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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


HUICHO, Luis et al. Incentives to attract and retain the health workforce in rural areas of Peru: a qualitative study. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2012, vol.28, n.4, pp.729-739. ISSN 1678-4464.

The study aimed to identify the main incentives for attracting and retaining health workers in rural and remote health facilities in Ayacucho, Peru. In-depth interviews were performed with 80 physicians, obstetricians, nurses, and nurse technicians in the poorest areas (20 per group), plus 11 health managers. Ayacucho lacks systematic policies for attracting and retaining human resources. The main incentives, in order of relevance, were higher wages, opportunities for further training, longer/permanent contracts, better infrastructure and medical equipment, and more staff. Interviewees also mentioned improved housing conditions and food, the opportunity to be closer to family, and recognition by the health system. Health workers and policymakers share perceptions on key incentives to encourage work in rural areas. However, there are also singularities to be considered when designing specific strategies. Public initiatives thus need to be monitored and evaluated closely in order to ensure the intended impact.

Keywords : Health Manpower; Rural Population; Developing Countries.

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