Health and Social care services

Quality health care is important to families, societies and the economy – because healthy workers are more productive. The PSI – which represents 8 million health care workers – believes that care must be available to people who need it, not just to those who can pay. Health care is dangerous work. These workers, and the services they provide, are worthy of everyone’s support. Read more

First International Symposium on Community Health Workers starts in Uganda

21 February 2017

The first International Symposium on Community Health Workers (CHWs) commenced on 21 February at Hotel Africana in Kampala, Uganda. The 3-day symposium with the theme: Contribution of CHWs towards the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals brings together over 450 policy makers, academics, practitioners, and civil society organisations in the health sector, including PSI.

In New York, PSI affiliate 1199SEIU delivers letter to the Ambassador of Liberia to the US

20 February 2017

On February 17, joining the worldwide protests for the reinstatement of health workers Joseph S. Tamba and George Poe Williams, President and General Secretary of NAHWAL, respectively, Maria Castaneda on behalf of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East delivered a letter to the Ambassador Jeremiah C. Suluneth.

Trade union rights in Liberia: PSI meets the Ambassador to the UN in Geneva

17 February 2017

On February 17, PSI Deputy General Secretary, David Boys, Health Officer, Baba Aye, and Trade Union Rights Officer, Camilo Rubiano, met with the Ambassador of Liberia to the UN organizations in Geneva, Mr. Paul Wolokollie Tate, to discuss the situation of Joseph S. Tamba and George Poe Williams, President and General Secretary of NAHWAL, respectively.

PPPs and the Right to Health: PSI French-speaking Africa Affiliates Call for People over Profit

16 February 2017

The PSI Human Right to Health campaign was launched in Francophone Africa in the first week of February. This was with a 2-day seminar on PPPs and the Right to Health, organised on the eve of the French-Speaking Africa Sub-Regional Advisory Committee meeting at Lome, Togo.

In Pakistan, Community Health Workers Get Their Issues Across

15 February 2017
Picture caption: Shama Gulani, General Secretary of ASLHWA addresses the public meeting in Karachi

On 30 January, the All Sindh Lady Health Workers and Employees Association, PSI and Workers Education and Research Organisation organised a public meeting in Karachi on "Socio Economic Impacts of Delayed Wages on LHWs and their families" and "Sexual Harassment of Lady Health Workers on the Job and Field" to share the findings of two studies to be published very soon.

Support Fair and Ethical Recruitment: #NoRecruitmentFees

14 February 2017
Join the PSI campaign to abolish the practice of charging recruitment fees on migrant workers. Sign on to the Manifesto and use it to shift policy and practice towards fair and ethical recruitment. #NoRecruitmentFees

Time to end attacks on Lady Health Workers in Pakistan

02 February 2017

PSI launched the reports of two research studies: Sexual harassment faced by Lady Health Workers at work and field, and Socio-economic impacts of delayed wages on Lady Health Workers in Pakistan on January 30.

Support Fair and Ethical Recruitment: #NoRecruitmentFees

14 February 2017
Join the PSI campaign to abolish the practice of charging recruitment fees on migrant workers. Sign on to the Manifesto and use it to shift policy and practice towards fair and ethical recruitment. #NoRecruitmentFees

A better future with public health for all

12 December 2016
health4all

During its Health and Social Care Services Task Force meeting held in Geneva on 12-13 December, PSI launched its Global Campaign for the Human Right to Health that aims at building a mass global movement that could influence concrete policies towards attaining Universal Public Health Coverage (UPHC). Here's the Manifesto of the campaign.

Respect the right to organise - Reinstate Liberian trade union leaders NOW!

06 October 2016

The Liberian regime has no respect for basic Human Rights; or Workers Rights!



In Liberia, the government has arbitrarily fired health workers who were on the front lines of the fight against Ebola; simply because they were trying to ensure adequate protection and working conditions for public workers. Before you consider traveling to or investing in Liberia, think about whether you really want to support a regime which treats health heroes as disposable goods.



Learn more about how to stand up for the rights of Liberian workers by watching the video above and signing the petition below!

Open letter: Nurses, Midwives and Healthcare workers speak out against aspects of the TPP

24 June 2015
Photo: Nurses - Creative Commons - Australian DFAT

In an open letter to trade ministers, prime ministers and presidents of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries, nurses, midwives and healthcare workers speak out for the sake of their communities’ health against aspects of the TPP.

Turkey: PSI General Secretary meets dismissed health care workers, denounces attack on labour rights

13 January 2015

In December 2014, the hospital of Maltepe University in Istanbul dismissed nearly 100 workers for being members of the Progressive Union of Health Workers. PSI/EPSU ask all affiliates to join the LabourStart campaign calling for the reinstatement of these workers.

