The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with the Pan American Health Organization, held an event on the use of evidence for the formulation of public health policies that took place from November 15 to 17. In the context of the program, the Regional Network EVIPNet Americas convened, which met to discuss and assess the challenges facing Latin America and the Caribbean.
The WHO Global Evidence-to-Policy – E2P – Summit aimed to reflect on the use of evidence as a catalyst for political and social change towards more equitable, resilient, and sustainable global health. At the WHO Global E2P Summit, global experts and stakeholders came together to determine the status and prospects of evidence-informed health policy and decision-making beyond the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Key Summit conclusions were brought together in the EVIPNet Call for Action document with strong support from stakeholders and key leaders, forming a new coalition of partners for sustainable E2P systems.
EVIPNet Americas Regional Meeting: overcoming barriers to integrate scientific evidence and health policy in the Americas
As part of the E2P Summit agenda, the EVIPNet Americas Network held its meeting on November 16th, with the objective of gathering knowledge and discussing the processes of using scientific evidence for decision-making in LA&C countries. In addition, it intended to strengthen the EVIPNet Americas network as a key initiative to support countries in the region to make better policies and programs for their citizens, and to better understand their processes and contributions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The EVIPNet Regional meeting was inaugurated by Jarbas Barbosa, Deputy Director of PAHO/WHO; the Minister of Health of Brazil, Marcelo Queiroga; the Deputy Secretary of Public Health of the Ministry of Health of Chile, Paula Daza Narbona. This session was moderated by Sebastian Garcia Saisó, Director of the Department of Evidence and Intelligence for Action in Health (EIH) of PAHO/WHO and Interim Director of BIREME/PAHO/WHO.
According to Sebastián Garcia Saisó, “evidence-based decision-making for policymaking plays a central role in accelerating the achievement of the SDGs, the three billion target and the Sustainable Health Agenda for the Americas 2018-2023. The COVID19 pandemic has undoubtedly reinforced this role and highlighted the great challenges that we still must overcome in the world and in our Region to achieve the necessary strengthening of the evidence ecosystems. EVIPNet fulfills its objective by promoting the implementation and institutionalization of evidence-based policy activities in Member States.
This meeting is a convergence space for researchers, scholars, and policy makers in our Region, as well as international organizations, Member States, universities, research institutes, among many other actors, and is intended to be a catalyst for identifying lessons learned and challenges and provide recommendations to support evidence-based decision-making to spur progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals and Universal Health Coverage, as we all continue to build an increasingly robust and inclusive response to the pandemic.”
The discussions and experiences of the countries – Brazil, Chile, and El Salvador – shared at the Meeting, contributed to:
- Map existing structures, initiatives, and groups that work on using evidence for decision-making;
- Learn about knowledge translation mechanisms that facilitate the use of evidence in decision-making and its implementation;
- Identify and better characterize barriers and facilitators in the use of evidence for decision-making and its implementation; and
- Strengthen the EVIPNet Americas network as a powerful, practical community that facilitates capacity building and knowledge exchange among countries in the region.
The Meeting was coordinated by Ludovic Reveiz, from the Knowledge Translation team of the PAHO/WHO EIH Department and coordinator of the EVIPNet Americas network.
BIREME, due to its history of cooperation with EVIPNet for over 20 years, served on the Executive Committee of the E2P Summit, represented by Verônica Abdala, PFI/SCI Manager who, with the teams from WHO Headquarters, regional offices, and EVIPNet in the countries, and in coordination with EIH/PAHO/WHO, acted together in the planning and programming of the Summit and regional events.
As well as the participation of BIREME, the strengthening of knowledge translation initiatives in the LA&C Region and more visibility for the products and services developed by EVIPNet Americas in the Virtual Health Library (VHL) deserve to be highlighted. In this direction, a new Window of Knowledge about the actions of the Network was developed in conjunction with the Department of Science and Technology of the Ministry of Health of Brazil (DECIT/SCTIE/MS), which will be launched shortly.