past event
International Development

Harnessing Innovations on the Path to Universal Health Coverage”

The PNB Secretariat in partnership with Heartfile and the International Partnership for Innovation in Healthcare Delivery Forum presents a roundtable discussion on “Harnessing Innovations on the Path to Universal Health Coverage.”


Dr. Anis Kazi, Senior Manager, Heartfile – Pakistan
Dr. Seema Raza, Manager – Health, Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund
Mr. Richard Bartlett, Associate Director, International Partnership for Innovative Healthcare Delivery  
Dr. Jonathan Quick, President and CEO, Management Sciences for Health

With video-recorded remarks from:

Dr. Timothy Evans, Dean, James P. Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University – Bangladesh

At 3:00pm
April 8, 2013

Gaylord Convention Center, Room 14
201 Waterfront St, National Harbor, MD 20745

Session Objectives:

Knowledge exchange: how can innovation in financing drive universal healthcare efforts? What are the challenges and best practices? How can models be scaled and replicated successfully?

Engagement: this roundtable will kick off an exchange that will continue via online platform following the session, and the ideas and questions framed in this meeting will serve as the first foundations of practitioner and stakeholder engagement.

Universal health coverage (UHC) is gaining traction as an umbrella goal of international health development, championed by the Millennium Development Goals campaign and the United Nations, but despite broad-based support for the principals underlying UHC, the road to implementation as a social policy faces numerous challenges.

Case studies around the world are showing that innovative, entrepreneurial approaches utilizing various technologies are building impactful approaches that go beyond traditional tax- and insurance-based healthcare. The health equity fund approach is currently being used in Cambodia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Laos with promising initial results.

Pakistan’s health equity fund model, Heartfile Health Financing, is key to developing country-wide mixed-health systems for providing social protection coverage to the poor. The model integrates creative use of mHealth technology to overcome weaknesses of traditional social protection systems and helps ingrain accountability and transparency in addition to making the system more responsive and effective. This is a critical case study as millions across the world are pushed into poverty every year as a result of healthcare costs.

This discussion highlighted Heartfile Health Financing’s successes – scalability in Pakistan, addressing clear needs, patient-centric approach, transparent technology platform – and catalyzed a dialogue about best practices and pitfalls to avoid in driving UHC projects in low-income countries. Practitioners conferred on most impact approaches to fundraising, project sustainability, government cooperation, and the role of technology. See the full readout of notes and recommendations on IPIHD’s blog here.

Please contact Sarah Harlan via email for more information.


In response to the rampant corruption and inefficiency within Pakistani public healthcare, Heartfile developed a financing platform that allows local health workers to assist impoverished citizens with healthcare costs: Heartfile Health Financing. Heartfile Health Financing is an innovative mHealth-enabled health financing program, aimed at protecting the poor from catastrophic expenditures on healthcare, and the efforts of the program and its founder Dr. Sania Nishtar have been lauded by the Rockefeller Foundation, the Clinton Global Initiative, the World Bank, and the World Health Organization among others.

The International Partnership for Innovative Healthcare Delivery (IPIHD) proactively supports a network of innovators and entrepreneurs to scale and replicate successful healthcare delivery solutions around the world. The 2013 IPIHD Forum, April 7 and 8 in Washington, DC, will include highlighting IPIHD Network innovators and interactive breakout sessions on best practices in building partnerships and opportunities for networking to foster collaborations.

The Aspen Institute serves as the Secretariat for Partners for a New Beginning (PNB). PNB is a network operating in ten countries around the world where local projects and priorities are identified by local chapters. The Secretariat strategically matches these projects with US and international partners. PNB is supported by a global coalition of prominent business and civil society leaders committed to building effective partnerships in the areas of economic opportunity, science & technology, education, and exchange. PNB currently has active chapters in Pakistan, Indonesia, Turkey, Egypt, the Palestinian Territories, Jordan, and across the Maghreb through PNB’s North African Partnership for Economic Opportunity (PNB-NAPEO).

The PNB Secretariat in partnership with Heartfile and the International Partnership for Innovation in Healthcare Delivery Forum presents a roundtable discussion on “Harnessing Innovations on the Path to Universal Health Coverage.”

Event information
Mon Apr 8, 2013
3:00pm - 5:00pm GMT+0000
Gaylord Convention Center
201 Waterfront St
National Harbor, MD, United States