Stakeholders in the Development of the National Unified Health Research Agenda of the Philippines
Objectives. Stakeholders and stakeholder engagement in agenda setting are not well documented despite its increased recognition. This paper aimed to describe stakeholder engagement in the agenda setting. Specifically, it aimed to (1) describe the process of stakeholder engagement in the development of the NUHRA 2017-2022; (2) describe characteristics of stakeholders involved; and (3) identify lessons learned during the engagement.
Methods. Documents pertinent to the agenda setting process, which included profile of participants and feedback on the consultation process were reviewed and analyzed. Key informant interviews were also conducted among selected PCHRD officials and members of the Philippine National Health Research System - Research Agenda Committee. Stakeholder mapping was conducted prior to the engagement to identify potential stakeholders. Consultations were conducted in each region involving different stakeholders. Stakeholders in the consultation process were national government agencies, local government units, academe, public and private health facilities, and non-government organizations (NGOs).
Results. The stakeholder with the highest representation was the national government (n=110), while the lowest were public and private health facilities (n=14 each). Interactive discussion of stakeholders with diverse background, is the top item that went well during the consultation and should be retained in the future, and; brainstorming session and presentation were identified item that needs improvement.
Conclusion. A diverse and well-represented set of stakeholders is important in an agenda setting to appropriately identify priorities and to improve uptake of the agenda. Stakeholder engagement, however, should not be limited to agenda setting, collaborative work must be sustained in all aspects of the research cycle.