Briefing Session: Advancing the Health Equity Agenda in the Americas

Briefing Session: Advancing the Health Equity Agenda in the Americas
Event flyer

This briefing session is part of PAHO's 60th Directing Council, which will be held in Washington, D.C., from September 25th to 29th, 2023.



The Region of the Americas is one of the most unequal regions in the world and the COVID pandemic has exacerbated and highlighted health inequities. Certain populations, depending on their social, economic, and political conditions, have disproportionately suffered during the pandemic, demonstrated through limited access to health care and experiencing the worst health outcomes. They are also particularly prone to suffer the effects from climate change.

Those living in situations of vulnerability include people living in informal settlements, without social protection, facing discrimination and social exclusion, such as Indigenous Peoples and People of African Descendant, low-income populations, sexual minorities as well as international and temporal migrants, workers in the informal economy, among others.

In 2022, the 30th Pan American Sanitary Conference adopted the Policy for recovering progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals with equity through action on the social determinants of health and intersectoral work. The PAHO Policy on Ethnicity and Health (2017) and accompanying Strategy and Plan of Action (2019), focus on closing the equity gap as do PAHO’s mandates on Gender Equality and Human Rights and Health, health promotion and Health in all Policies, workers health and Universal Health.

During the 60th Directing Council, PAHO will present progress reports on its Human Rights and Health and Ethnicity and Health resolutions, taking stock of the advances, the remaining challenges, and the opportunities for moving forward.


Date, time, and venue

September 28th, 2023  |   12:30 pm - 1:45 pm
Pan American Health Organization Headquarters, ​ Room B





Dr. Marcos Espinal, PAHO Assistant Director

12:30 pm
Opening remarks
Dr. Jarbas Barbosa da Silva Jr., PAHO Director 

12:35 pm
Video Voices from Populations in Situation of Vulnerability

Progress and Challenges in Health Equity
Dr. Gerry Eijkemans, Social and Environmental Determinants for Health Equity Department, Director

12:45 pm
Ministerial Country Panel

Working with women’s organization and community engagement processes for reducing hesitancy against the COVID-19 vaccine
Hon. Kevin Bernard, Minister of Health and Wellness, Belize

Chile health sector reform: opportunity for reducing health inequities
Dr. Raquel Child, Head of Office Cooperation and International Affairs, Ministry of Health, Chile

Integrating an Intercultural approach in the health system. Approach and outcomes
Dr. Max Enríquez Nava, Vice Minister of Promotion, Epidemiological Surveillance and Interculturality of Bolivia

1:15 pm
Discussions and considerations from the audience

1:35 pm
Closing remarks
Dr. Jarbas Barbosa da Silva Jr., PAHO Director

Dr. Jarbas Barbosa da Dilva Jr.

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