TUCGHE has been a prime organization in providing legal technical assistances to the Ethiopian Ministry of Health (MOH) and public heath agencies under it, and Regional Health Bureaus (RHBs) since 2007.
Researchers had observed the lack of local health law capacity across the health sector when it commenced its collaborative work on Human Resource for Health Project with the Ethiopian MOH in 2007. It started its health law project with the strengthening of health professions regulation and development of Ethics standards for regulated practitioners. The Center has taken an active role providing technical assistance during the 2009 Ethiopian health reform works which exhibited a greater emphasis on statutory and regulatory frameworks across the health sector. Increasing awareness was observed among public health policy makers in using law and legal knowledge as a valuable tool to strengthen the country’s health system. As a result, many health legislation, both on healthcare and public health, have been issued at federal and regional state government level. At the federal level alone, four proclamations, three regulations, and more than 30 directives are adopted. These laws and regulations dealt with various public health concerns including licensing and disciplinary procedures for healthcare professionals; food, pharmaceutical and medical devices regulation; public health emergency preparedness, delivery of health services, individual health information privacy standards, and health institution establishments.
The Center has provided legislative drafting support over a decade mainly to the MOH, the Ethiopian Food, Medicine and Healthcare Administration and Control Authority, and RHBs. Also, it has organized and successfully delivered legal training in various health law fields to lawyers and public health practitioners at the federal and regional state level. Thus far the technical assistance has focused on providing legal support to health institutions and public health professionals in the following areas:
• Health regulatory system reform and restructuring;
• Licensing of healthcare facilities, and inspection procedures;
• Regulation of health practitioners and operation of professional ethics committees;
• Internal complaint management procedures;
• Health management information system, and privacy standards;
• Social health insurance legislation and regulations; and
• Communicable disease regulation at ports of entry
• Food, medicine, medical device, cosmetic, and tobacco regulation; and
• Regulation of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances;