Human Resource Development and Growth: Improving Access and Equity in Education and Health Services

by PILLAY, P., 2006
Development Southern Africa, 23:01, 63-83,

Pillay demonstrates the importance of improving access to and equity in the provision of essential services such as education and health for enhancing human development. A major constraint to accelerating and sustaining economic growth in South Africa is the shortage of skilled human resources. Human capital formation (through appropriate education, training and health) is vital for growth. However, for sustained growth to reduce poverty and unemployment, human capital of a ‘higher order’ than the system is currently producing, in both quantitative and qualitative terms, must be generated. The article reviews progress in the education and health sectors and identifies the challenges. It stresses the need for policy makers to recognise the link between education and health outcomes and the provision of clean water, adequate sanitation, cheap and accessible transport and effective nutrition programmes. Addressing only the education and health services is unlikely to lead to optimal outcomes in these sectors.