examines the growing private health sector, its relationship with the public sector, and the role of innovation. After a summary of the country’s health outcomes, readers are pushed to think about what it will take to address the changing epidemiological burden to continue to boast exemplary health outcomes and provide quality health care to those who need it.

    ​​​​​​Teaching Note available to registered faculty through Harvard Business Publishing or the Case Centre.

    A productive class discussion will allow readers to appreciate the capabilities of a public payer system to improve the health of the population; the influence of the private sector in a “single payer system” and the downstream effects on demand and supply of services; the return on investment for a country offering free public medical and nursing education; and the relationship between literacy, demand generation, and health outcomes.

    Keywords: Universal health care, health care delivery, health system, health outcomes, social determinants of health.

    Cuneo CN, Rosenberg J, Madore A, Weintraub R. Improving Mental Health Services for Survivors of Sexual Violence in the DRC. Harvard Business Publishing. 2017.Abstract

    This case explores the implementation and evaluation of mental health treatment for victims of conflict-related gender-based violence (GBV) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) by the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a humanitarian organization based in New York City. Following the contextual background, the case traces the IRC’s work developing a psychosocial support program for GBV survivors starting in 2002. When the Applied Mental Health Research Group (AMHR) at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health evaluates the program in 2008, the IRC begins to consider the potential for its work to inform similar interventions. In 2011, the IRC team collaborated with AMHR to implement two concurrent randomized control trials (RCTs): one on the mental health effects of Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) and the other on the mental health and financial impact of a social and economic empowerment intervention called the Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA). While the time and resources that went into completing the trials expanded the monitoring and evaluation capacity within the IRC and added important evidence to the lean body of global mental health literature, conducting the studies stretched the IRC’s local staff thin and required clarification of priorities and purpose. Had the RCTs had been worth it, and for whom? How could the study findings contribute to improving services for vulnerable populations in the region and beyond? 

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Theory of Change
    Source: Study of Effectiveness of a Social-Economic Intervention for Sexual Violence Survivors in Eastern DRC, November 2014.

    Theory of Change 2
    Source: Group Cognitive Processing Therapy: A Specialized Mental Health Intervention that Supports Improvements in Well-being for Sexual Violence Survivors. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, International Rescue Committee.

    Learning Objectives: A productive class discussion will allow students to appreciate the challenge of meeting human resource needs to provide mental health care, the complexity of implementation and empirical study of mental health services, and the ethics and challenges of conducting randomized controlled trials in conflict settings.

    Keywords: public health, human resources, health care delivery, information management, mental health, scale-up, resource-limited settings, health care policy, data collection, public administration

    Rosenberg J, Cole C, May M, Weintraub R. Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision in Nyanza Province, Kenya (Condensed Version). The Lancet Commission on Global Surgery. 2015.Abstract

    This case traces the development of the voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) campaign in Nyanza Province, Kenya as it transformed from the subject of a randomized clinical trial into national policy. After providing some background on the cultural, political, and scientific context surrounding male circumcision, the case traces the PEPFAR-funded implementers' advances in delivering male circumcision in Nyanza. It examines the various delivery models used in Nyanza and the evolution of the relationship between implementers as well as on the development of the national strategic plan for VMMC released in 2009. The case ends with the implementers having come together successfully for two rapid, aggressive, 30-day implementation campaigns and the head of Kenya's National AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Control Programme wrestling with how to make such campaigns sustainable and what lessons from the campaign to pass on to the national program. This is a condensed version of the case Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision in Nyanza Province, Kenya.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Mobile Service Delivery Model
    (A) Group counseling on male circumcision; (B) mobile circumcision counseling site; and (C) circumcision being conducted in tented delivery site. Source: Nyanza Reproductive Health Society.

    Learning Objectives: To understand how a randomized controlled trial may be translated into a large-scale public health program; how a surgical campaign was designed and implemented for rapid impact; the role of national and international collaboration in large-scale health delivery; and the ethical tradeoffs that arise in large-scale public health programs.

    Supporting Content: This is a condensed version of the case Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision in Nyanza Province, Kenya.

