The six WHO health system building blocks contribute to the strengthening of health systems in different ways. Some cross-cutting components, such as health information and leadership and governance provide the basis for the overall policy and regulation of all the other health system blocks. Medical products, vaccines and technologies, and service delivery reflect the immediate outputs of the health system, such as the availability and distribution of care. You cannot have a functioning health system without key components, such as financing and health workforce. Health systems as a whole aim to be responsive to population needs, provide protection against risks associated with ill health and improve population health. In order to achieve this, it's components, the building blocks need to fulfill their goals. For example, good service delivery is a vital element of any health system and is fundamental for population health status along with other factors such as social determinants of health. The precise organization and content of health services will differ from one country to another, but in any well-functioning health system, the network of service delivery should have key characteristics, such as comprehensiveness, whereby a range of health services appropriate to the needs of the target population, including preventative, curative, palliative and rehabilitative services, and health promotion activities is provided. It should be accessible, whereby services are directly and permanently accessible with no undo barriers of cost, language, culture, or geography. It should also cover all people and provide individuals with continuity of care in an effective, safe, and well-coordinated network of services that are centered on the patient's needs. If you look at workforce, the ability of a country to meet its health goals depends largely on the knowledge, skills, motivation, and deployment of the people responsible for organizing and delivering health services. Many countries, however, lack their human resources needed to deliver essential health interventions for a number of reasons, including limited production capacity, migration of health workers within and across countries, poor mix of skills, and demographic imbalances. We'll look specifically at this later in the course. Moving onto health information. Sound and reliable information is the foundation of decision-making across all health system building blocks. It's essential for health system policy development and implementation, governance and regulation, health research, human resources development, health education and training, service delivery and financing. The health information system provides the underpinnings for decision-making and has four key functions; data generation, compilation, analysis and synthesis, and communication. In a well-functioning health system, the health information system collects data from health and other relevant resources, analyzes the data and ensures their overall quality, relevance, and timeliness and converts the data into information for health-related decision-making. Health financing is fundamental to the ability of health systems to maintain and improve human welfare. It refers to the function of a health system concerned with the mobilization, accumulation, and allocation of money to cover the health needs of the entire population. The purpose of health financing is to make funding available, as well as to set the right financial incentives to providers, to ensure that all individuals have access to effective public health and personal health care. A well functioning health system insurance equitable access to essential medical products, vaccines, and technologies of a short quality, safety, efficacy, and cost-effectiveness. This requires national policies, standards, guidelines, and regulations that support policy and includes evidence-based selection of medicines, vaccines, and technologies according to international standards. This also means that information on prices and international trade agreements should be available and that reliable manufacturing practices, procurement, supply, storage, and distribution systems is available and support for rational use of essential medicines, commodities, and equipment is in place. Last but definitely not least is governance. Governance in health is a cross-cutting theme, intimately connected with accountability. In the context of health systems, it is an integral part of the other five health system components you just learned about. Leadership and governance in a health system involves ensuring that strategic policy frameworks exist and are combined with effective oversight, coalition-building, regulation, and accountability. To summarize, health systems as a whole aim be responsive to population needs, provide protection against risk associated with ill-health, and improve the health of the population. The six building blocks contribute to the strengthening of the health system in different ways. Some cross-cutting components, such as health information and leadership and governance provide the basis for the overall policy and regulation of all the other health system blocks. Medical products, vaccines and technologies, and service delivery reflect the immediate outputs of the health system, such as the availability and distribution of care. Of course, you cannot have a well-functioning health system without key components, such as financing and health workforce.