"Strengthening health systems resilience" with Professor Steve Thomas

When and Where

Monday, March 22, 2021 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm


Professor Steve Thomas, Edward Kennedy Professor of Health Polic, Public Health & Primary Care Director Centre for Health Policy & Mgmt, School Office - Medicine, Trinity College Dublin


Health system resilience is key to coping with catastrophic events, such as the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, but challenges existing in defining resilience and specifically what it means to strengthen it and assess it. Dr. Thomas led a WHO policy brief from the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies outlining the key concepts and strategies for health system resilience, and he will cover the key findings from this important document, including defining resilience and its distinct stages and outlining the shock strategies that countries and health systems around the world should consider. This presentation will offer a thought-provoking and needed look at what we can learn from system shocks and what steps decision-makers should take to meaningfully build resilience in health systems.

Speaker Bio

Dr. Thomas is the Director of the Centre for Health Policy and Management, the Edward Kennedy Chair of Health Policy and Management and a co-Director of the HRB-funded national SPHERE Programme in Population Health and Health Services Research. He is also the Director of Health Policy and Engagement for the School of Medicine. He has a wealth of international experience in policy-oriented research and post-graduate teaching and education in government and academia over the last 25 years. His research interests include health systems evaluation, health financing, health economics and health policy analysis, and workforce planning and motivation. His track record in policy influence is outstanding. He led the Trinity team in support of the Oireachtas Committee for the Future of Healthcare and its production of Slaintecare. He coordinates Health Economics and the Health Policy and Systems teaching on various post-graduate programmes. He is responsible for the design and evaluation of the SPHERE PhD programme which has successfully trained over 40 PhD candidates. He collaborates widely with national and international stakeholders in research, policy and education.

Watch the recording of the webinar below

This is a School of Cities Seminar Series "Building Resilience in Food and Health Supply Chains"

Supply chains are the primary societal infrastructure for the production, delivery, and recycling of goods and services. Though sometimes invisible, supply chains are the systems that ensure that flour is available in your grocery store, that hospitals have sufficient personal protective equipment, and that there are enough trained staff to administer medical tests, deliver babies, and check-out your groceries. While much of the effort in supply chains over the past 50 years has been to make them agile, fast, and cheap, there is a growing realization that supply chains must be able to adapt to disruptions from local events such as the inability for a plane to land due to weather to global changes such as the closing of the US-Canada border due to COVID-19.

This seminar series seeks to develop a multi-disciplinary understanding of resilient supply chains by examining two which are of critical importance to everyday life: food and health supply chains. The talks in this series look at these supply chains, both independently and together, through the inclusion of diverse speakers representing at least the following perspectives:

  • Supply Chain Optimization 
  • Northern and Remote Food and Health Security
  • Urban Food Systems
  • Systems of Food Production
  • Healthcare Systems