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Launching of Online Course on Health Promotion at PAHO

Washington, D.C., 7 November 2011 (PAHO/WHO) — The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has launched a new Virtual Course on Health Promotion, which is being made available to all PAHO professional staff (at headquarters and in PAHO country offices and centers) through the Virtual Campus of Public Health.

 
The goal of the course is to build a common understanding of the basic elements of health promotion, which contributes to improving health conditions as well as to the prevention and amelioration of disease.

The course draws on multiple resources, concepts, recommendations, case studies, documents and references and was developed on the basis of an assessment by PAHO/WHO and partners of the competency needs for personnel working in the area of health promotion in Latin America and the Caribbean.

At the launch, PAHO Assistant Director Dr. Socorro Gross presented an overview of the importance of health promotion to PAHO/WHO’s work and the Organization’s efforts to mainstream health promotion into its plans and programs. Those presenting the course itself included PAHO’s Dr. Marilyn Rice and Dr. Suzanne Jackson of the PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center on Health Promotion in Canada, as well as Dr. José Jardines, Dr. Stephen Fawcett and Jerry Schultz of the PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center for Community Health and Development in the United States. PAHO’s Dr. Carlos Santos-Burgoa spoke on the future of health promotion in the Americas.

The new Virtual Course on Health Promotion was developed using an innovative and collaborative process involving contributions from PAHO/WHO’s collaborating centers as well as other individuals and institutions in the Americas. The use of cost-effective, web-based learning tools helped to strengthen international cooperation, build partnerships and ensure maximum use of the best expertise in the Region.

The PAHO/WHO Working Group on the Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Health Promotion developed an electronic template/guide that was tested and refined before being posted on the PAHO website in English and Spanish. The tool allows practitioners in the field to share local and national experiences and will facilitate the development of a database of examples and best practices to follow.

 

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