Solidarity call for aid against impacts of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)

23 October 2014
The fight against Ebola in Guinea - Healthworkers in protective equipment

#protecthealthworkers - PSI is calling on all affiliates to donate to the PSI Aid Fund. The funds will be used for the immediate relief and assistance of our members and their families, especially in cases where health workers have died and their families have no access to social protection.

28 April International Workers' Memorial Day

25 April 2014

No more excuses!


It is the duty of governments and enterprises to protect the health and safety of workers

Urge the Turkish President to let doctors treat their patients

14 January 2014
Physicians for Human Rights logo

The Turkish president is considering signing a health bill that will criminalize emergency medical care and punish doctors with heavy fines and imprisonment for simply doing their jobs.


Physicians for Human Rights is calling on citizens around the world to write to the Turkish President in order to stop the health bill from becoming law.

Voices of the living and the dead cry out for justice in Guatemala

28 March 2013

Two women trade unionists, Santa Alvarado, member of PSI affiliate SNTSG, and Kira Zulueta Enriquez Mena, have been brutally murdered in two separate incidents in Guatemala. These follow on the murder of Carlos Hernández Mendoza, SNTSG union leader shot dead at 8:30 am on 8 March 2013 by two men on a motorcycle. Some five other members of SNTSG were also murdered in the last year as were several civil society activists, including agrarian reform and indigenous right activists.

Ecuador: 3,000 public employees unfairly dismissed

05 December 2011

Several thousand public servants, mainly in the health and public administration sectors were recently arbitrarily dismissed leaving Ecuador’s health and central administration services in disarray. Many of those dismissed are members of PSI’s affiliates.

Health Ministerial Meeting: Joint trade union statement

13 January 2017

The Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (TUAC) and the Public Services International (PSI) have prepared a joint statement prior to the OECD Health Ministerial Meeting taking place in Paris on 17 January where Ministers from over 35 OECD and partner countries will exchange their ideas, ambitions and challenges for The Next Generation of Health Reforms.

PSI briefing: The Future of Health

13 January 2017

PSI has commissioned a new briefing entitled “The Future of Health: Person Centred Care in Policy and Practice”, by Kate Baylis, SOAS, University of London.

Banners: A better future with public health for all

12 December 2016

The banners "A better future with public health for all" - size 700x430 and size 800x800 - are available for download in English, French and Spanish (jpg format).

Badges: My health is not for sale

12 December 2016

The badges "MY HEALTH IS NOT FOR SALE #PublicHealth4All" are available for download in English and Spanish (jpg format).

Posters: A better future with public health for all

12 December 2016

The posters "A better future with public health for all" are available for download in English, French and Spanish.

Case study: Workplace Violence - Argentina

24 November 2016
At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector and that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard on violence against women and men at work. This case study was prepared in August 2016 as part of PSI’s contribution to the ILO tripartite experts meeting held during the period October 3-6 in Geneva.

Case study: Workplace Violence - Philippines

24 November 2016
At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector. The WOC also agreed that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard (convention and recommendations) on violence against women and men at work. This case study was prepared in August 2016 as part of PSI’s contribution to the ILO tripartite experts meeting held during the period October 3-6 in Geneva.

Case study: Workplace Violence - Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

23 November 2016
At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector. The WOC also agreed that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard (convention and recommendations) on violence against women and men at work. This case study was prepared in August 2016 as part of PSI’s contribution to the ILO tripartite experts meeting held during the period October 3-6 in Geneva.

Tackling Violence in the Health Sector

23 November 2016
Trade union preparedness and actions to tackle violence against women and men in the world of work

Posters: Int'l Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

17 November 2016

Trade unions are struggling to end violence at the workplace and in society. In all countries, we need a strong commitment from governments to address the deeply rooted causes of violence against women: inequality and discrimination. Download PSI's posters for International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Policy brief EB-148 : PSI Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Intervention Strategy

06 October 2016

This policy brief on the PSI Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Intervention Strategy was produced for the PSI Executive Board EB-148 held at the ILO in Geneva (Switzerland) on 19-20 May 2016. Its objective is to inform EB-148 of related work and activities. The brief is available in English, French, Spanish, German, Swedish and Japanese.

Policy brief EB-148 : Health and Social Services

04 October 2016

This policy brief on Health and Social Services was produced for the PSI Executive Board EB-148 held at the ILO in Geneva (Switzerland) on 19-20 May 2016. Its objective is to inform EB-148 of activities in the Health and Social Services sector since the PSI Steering Committee SC-19 that took place in Geneva (Switzerland) in November 2015 and inform EB-148 of activities planned for 2016. The brief is available in English, French, Spanish, German, Swedish and Japanese.

