Geneva Health Forum Archive

Browse and download abstracts, posters, documents and videos from past editions of the GHF

Dr. David Beran

Beran190Dr. David Beran

Researcher and Lecturer, Division of Tropical and Humanitarian Medicine, University of Geneva, Switzerland

David is a Swiss national who grew up in Geneva. He holds a BSc in Management with an Emphasis in Marketing. Following his first degree, he worked for a leading Swiss Biotech Company in both Health Policy and Government Relations and Public Relations. He then obtained his MSc in Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. For his Masters’ dissertation, David worked at the WHO looking at ways of preventing Type 2 diabetes in children. David has recently completed his PhD looking at the needs of people with Type 1 diabetes in 13 countries at University College London (UCL).

Previously David was the Project Coordinator of the International Insulin Foundation (IIF) since its establishment in November 2002 until September 2011. As of September 2011 David became Advisor to the Board of Trustees. In parallel to his role at the IIF, David was also based at the Centre for International Health and Development, Institute of Child Health, UCL, where he was a Senior Research Fellow, with both teaching and research responsibilities in the areas of health management, access to medicines, diabetes, chronic diseases and health systems in developing countries.

Dr. Manuj Weerasinghe

Weerasinghe Profile PhotoDr. Manuj Weerasinghe

Senior Lecturer, Department of Community Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka

Dr. Manuj Weerasinghe obtained MBBS degree at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo (1998) and completed internship in internal medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology at Colombo South Teaching Hospital. Then he shifted to the field of public health and obtained degrees of Masters of Science (2002) and Doctor of Medicine in Community Medicine (MD) from the Postgraduate Institute of Medicine, Colombo (2005). He won a fellowship to the Graduate School of Public Health University of Pittsburgh, USA on health policy and health programme evaluation during 2006/2007 period.

At present he serves as a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka. Dr. Weerasinghe facilitates both undergraduate and postgraduate learning in the university and functions as an examiner at both levels.  He also serves in advisory capacity for several committees in Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka. He has served as a council member of the Sri Lanka Medical Association, Sri Lanka Association for Advancement of Science and College of Community Physicians of Sri Lanka.

Dr. Yousef Shahin

PS06_Yousef_Shahin_squareDr. Yousef Shahin

Chief Disease Prevention and Control, Health Department, United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Jordan.

After graduating in Medicine and General Surgery at Zaprozyha Medical University in the Former USSR in 1985, he joined Jordan University of Science and Technology where he completed Master degree in Public Health in 1995.

Joined UNRWA in 1992 as Medical Officer in charge of health centers till 2005, when he was promoted to a senior position at UNRWA headquarters. He has more than 8 years’ experience in disease prevention and control programme, and responsible for the development, monitoring and evaluation of the UNRWA’s progrmme for disease prevention and control by preparing technical instructions, clinical guidelines, periodic assessment and supervision of related activities.

Dr. Shahin was designated to World Health Organization/ Eastern Mediterranean Region from July-December 2011 as Technical Officer on non- communicable diseases.

He has publications in medical journals including the Lancet on different health topics mainly diabetes care among Palestine Refugees. Participated in many international conferences and workshops addressing public health related topics.

Dr. Nicholas Banatvala

Nick Banatvala_squareDr. Nick Banatvala

Senior Adviser to the Assistant Director General, Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health, World Health Organization, Switzerland.

Dr. Nick Banatvala is currently Senior Adviser to the Assistant Director General (Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health) at WHO in Geneva. Current responsibilities include leading development of a global coordination mechanism for the prevention and control of  NCDs, spearheading a newly set up UN NCD Taskforce and leading WHO’s global training programme to build capacity on NCDs for senior policy makers in middle and low-income countries.

Prior to this, Nick was Head of Global Affairs at the Department of Health in England where he led the development and implementation of the UK Government's first-ever global health strategy, its strategy for working with WHO and DH’s bilateral engagement with emerging economies. Before that, he headed up DFID’s work on global health initiatives and scaling up health services. This included leading on the health inputs for the 2005 G8 Gleneagles communiqué. He has represented the UK on a number of international initiatives, including the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria and GAVI. Prior to this, Nick worked for DFID on health programmes in Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Middle East. Nick has experience of the NGO sector, having worked with the UK aid agency Merlin on development and humanitarian programmes.

Nick trained in paediatrics and infectious diseases and then did public health and epidemiologic research in the UK and at CDC, Atlanta. Nick has also held senior posts in UK public health. Nick has sat on government, non-government and academic boards, as well as national and international committees. He has undertaken consultancies for a number of agencies including the World Bank.

