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Asia and the Pacific Regional Network

The Asia and the Pacific Regional Network is for Health Systems Global (HSG) members located and working in the South-East Asia and Western Pacific Regions. It aims to be a space for sharing and networking regionally in the field of health systems policy, practice and research.

The network looks forward to active participation from practitioners, academics, researchers and policy makers in this huge, diverse and beautiful region.

News and views

News and views

Access the latest blog posts and news items from and about Asia and the Pacific region.

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Related resources

Interested in reading more about health policy and systems research in Asia and the Pacific? Check out our recommended readings below.

A presentation on 'Knowledge for Universal Health Coverage' was made by Dr Abdul Ghaffar (Executive Director, Alliance) at a regional meeting on Applied Research on Health Policy and Systems to Support Universal Health Coverage (UHC), held 26-27 November 2015 by the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific in Manila, Philippines.

Drawing on published work from the Asia Pacific Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, this paper presents a framework for undertaking comparative studies on the health systems of countries.

The Lancet Regional Health – Western Pacific is an open access journal, part of The Lancet group’s global initiative to advocate for health-care quality and access in all regions of the world. The journal fosters the advance of clinical practice and health policy in the Western Pacific region, with the ultimate goal of improving health outcomes. The journal aspires to increase the quality of regional and national health research.

Although health systems strengthening through HPSR is increasingly emphasized by WHO and country health ministries, actual HPSR progress may still be lacking. There is a need and an opportunity for WHO and other global health agencies to focus on providing the necessary tools and building HPSR capacity in low- and middle-income countries.

Regional Network Coordinators

Kaaren Mathias

Kaaren Mathias

Regional Network Co-Lead, South-East Asia Region

Katherine Ann Villegas Reyes

Katherine Ann Villegas Reyes

Regional Network Co-Lead, Western Pacific Region

Alfred Ballesteros

Alfred Ballesteros

Regional Network Google Group Moderator

Kaaren Mathias

Kaaren Mathias

Regional Network Co-Lead, South-East Asia Region

Kaaren Mathias is a public health physician with over fourteen years of experience working in programme management and research in low- and middle-income countries. In 2016, Kaaren completed a PhD through Umea University (Sweden) and worked as a researcher and community health programme leader with the Emmanuel Hospital Association in North India. Kaaren developed strong skills in governance as a Board Director for community health NGOs as well as for the oldest residential school in Asia, Woodstock. She is passionate about improving community health and strengthening health systems in an international context. In the past five years Kaaren has focused on mental health leadership, advocacy and research in North India with multiples projects in health system strengthening in Uttarakhand, India.

Katherine Ann Villegas Reyes

Katherine Ann Villegas Reyes

Regional Network Co-Lead, Western Pacific Region

Dr. Katherine Ann Reyes is a Professor of health policy and administration at the University of Philippines Manila. She is a trained physician, health policy analyst, researcher, and educator. She is actively contributing to the development and implementation of health reforms primarily in the Philippines, with beginning contribution to Southeast Asian countries. She focuses her policy analysis and research work to enable decision makers and managers, make better decisions toward stronger public health systems with responsive health service delivery, health financing, institutional governance and regulation. Since 2012, she has led or co-led projects on health system strengthening commissioned by range of institutions such as DOH, PhilHealth, UNICEF, WHO, UNDP, DSWD, EU, USAID. Her current engagements include work in universal health care, health technology assessment, and hospital regulation. Her practical experience also spans program-specific interventions such as in maternal and child health and health emergency management.

Alfred Ballesteros

Alfred Ballesteros

Regional Network Google Group Moderator

Alfredo Ballesteros is based in the Philippines, and is supporting Health Systems Global Asia-Pacific with its communications and by moderating the Google Group. He is also affiliated with the Alliance for Improving Health Outcomes, Inc. and Physicians for Peace Philippines; and is also pursuing post-graduate studies in International Health.