All people engaged in actions whose primary intent is to enhance health.
The World Health Organization (WHO)’s report defines the health workforce to be “all people engaged in actions whose primary intent is to enhance health.” This definition draws on the WHO’s description of “the health system” as “comprising activities whose primary goal is to improve health.” However, the health workforce as defined in the WHO report is limited to paid (and thus, traceable) workers. The overall report aims to rapidly and equitably identify potential actions, future investments, and health advancements (specifically regarding the health workforce). The chapter with this definition (Chapter 1) strives to create a global profile of the health workforce, detailing numbers and a geographical spread of health workers. It also details how much is spent on health workers, and how much is needed to address health worker shortages.
World Health Organization. “The World Health Report: 2006: Working Together for Health.” World Health Organization, 2006. https://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/43432.