GHF2014 – PS05 – Health Services Integration and Disease Control Programmes

PS05 TUESDAY, 15 APRIL 2014 ROOM: 13 ICON_Fishbowl
Health Services Integration and Disease Control Programmes
Marianne Pirard, MD
Educational Coordinator of the Public Health department, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium
Amina Essolbi, MD, MPH,
Senior lecturer Ecole Nationale de Santé Publique, Rabat, Morocco
Basile Keugoung, MD, MPH, PhD student,
Ministry of Public Health, Yaounde, Cameroon
Raoul Bermejo, MD, MPH, PhD student,
Researcher, Department of Clinical Epidemiology, University of the Philippines College of Medicine, Philippines
There is currently a broad consensus in the global community on the need for Health Systems Strengthening (HSS) to make further progress toward the Millennium Development Goals. The recent momentum around UHC, a likely post-MDG goal, is another example of this. However, there is still divergence on how HSS should be framed and how it should be done in practice.In this session we will present three frameworks to guide HSS with applied examples from different countries. We intend to discuss the relevance of these HSS frameworks and exchange experiences in HSS with a diverse audience bringing the perspective from actors such as first line health workers, health system and disease control programme managers, decision makers, international organisations and donors working in diverse settings (LICs & MICs, different continents).

Marianne Pirard
Marianne Pirard
is a medical doctor with an MPH from the Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM), Antwerp. She currently is the Educational Coordinator of the Public Health department of ITM and is in charge of the organization of an international MPH with a track in Health Systems & Policy and a track in Disease Control.Before joining ITM in 2002, she worked for 5 years as a clinician in a rural district in Zimbabwe in a period its health system based on PHC principles was an example for the region (1986-91). She also spent 8 years in Bolivia as a Public Health physician, strengthening the National Centre for Tropical Diseases in its operational research and surveillance activities. (1994-2002)She believes that stronger synergies between health service managers and disease control programme managers can make health systems stronger.


Amina Essolbi

Amina Essolbi is a medical doctor with an MPH from Boston University.
She has worked for 5 years as medical officer before being recruited by USAID-Morocco as health care specialist (1994-98).
Thereafter, she joined the National School of Public Health (ENSP) in Morocco where she is a lecturer. She also teaches in different national and international short courses (VIH-AIDS, Ipact, continuing education) on matters related to strategic planning, project management, epidemiology and disease surveillance.

Her current domain of research is related to the role of home caregivers, the effects of free health care policies on the local health system and the conditions and mechanisms of success or failure of policy implementation.


Basile Keugoung

Basile Keugoung is a medical doctor, with a Master in Public Health in Health system management and policy from the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp-Belgium. He is registered as a PhD candidate at the Louvain Catholic University, Brussels-Belgium since 2010. He has a 10-year experience of working as a district medical officer in Cameroon. He is also co-facilitator of the Community of Practice Health Service Delivery (, and one of the Editors of the Newsletter ‘Politiques Internationales de Santé ( His field of research is the interface between vertical programmes and the general health system. The aim is to find avenues for optimizing the interface between vertical programmes and the recipient health system.


Raoul Bermejo

Raoul Bermejo III, MD, MPH

Researcher, Department of Clinical Epidemiology, University of the Philippines College of Medicine.

PhD Student at the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium.

He is a medical doctor with experience in managing Reproductive, Maternal, and Child Health and Nutrition Programs in the Philippines. He also worked as a consultant for the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation. His current research work is focused on understanding how health systems in low and middle income countries are adapting to the rise in the burden of non-communicable diseases. He is also interested in global and local discussions on UHC.

When he is not thinking about global health problems, he dives and restores traditional Ifugao houses.

