Caribbean countries strengthen health technology management capacities

nurses organizing beds in a hospital

Washington DC, 29 November 2021 (PAHO)- The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), in collaboration with the University of Vermont, PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center in Health Technology Management, launched three main activities to strengthen Health Technology Management (HTM) capacities in Caribbean countries. 

Webinar Series on Healthcare Technology Management 

To this date, five webinars took place, gathering a total of 476 participants (health professionals, administrators, regulators, engineers, and technicians) representing 17 Caribbean countries and territories. The webinars covered a wide array of topics such as medical devices acquisition, deployment, replacement, safety, maintenance, benefits, and challenges in HTM, among others.

The themes of the webinars are listed below:

    1.    Integrated approach to health technologies – Regulation, HTA, and HTM [23 July 2021]
    2.    Showing the Value of Healthcare Technology Management [8 September 2021]
    3.    Capacity building for medical equipment maintenance support and management [29 September 2021]
    4.    Acquisition including donation guidelines and deployment of technology [22 October 2021]
    5.    Healthcare equipment safety for radiation producing and critical care devices [18 November 2021]

The recordings of the webinars are available on PAHO’s YouTube channel.  

Workshops on Key Topics for the Caribbean

A series of workshops was launched to address key areas specific to the Caribbean Region and individual Member States. The workshops are interactive and seek to identify the priorities specific to each country in relation to HTM to provide solutions to critical issues taking place in the Caribbean subregion. Workshops are carried out through presentations of international best practices, discussions of successes and failures, and networking.

Since July 2021, five virtual workshops have been carried out in Belize, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago with a total of 126 participants, representatives of health authorities and institutions. 

Two additional workshops are currently being organized and are expected to take place in December 2021. 

Community of Practice on HTM for Caribbean countries

The Community of Practice (CoP) for Health Technology Management in the Caribbean, hosted in the Regional Platform on Access and Innovation for Health Technologies (PRAIS) and coordinated by the University of Vermont, will provide a forum for the discussion of Health Technology Management challenges and practices, as well as the exchange of information and best practices. More than 50 health professionals have already registered to participate.

Health technology management is essential to ensure better use of technology, enhanced efficiency, and effectiveness, especially in settings where trained human resources and medical devices are scarce. This series of activities will enable the strengthening of the capacities for health technology management in the Caribbean sub-region.