The following sources provide more information on engaging the private sector for health, contracting, and other forms of public-private partnerships for health. Each resource is color-coded according to the lifecycle stage to which it corresponds.

stage one iconStage one

stage two iconStage two

stage three iconStage three

stage four iconStage four

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Stage five

Not stage specificNot stage specific


stages one through four

Addressing the Need: Lessons for Service Delivery Organizations on Delivering Contracted-Out Family Planning and RH Services. 2012. Bethesda, MD: SHOPS Project, Abt Associates.
This primer aims to provide clear lessons and recommendations to help service delivery organizations and program managers establish, implement, and strengthen contracting arrangements. The primer draws on Marie Stopes International’s experience of delivering government-contracted services in Bangladesh, India, and South Africa.

stage two
Alternative Provider Payment Methods: Incentives for Improving Health Care Delivery.  1999. Bethesda, MD: PHR, Abt Associates. 
This primer describes the alternative payment methods developed over the course of the last 25 years—their advantages and disadvantages, the incentives they create for providers, payors, and consumers, how they operate—and offers policy guidance gathered from experiences in diverse countries and health systems. 

stage one icon 
Building Results? Contracting for Health Service Delivery in Developing Countries.  2005. Loevinsohn, B. and A. Harding. 
This paper investigates examples indicating that contracting for the delivery of primary care can be very effective and that improvements can be rapid. The paper emphasizes that contracting for health service delivery should be expanded and future efforts must include rigorous evaluations.

Not stage specific 
Consultation on Strategic Contracting in Health Systems: Synthesis of the Meeting. 2008. Elovainio, R. and J. Perrot. Geneva: World Health Organisation.
This document is a meeting synthesis based on the work done during the “Strategic Contracting” consultation. It is not a summary compendium of all the meetings’ presentations and discussions but more a guide based on the information gathered during the meeting.

stages one through four 
Contracting for Health Care Service Delivery:  A Manual for Policy Makers. 2004. Abramson, W.  Commercial Market Strategy Project funded by USAID and implemented by John Snow, Inc. 
This guide offers a brief overview of the benefits—and limits—of using contracts for service delivery and describes some of the steps that are key to good contract management.

stages one through four 
Contracting for Primary Health Services: Evidence on Its Effects and a Framework for Evaluation. 2004. Liu, X., D.R. Hotchkiss, S. Bose, R. Bitran, and U. Giedion. Bethesda, MD: PHR plus ; Abt Associates.
This is a conceptual framework and a set of indicators for monitoring and evaluating contracting-out interventions at both the program and system levels. The framework focuses on four types of factors: the attributes of the contracting-out intervention, the external environment, responses of providers and purchasers both within and outside the intervention, and health system performance.

stages one through four
Contracting for Reproductive Health Care: A Guide. 2000. Rosen, J. 
This guide is intended primarily for use by World Bank operations staff, especially task teams for World Bank-funded projects that include a reproductive health component. It also can be used by government officials or others interested in pursuing contracting as an option for provision of reproductive health care.

stage one icon 
Contracting Out Government Functions and Services in Post-Conflict and Fragile Situations. 2005. Partnership for Democratic Governance; Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development. 
This handbook is a culmination of a three-year consultative process and is an operational resource for field practitioners and government policy makers. This guide is an aid in making better-informed decisions about the nature of contracting out and helps to assess the options available when deciding whether to externalize certain services.

stages one through four 
Contracting-out Reproductive Health and Family Planning Services: Contracting Management and Operations. 2006. Liu, X. Bethesda, MD: PSP-One, Abt Associates. 
This primer introduces key aspects of contracting and summarizes lessons from countries’ experiences in contracting-out. In doing so, it is intended to serve the practical needs of contracting practitioners in developing countries that are considering contracting as a way to deliver family planning and reproductive health services. Intended users include country-level decisionmakers, contract operation managers, and mission officers and advisers from donor agencies.

stages one and two 
Costing of Health Services for Provider Payment: A Practical Manual Based on Country Costing Challenges, Trade-Offs, and Solutions.  2014. Joint Learning Network for Universal Health Coverage.  
This manual is intended to equip policymakers, policy analysts, and costing practitioners in low and middle income countries with technical guidance and practical examples for planning and implementing a costing exercise for provider payment. It provides step-by-step instructions for designing a costing exercise, developing data collection tools, collecting and analyzing cost data, and using the results to shape provider payment policy and set payment rates.

stage one icon 
Designing Public-Private Partnerships in Health. 2011. Bethesda, MD: SHOPS Project, Abt Associates.  
This primer proposes a new definition for public-private partnerships in health that opens up a flexible range of partnering opportunities while emphasizing the importance of formal agreements and honest brokers in the process.

stage five icon 
Dispute Resolution Systems Available. Last modified 2014. World Bank Group. 
A resource for those seeking information on legal redress and dispute resolution systems.

stages one and two 
Experience of Contracting with the Private Sector: a Selective Review. 2004. Department for International Development Health Resource Centre.
This paper reviews experiences of social agencies contracting with the private sector to provide health care services and focuses on the capacity of this mechanism to improve access to services by the poor.