Final report of the expert group to the High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth

21 September 2016

The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, established the High-Level Commission on
Health Employment and Economic Growth (ComHEEG) in March 2016. Its task is to propose intersectoral
actions to guide and stimulate the creation of health and social sector jobs to advance inclusive
economic growth.
In support of the Commission’s work, an Expert Group was convened to critically review the
available evidence.

Safe Workers Save Lives: PSI Health Priorities and Trade Union Response to the Ebola Virus Disease

21 September 2016
Photo: UNMEER/Martine Perret. Creative Commons

At the start of the Ebola crisis, PSI was contacted by its affiliates from the three most affected countries with the alarming news that health workers were dying on the workfloor. This update reports on the work that has taken place on the ground since the implementation of PSI's Ebola response strategy.

PSI General Secretary statement at the 2nd ComHEEG meeting

20 September 2016

This second meeting of the UN High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth (ComHEEG) aims at finalising and formally endorsing the recommendations and the report of the Commission, as well as discussing the way forward towards implementation of these recommendations.

ILO Tripartite Meeting on Improving Employment and Working Conditions in Health Services (Geneva)

06 February 2017

The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss decent work strategies that effectively address health workforce shortages, as a prerequisite to enable provision of equal access to health care for all in need, with a view to adopting conclusions on future programme development and to inform policy-making on the selected topic at the international, regional and national levels.

More information on ILO website.

ITUC/Global Unions and World Bank/IMF High level meetings

31 January 2017

PSI is part of the trade union delegation attending the two and a half days meetings with the IMF and World Bank and will be represented as a discussant in the session on "Joint work towards universal social protection and healthcare"'.

140th WHO Executive Board

23 January 2017

The Executive Board is composed of 34 technically qualified members elected for three-year terms. This year the annual Board meeting is held from 23 January – 1 February. The members will agree upon the agenda for the World Health Assembly and the resolutions to be considered by the Health Assembly.

High-Level Policy Forum & OECD Health Ministerial (Paris)

13 January 2017

Public Services International (PSI) and The Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (TUAC) will be participating and contributing to the High-Level Policy Forum on 16 January and OECD Health Ministerial on 17 January 2017.

PSI Health Task Force (Geneva)

10 November 2016
Photo: Direct Relief - Creative Commons

PSI is holding this meeting with major affiliates in the health and social services sector to review and renew the PSI health and social services strategy, and to collect views and develop a consensus on the actions that affiliates and PSI should pursue with regard to the major issues that we have provisionally identified for the sector.

The Role of Public Service Trade Unions in achieving Decent Work for Persons with Disabilities

07 November 2016

Achieving Decent Work for All, and realising the Sustainable Development Goals, requires focussed work to include persons with disabilities. This PSI meeting, with the support of ILO Bureau for Workers’ Activities (ACTRAV) and the Gender, Equality and Diversity branch (GED), is an opportunity to develop knowledge, awareness and advocacy relevant for a range of actors in their governance, actions and aims.

First meeting of the Guideline Development Group for the WHO

10 October 2016
Community health worker - Direct Relief - Creative Commons

PSI General Secretary, Rosa Pavanelli has been invited to participate as an expert in the Guideline Development Group (GDG) for the World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines on health policy and systems support for community health worker programmes. The GDG will meet in Geneva for the first time on October 10-11 2016.

Public meeting on neoliberalism and healthcare in South Asia

22 September 2016

The healthcare sector in South Asian countries has seen significant restructuring with an increase in private sector participation in provisioning. The discussion will explore the linkages between neoliberal reforms and informalisation of employment; explore the trends in employment patterns in Nepal, India and Sri Lanka; as well as look into some of the trade union responses to this growing phenomenon.

PSI/EPSU-ILO Roundtable on Labour Migration and Trade Union Rights

23 November 2015

The PSI/EPSU-ILO Roundtable on Labour Migration and Trade Union Rights is taking place in Yerevan, Armenia on 24-25 November. This meeting will be held in English, Russian and Armenian with the participation of PSI/EPSU affiliates, ILO Moscow ACTRAV and invited guests, experts and PSI staff.

PSI Asia-Pacific Regional Forum on Health and Social Services

27 January 2015

PSI Asia Pacific Region is planning a discussion forum on health and social services in Manila, Philippines from 7-10 September 2015.

International Summit Nursing and Ebola Virus

24 October 2014
International Summit Nursing and Ebola Virus

PSI will take part in the International Summit on Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), organised by the International Council of Nurses (ICN) that represents 13 million nurses worldwide.

