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Washington, D.C., 26 March 2013 (PAHO/WHO) - In a joint effort, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), Virtual Campus for Public Health and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) have organized a virtual course on public health functions, which aims at strengthening awareness and knowledge of Essential Public Health Functions, stakeholders, and responsibilities they should assume in this framework. Training will also be provided in proposal design based on these essential functions in the region.

The course, which will run from 2 May to 10 September, will have limited space. Target participants include managers of health systems and services for the ministries of health and social security institutions, leaders and coordinators of health policies and programs, and professors from universities and public health schools specializing in educating health professionals.

The five-module course will be given in Spanish on the Virtual Campus for Public Health. The goal is to develop management capabilities of the Essential Public Health Functions to help strengthen national health systems and improve health conditions of populations in the Region of the Americas.

During the 128-hour course, the curriculum will cover the fundamentals of health systems, governance, performance, health system results, key public health strategies and proposed interventions, among other topics.

Upon completion of the course, participants will have the tools to mobilize from measurement to action to improve the practice of public health, developing capacities in infrastructure, and strengthen the national health authorities' steering role.

The training activity is framed within the work performed by the PAHO/WHO Area of Primary Health Care Based Health Systems to strengthen health systems in the Americas, focused on reform and strengthening health authorities' functions.

The "Public Health in the Americas" Initiative is an agreement among the Region's countries to promote regional consensus on public health and its essential functions. Eleven Essential Public Health Functions are defined in the initiative, describing competencies and actions health systems need to take to improve the populations' health. Evaluation of these essential functions helped identify the gaps that need to be reduced in order to improve performance of public health.

People interested in participating in the course must register by April 1st at the Virtual Campus for Public Health's website: http:/


Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 March 2013 11:37

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