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Healthc Policy. 2010 Aug;6(1):e109-26.

Development of health policy and systems research in Nigeria: lessons for developing countries' evidence-based health policy making process and practice.

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  • 1Lecturer/Research Director, Health Policy & Systems Research Project, Department of Medical Microbiology/Parasitology, Faculty of Clinical Medicine, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki, Nigeria.


Health policy and systems research (HPSR), which aims to produce reliable and rigorous evidence to inform the many critical decisions that must be made about health systems, is a new concept in Nigeria. In this study, policy makers and other stakeholders in the health sector identified the challenges and the potential intervention strategies to HPSR evidence use in policy making in Nigeria. The major challenges identified included capacity constraints at individual and organizational levels, communication gaps and poor networking between policy makers and researchers, and the non-involvement of healthcare recipients in identifying and planning care delivery needs. The main solutions suggested included promotion of strategies to encourage partnership between researchers and policy makers, improvement of staff incentives and facilities for research activities, improved budgetary provision for research, and sustainable institutional capacity development. These strategies have been shown to improve evidence-based policy making in developed countries and are likely to produce better outcomes in the developing world.

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