PSI at the G20 and related events

09 October 2014

The G20 leaders meeting is taking place on 15-16 November 2014 in Brisbane, Australia. Public
Services International (PSI) has been following G20 progress this year, especially in relation to the
work the OECD is doing on behalf of the G20 to ensure that multinational corporations pay their
fair share of tax, called the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project.

10th FIQ Congress

11 April 2014
Mark Langevin at FIQ Congress

The FIQ (Fédération Interprofessionelle de la santé du Québec) held its 10th Congress from 7 to 10th April 2014 in Quebec city. 700 delegates from all over Quebec participated.

Video: Workshop on violence in the workplace

23 November 2016

At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector. The WOC also agreed that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard (convention and recommendations) on violence against women and men at work. This video of interviews is part of the case study on the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Video interviews: SOLSICO activists in healthcare

23 November 2016

At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector. The WOC also agreed that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard (convention and recommendations) on violence against women and men at work. This video of interviews is part of the case study on the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Audio: RadioLabour interview with NAHWAL leaders

18 October 2016

In 2014, at the height of the Ebola crisis, the Liberian government fired 22 union leaders. It still has not reinstated two of the fired leaders: Joseph Tamba, the president of the National Health Workers' Association of Liberia and George Poe Williams, the General Secretary . A RadioLabour interview with Mr Williams.

Audio: WINS Radio reports on dismissed Liberian health workers

11 April 2016

WINS Radio reports on PSI's call to action for the reinstatement of two Liberian health union leaders dismissed in February 2014 with 22 other workers following a nationwide strike in protest of working conditions and the lack of protective equipment and medication.

Video: The IMF, health systems and the Ebola crisis

09 June 2015

Alexander E. Kentikelenis, University of Cambridge (UK), speaks at the PSI Executive Board meeting (EB-147) that took place in Geneva, Switzerland on 27-28 May 2015.

Video: Why Public-Private Partnerships don’t work

16 March 2015

In this video, PSI Deputy General Secretary David Boys introduces the new publication “Why Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) don’t work” by Public Services International Research Unit (PSIRU).

Video: PSI names the 325 health workers killed by Ebola

25 November 2014

"Over 300 workers have died on the job in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, trying to save lives and contain the Ebola outbreak. They were doctors, nurses, midwives, cleaners, ambulance drivers, pharmacists, community health workers – among others.
PSI wants to remember all of those workers one by one, name by name. We will honour their sacrifice by pledging to ensure that all workers enjoy safe working conditions everywhere and to strengthen the fight for quality public healthcare for all."

Video: The fightback against austerity

07 July 2014

Public Services International (PSI), the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU), together with our affiliate unions, ADEDY, and allies in Greece brought together a team of expert union journalists and communicators. This solidarity exchange enabled PSI communicators from other countries to learn more about the issues facing Greek trade unionists and share this understanding with their union members and communities around the world.

Video: Nigerian public services union demands right to health in new constitution

03 June 2014

Watch this interview with Ayuba Wabba, President of the PSI-affiliated Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN). Brother Wabba has been selected to join a constitutional review committee considering health-related rights for the drafting of Nigeria's new constitution.

Video: Liberian Government denies compensation to health workers who die from Ebola while saving lives

03 June 2014

Watch an interview with Paul Tilame of the PSI-affiliated National Private Sector Health Workers Union of Liberia (NPSHWU) talking about the protests at the health ministers summit in Monrovia in April and the deaths of the health workers from Ebola.

Video: Greek health clinic treats victims of austerity

13 December 2013

The Elliniko community health clinic has become a symbol of solidarity for people in Greece who are being denied access to universal healthcare. The free municipal clinic has served more than 15,000 patients since it opened in 2011. Though a valiant initiative, run through donations and volunteers, is it a sustainable long-term solution to the pains caused by austerity and privatised health services?

Photos: World Social Forum, Tunis 2013

15 April 2013

Public Services International had the strongest global union presence at the World Social Forum 26-30 March 2013 in Tunis, Tunisia. PSI hosted and co-sponsored numerous events on trade union rights, youth, water, women’s issues, tax justice, energy and climate change.

Preventing Hepatitis

22 November 2011

“Preventing Hepatitis” addresses the specific need to vaccinate healthcare workers against Hepatitis A & B in less than 2 minutes.

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The Essential Sharp Sense

22 November 2011

This is a 4 minute summary of the 17 minute video SHARP SENSE produced by the global union federation Public Services International.

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Sharp Sense: Promoting the safety of health care workers

17 November 2011

Healthcare workers face the risk every day of exposure to bloodborne pathogens because of needlestick injuries. In this short video, a nurse, an HIV/AIDS counsellor and an HIV/AIDS physician share their personal experiences with needlestick injuries.

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