Publications

    Rosenberg J, Ahmad I, Sharara N, Weintraub R. Improving Maternal Health by Addressing Stockouts: Integrating the Private Sector into the Public Health Supply Chain in Senegal. Harvard Business Publishing. 2021.Abstract

    This case traces the development of a series of initiatives to intended to reduce stockouts of family planning commodities in Senegal’s public health system and the eventual scale up of the redesigned supply chain to include additional commodities and its transfer of management to the government. After providing some background on the history of Senegal, including its governance and health system, the case explores early efforts to overhaul the supply chain in the country and reproductive health efforts. It then describes the Gates Foundation’s involvement and how the relationship between family planning and supply chain management came to light. The Gates Foundation, along with others, supported the launch of the Informed Push Model with Third Party Logisticians (IPM-3PL), which proved to reduce stockouts dramatically. Despite significant initial support from both government ministries and international donor agencies, as the program scaled IPM-3PL did not survive the transition to a fully government-run model, and the program was eventually discontinued in 2019 after two attempts to hand over the program to Senegal’s National Supply Pharmacy (Pharmacie Nationale d'Approvisionnement; PNA), the government agency in charge of distribution of medicines. The case ends with the director of the PNA contemplating what was next for Senegal and what she could tell others who had been so closely watching the country as an example.

    Learning Objectives:

    This case documents the need for and process to overhaul Senegal’s public health supply chain. A productive class discussion will allow students to appreciate the following:

    1. The benefits and challenges of transitioning aspects of a public health supply chain between push and pull models
    2. The trade-offs of private sector integration in public health supply chains
    3. How the management and financing structure of a public health supply chain impacts its efficacy and scalability
    4. The need for cross-sector and intragovernmental collaboration for effective supply chain management and the relationship between policy and last mile delivery

    Supply Chain Scenarios

    Keywords: supply chain management, private-public partnership, maternal health, third party logisticians, informed push model, scale up, distribution

    Wachter K, Talbot JR, Weintraub R. Partners In Health in Neno District, Malawi. Harvard Business Publishing. 2013.Abstract

    Set in Neno District, Malawi from 2007–2012, the case focuses on the economic impact of investing in health care infrastructure. It examines management decisions that leaders of Abwenzi Pa Za Umoyo (APZU) and its founding organization—Partners In Health (PIH)—made as they supported the Government of Malawi in building a hospital and scaling up the delivery of APZU clinical and social programs across Neno district. The case highlights how a non-governmental organization can navigate the politics and local culture to improve Malawi’s health care system in close partnership with a strong, protocol-driven government. The case begins with Ophelia Dahl, co-founder and executive director of Partners In Health, reflecting on her December 2011 trip to Neno, nearly four years after her first visit. She observed signs of progress unrelated to health—bank branches had opened in town, a new road had been built, and the market had expanded dramatically. Ultimately, the case explores what this demonstrates about the value of her organization’s investments in health.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Neno rural hospital
    In the foreground: One-story original structures of Neno Rural Hospital used for outpatient and maternity services. In back: Two-story building constructed by APZU and partners used for inpatient wards, meetings, computer use, laboratory work, and government offices. Source: Keri Wachter, 2012.

    Learning Objectives: To understand the challenges of hiring and retaining local and expat staff, the complexity of an international NGO partnering with the government to improve health care, how leadership acumen and approaches impact scaling up and sustaining health care delivery, the relationship between the district hospital and the local economy, and how to assess impact beyond health measures.

    Keywords: Global health, social equality, project management, business and government relations, partnerships, strategy, economic development, health care policy, health care delivery, public health, human resource management, developing countries, innovation

    May M, Rhatigan J. BRAC’s Tuberculosis Program: Pioneering DOTS Treatment for TB in Rural Bangladesh. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case examines the development of a tuberculosis (TB) treatment program in Bangladesh by the non-governmental organization, BRAC, from 1984 to 2006. After providing background about Bangladesh, the burden of TB there, and BRAC, the case examines how this program was piloted and grew to cover a population of 80 million people. It details how BRAC was able to create a TB control program that utilized community health workers to perform most of its essential functions including case finding, directly-observed therapy, identification of complications, and record keeping. The case concludes with a brief summary of BRAC’s expansion to Afghanistan and recently, Africa, and asks the reader to consider the feasibility of this TB care model in other contexts and in other conditions, such as HIV/AIDS.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Timeline of BRAC TB Program Expansions
    Timeline of BRAC TB Program Expansions. Source: From One to Many: Scaling Up Health Programs in Low-Income Countries. Edited by Richard A Cash, A Mushtaque R. Chowdhury, George B. Smith, and Faruque Ahmed (2010). Ch 13. Islam A and May MA. Decentralized Management in the Expansion of BRAC's Rural Tuberculosis Program (DOTS). Pgs. 207-214. (Exhibit 3 in "BRAC’s Tuberculosis Program: Pioneering DOTS Treatment for TB in Rural Bangladesh" case.)

    Learning Objectives: To understand effective strategies for effectively engaging community health workers to deliver complex medical and public health interventions to large populations in low resource settings.

    Supporting Content: The sequel to this case is titled Tuberculosis in Dhaka: BRAC’s Urban TB Program.

    Keywords: Community health workers, tuberculosis control, rural nongovernmental organizations, social enterprise

    May M, Cash R, Rhatigan J. Tuberculosis in Dhaka: BRAC’s Urban TB Program. Harvard Business Publishing. 2011.Abstract

    This case examines BRAC’s experience expanding its rural TB program to the urban environment of Dhaka between 2002 and 2008. The case provides background information about Dhaka and describes what TB services existed at the time. The case then describes the expansion of BRAC’s TB program into Dhaka and details innovations in the Urban program. Students should gain an understanding of how these program modifications were a response to the specific challenges the program faced in the urban setting. The case allows an exploration of how successful health care delivery program adapt to new environments.

    Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.

    Map of Dhaka
    Map of Dhaka. Source: Available at http://www.urpnissues.com/webpage/maps/Districts/13.GIF. (Exhibit 1 in "Tuberculosis in Dhaka: BRAC’s Urban TB Program" case.)

    Learning Objectives: To understand how a successful health care delivery program that is uniquely tailored to a particular setting can adapt its operations in a new environment.

    Supporting Content: This case is a sequel to BRAC’s Tuberculosis Program: Pioneering DOTS Treatment for TB in Rural Bangladesh

    Keywords: Service delivery innovation, tuberculosis control, urban nongovernmental organizations