    Keywords: Project management, AIDS, policy, supply and demand, partnerships, strategy, innovation

    Talbot JR, Cole C, May M, Weintraub R. Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision in Nyanza Province, Kenya. Harvard Business Publishing. 2012.Abstract

    This case traces the development of the voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) campaign in Nyanza Province, Kenya as it transformed from the subject of a randomized clinical trial into national policy. After providing some background on the cultural, political, and scientific context surrounding male circumcision, the case traces the PEPFAR-funded implementers' advances in delivering male circumcision in Nyanza. It examines the various delivery models used in Nyanza and the evolution of the relationship between implementers as well as on the development of the national strategic plan for VMMC released in 2009. The case ends with the implementers having come together successfully for two rapid, aggressive, 30-day implementation campaigns and the head of Kenya's National AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Control Programme wrestling with how to make such campaigns sustainable and what lessons from the campaign to pass on to the national program.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Mobile Service Delivery Model
    (A) Group counseling on male circumcision; (B) mobile circumcision counseling site; and (C) circumcision being conducted in tented delivery site. Source: Nyanza Reproductive Health Society.

    Learning Objectives: To understand how a randomized controlled trial may be translated into a large-scale public health program; how a surgical campaign was designed and implemented for rapid impact; the role of national and international collaboration in large-scale health delivery; and the ethical tradeoffs that arise in large-scale public health programs.

    Supporting Content: There is a shorter version of this case titled Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision in Nyanza Province, Kenya (Condensed Version).

    Keywords: Project management, AIDS, policy, supply and demand, partnerships, strategy, innovation

    Charumilind S, Jain SH, Rhatigan J. HIV in Thailand: The 100% Condom Program. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    Thailand’s 100% Condom Program, which was implemented nationwide in 1991, is widely credited with averting a generalized HIV epidemic in that nation. This case traces the development and implementation of Thailand’s 100% Condom Program including its conception, the development of a pilot program in one province, and the program’s early regional expansion. It frames these events within the country’s general political, economic, and health situation; the epidemiology and public perception of HIV/AIDS; the government’s early HIV policy; and the economics of the commercial sex industry. The case explores how public health interventions are designed, refined, and spread. The case ends in early 1991 with the program’s founder trying to find ways to spread the successful regional program nationwide.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Sex establishments in Patpong Area, including go-go bars and members clubs
    Sex establishments in Patpong Area, including go-go bars and members clubs. Source: "HIV in Thailand: The 100% Condom Program" case.

    Learning Objectives: To understand the principles behind the design of disease prevention programs and to examine how successful programs align incentives among various stakeholders to achieve their objectives.

    Supporting Content: This case has a supplementary summary of history and next steps, titled The 100% Condom Program: Part B.

    Keywords: HIV prevention, stakeholder alignment, harm reduction

     
    Bitton A, Talbot JR, Clarke L. Tobacco Control in South Africa. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case reviews the policy changes in tobacco control in post-apartheid South Africa from 1994 to 1996 under the leadership of Minister of Health Dr. Nkosazana Zuma. After providing contextual information on South Africa, including historical, demographic, social, and health information, the case delves into the history of tobacco and of global tobacco control efforts. The case then details the history of tobacco in South Africa, including data collection, epidemiology, early control efforts, and the policy efforts of the mid-1990s. The case describes the African National Congress (ANC)’s policy victories under Zuma’s leadership. Knowing that tobacco disproportionately affected certain racial and minority groups, Zuma made tobacco control a top priority. With the support of the President, local tobacco experts, and anti-tobacco advocates, Zuma worked hard to break previous connections between the government and the tobacco industry and to reduce smoking. The case ends in 1996 when smoking prevalence had declined to 32% from 34% in 1995, but South Africa still had one of the highest levels in the developing world. As the ANC was preparing to enact the new Constitution that reinforced health promotion, Zuma had to determine what her next move would be for tobacco control and how she would prioritize it with the other health needs of the country.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Tobacco Control as Health Promotion
    Tobacco Control as Health Promotion. Source: Reddy, SP and Swart D. Unraveling Health Promotion: A Framework for Action: Tobacco Control. MRC: 1998. (Exhibit 8 in "Tobacco Control in South Africa" case.)