Not stage specific 
Extending the Reach: Contracting Out HIV Services to the Private Health Sector in Gauteng, South Africa. 2014. Tayag, Josef, James White, and Alejandra Mijares. Bethesda, MD: SHOPS Project, Abt Associates Inc. 
This study focuses on the experience of Right to Care Health Services, a South African private company managing HIV services on behalf of several clients, including PEPFAR, the South African government, employers, and medical aid schemes.

stages one through four 
Filling the Gap: Lessons for Policymakers and Donors on Contracting Out Family Planning and RH Services. 2012. Corby, N., M. Nunn, and K. Welch.  Bethesda, MD: SHOPS Project, Abt Associates. 
This primer is an update of Contracting-out Reproductive Health and Family Planning Services: Contracting Management and Operations. Focusing on the demand-side (governments and donors) of contracting out with the private sector, the primer describes the concept of contracting out, discusses its rationale and process, and summarizes three cases of contracting out programs.

stage two icon 
Financial and Other Rewards for Good Performance or Results: A guided tour of concepts and terms and a glossary or RBF. 2011. The World Bank. 
This essay and glossary describe how different terms are used and points out significant distinctions among types of RBF programs and includes information on getting away from paying for inputs, paying for (some definition of) results, defining incentives and whom they affect, incentives for program beneficiaries, concepts and their relations, and a simple glossary of terms.

stage one icon 
Healthy Partnerships: How Governments Can Engage the Private Sector to Improve Health in Africa. IFC. 
This report assesses and compares the ways in which African governments are engaging with their private health sectors. Engagement is defined, for the purposes of this report, to mean the deliberate, systematic collaboration of the government and the private health sector according to national health priorities, beyond individual interventions and programs.

stage one icon
Health Systems in Transition Template. 2006. Allin, S., R. Busse,  A. Dixon, J. Figeuras, D. McDaid, E. Mossialos, E. Nolte, A. Rico, A. Riesberg, and S. Thomson.  World Health Organization, the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies.
The Health Systems in Transition profiles are country-based reports that provide a detailed description of health system and policy initiatives in progress or under development.

stage one icon
The International Finance Corporation’s Health Partnerships Report
This report assess and compares the ways in which African governments are engaging with their private health sectors.

stage five icon 
Jams Clause Workbook. 2011. Jams.
JAMS offers sample dispute resolution clauses that may be inserted into a contract prior to any dispute ever arising. These sample dispute resolution clauses are set forth and, in some cases, briefly discussed inside.

stage two icon 
Methods for Estimating the Costs of Family Planning: Report of the Expert Group Meeting on Family Planning Costing. 2011. MEASURE Evaluation PRH.
This report reflects a summary of the discussion that took place during the Expert Group meeting as well as some other issues raised by background papers.

stage one icon 
Performance-Based Contracting for Health Services in Developing Countries. 2008. Loevinsohn, B. The World Bank.
This book provides proactive advice to anyone involved in, or who is interested in becoming involved in, performance-based contracting of health services with non-state providers in the context of developing countries.

stage one icon
Private Participation in Health Services. 2003. Harding, A., and A.S. Preker. Washington, DC: World Bank.
This book draws on a wide range of country experience to provide a judicious blend of practical advice and useful information on health services privatization issues. It discusses how to assess the potential for private sector involvement, how to engage in contracting with the private sector for health services, and how to regulate the sector. 

stage two icon
Provider Payment Mechanisms in Health Care: Incentives, Outcomes, and Organizational Impact in Developing Countries. 1998. PHR. 
This paper assists with development of a research design for a study exploring the impact of alternative methods of provider payment mechanisms in developing countries. The paper sees provider payment as a form of contract between purchaser and provider and draws upon the economic literature on agency contracts to consider the problem of how best to develop appropriate payment mechanisms.

Not stage specific 
The Strengthening Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Project website
The SHOPS Plus website houses resources ranging from PowerPoint presentations to published reports. This website is helpful if you are looking for country- or health area- specific content.

stage five icon 
What You Need to Know About Dispute Resolution: The Guide to Dispute Resolution Processes. 2006. American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution. 
A guide to dispute resolution processes.



Sustaining Health Outcomes through the Private Sector (SHOPS) Plus is a five-year cooperative agreement (AID-OAA-A-15-00067) funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This website is made possible by the generous support of the American people through USAID. The information provided on this website is not official U.S. government information and does not represent the views or positions of USAID or the U.S. government.

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