    Learning Objectives: To understand the political and economic forces that impact tobacco control legislation in a country undergoing an epidemiological shift, the role of research and data, and the value of health communication, chronic disease prevention, and advocacy in health care delivery.

    Supporting Content: This case has a supplementary summary of history and next steps, titled Tobacco Control in South Africa: Next Steps.

    Keywords: Chronic disease prevention, advocacy, health policy, tobacco control

     

    Bitton A, Taranto L, Talbot JR, Kadar E. Tobacco Control in South Africa: Next Steps. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case is a supplement to Tobacco Control in South Africa, which reviews the policy changes in tobacco control in post-apartheid South Africa from 1994 to 1996 under the leadership of Minister of Health Dr. Nkosazana Zuma. This case explains what happened after 1996, the steps Zuma took to continue her fight against tobacco (including expanding research capacity, getting increases in excise taxes passed, and pushing national legislation through) and what happened after her departure in 1999.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Relationship between Excise Tax Rate and Cigarette Consumption in South Africa
    Relationship between Excise Tax Rate and Cigarette Consumption in South Africa. Source: van Walbeek C, WHO. Tobacco Excise Taxation in South Africa. (Exhibit 2 in "Tobacco Control in South Africa: Next Steps" case.)

    Learning Objectives: To understand the political and economic forces and the role of research and data in implementing tobacco control legislation in a country undergoing an epidemiological shift, and the value of health communication, chronic disease prevention, and advocacy in health care delivery.

    Supporting Content: This case is the supplement to Tobacco Control in South Africa.

    Keywords: Chronic disease prevention, advocacy, health policy, tobacco control

    Talbot JR, Bohrer M, Rhatigan J. Iran’s Triangular Clinic. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case traces the development and implementation of Iran’s Triangular Clinic, an innovative health care delivery program, from its beginning as a site for counseling HIV-infected individuals to an integrated facility offering comprehensive HIV, sexually transmitted disease (STD), and drug addiction treatment, care, and support. The case examines the need for such services among the marginalized population that the first clinic served within the historical, political, economic, and health context of Iran and, specifically, in Kermanshah province, where the project begins. The case raises the question of how the clinic model might be integrated into primary health care and replicated throughout the country as part of the Iranian Ministry of Health’s Integrated Health Program.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Triangular clinic model
    Triangular clinic model. Source: World Health Organization and Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean, Best Practice in HIV/AIDS Prevention and Care for Drug Abusers: The Triangular Clinic in Kermanshah, Islamic Republic of Iran 2004, WHO: Cairo.

    Learning Objectives: To examine how health care delivery organizations can configure their services to deliver high value health care to the populations they serve and to understand methods to engage marginalized populations in order to increase their access to and demand for health services.

    Supporting Content: The sequel to this case is titled Scaling up Iran's Triangular Clinic.

    Keywords: Marginalized populations, comprehensive HIV prevention, harm reduction

     

    Blumenthal D, Ellner A, Jain S, Rhatigan J. Polio Elimination in Uttar Pradesh. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case describes key elements of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative’s (GPEI) campaign in India and explores the challenges faced in eliminating polio from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. Throughout the 1990s, India began implementing coordinated national polio immunization days to supplement routine immunization in health clinics in an effort to eliminate polio from the nation. The case provides contextual information about India and Uttar Pradesh as well as polio and polio vaccines. It then examines the roles of key partners in the GPEI, including Rotary International, the World Health Organization (WHO), the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and UNICEF, and it describes the local operational challenges of the mass immunization campaign in Uttar Pradesh. The campaign has been unable to eliminate polio from this state, and the program leaders grapple with ways to improve the campaign’s performance there.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Comic Book, Crusade Against Polio, Front Cover
    Comic Book, Crusade Against Polio, Front Cover. Source: Rotary International.

    Learning Objectives: To understand the political and operational challenges of implementing a nation-wide disease elimination program and to appreciate how local, contextual factors influence the delivery of health interventions.

    Keywords: Polio elimination and immunization campaigns, supply chain management, global collaboration