GHF2014 – PL05 – Integrating Health, Wellbeing and Sustainability

Dr. Carlos Dora
Department of Public Health and Environment, World Health Organization, Switzerland
H.E. Ambassador Michael Gerber 
Ambassador and Special Representative for Global Sustainable Development Post-2015, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Switzerland
Mrs. Pam Warhurst 
Founder and Chair, Incredible Edible Tordmorden, United Kingdom
Mrs. Meenakshi Raman
Third World Network, Malaysia
Mr. Rick Bell
Executive Director, American Institute of Architects New York Chapter, Center for Architecture, United States
Discuss how to better integrate the three dimensions of sustainable development and embed health into the post 2015 new development agenda.
The Millennium Declaration adopted by the heads of State at the Millennium Summit in 2000 has constituted the dominant development paradigm and organizing framework of the last decade. The Millenium Development Goals have substantially contributed to focus development co-operation efforts, strengthened the accountability requirement and mobilized support. With the Millennium Development Goals scheduled to come to an end in 2015, the international community is now taking stock of the substantial advances made as well as the unevenness and gaps in achievement. As we approach the 2015 deadline, unrelenting efforts are required to accelerate progress across all the goals but debates and global consultations about what will replace the MDGs have already taken place. In June  2012, on  the  occasion of the Rio+20 Conference on  Sustainable Development, another mandate  with  similar  aspirations  was  born:  the  Sustainable  Development  Goals  (SDGs). Whilst the MDGs primarily focused on social issues such as poverty, hunger, health and education in developing countries, SDGs will seek to strike a balance between all three dimensions of sustainable development, namely the economic, environmental and the social, and will be applicable for all countries.Health as a component of social progress is a key aspect of the debates, and is being framed as a precondition for, an outcome and a possible indicator of sustainable development.The position health might take into this new framework is still subject to various narrative exercises and a lot of uncertainty still remains of what will be the next development framework by 2015.Moving away from global statements and declarations, the session will convey a diverse panel of actors involved in development, urban planning and community mobilization to discuss the enabling environment needed at a global and local level to build healthier societies and preserve our environment.Some of the questions to be discussed include:

  • What kind of systemic global reforms would be required to secure an accommodating international environment for sustainable development in both developed and developing countries?
  • How can health serve as an indicator to measure sustainable development policies progress, achievement and impact?
  • How can local communities, people’s movements and citizens contribute in shaping healthier and more inclusive societies/cities?
  • How can urban design influence behavioral changes and promote healthy living?

Carlos Dora_squareDr. Carlos Dora

Carlos Dora, is a coordinator at the WHO HQ Public Health and Environment Department, leading work on health impacts of sector policies (energy, transport, housing and extractive industry), health impact assessment and co-benefits from green economy/climate change policies. He previously worked at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), at the WHO Regional Office for Europe, at the World Bank, and with primary care systems in Brazil after practicing medicine. He serves in many science and policy committees, has an MSc and PhD from the LSHTM.  His publications cover health impact of sector and sustainable development policies, HIA and health risk communication.


Michael Gerber Jan. 2013H.E. Ambassador Michael Gerber

Perspective: Switzerland’s position on the new Sustainable Development Framework

Member of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Mr Gerber was the Head of the SDC Analysis and Policy Section before being appointed Special Representative for Global Sustainable Development Post-2015 by the Federal Council with the rank of ambassador. In this position, he has been given the task of formulating Switzerland’s position on a Framework for Sustainable Development Post-2015 . Ambassador Gerber is also representing Switzerland in the Open Working Group on SDGs (Switzerland shares with France and Germany).


PL05_Pam_WarhurstMrs. Pam Warhurst

Perspective: How to empower ordinary people to take control of their communities through active civic engagement.

Pam Warhurst is a British community leader, activist and environment worker best known for co-founding the community initiative, Incredible Edible, in Todmorden, West Yorkshire.

Pam studied Economics at the University of Manchester. She has previously served as a member of the Board of Natural England, where she was the lead non-executive board member working on the Countryside & Rights of Way Bill. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts & Manufacturing, and chairs Pennine Prospects, a regeneration company for the South Pennines, and Incredible Edible Todmorden, a local food partnership. Pam has also been Deputy Chair and Acting Chair of the Countryside Agency, leader of Calderdale Council, a board member of Yorkshire Forward, and chair of the National Countryside Access Forum and Calderdale NHS Trust. Pam was awarded Commander of the Order of the British Empire award (CBE) in 2005 for services to the environment.

PL05_Meenakshi_Raman_squareMrs. Meenakshi Raman

Perspective: How to tackle the growing environment crises factoring international equity in the equation?

Mrs Raman is Legal Advisor and Senior Researcher at Third World Network (TWN) and is based in Geneva. She is also a Member of the Board of Friends of the Earth International and Honorary Secretary to Friends of the Earth Malaysia (Sahabat Alam). As Legal Advisor to the Consumers’ Association of Penang in Malaysia, she currently heads its Community Mobilization Section, which works with farmers and fisher folk. She has served as Chair of Friends of the Earth International (2004-2008), an international organization with 77 member groups. At Third World Network, Meenakshi currently coordinates the Climate Change Programme and has actively been involved in the intergovernmental climate negotiations, from Bali to Cancun. She has been monitoring and reporting on the negotiations and providing analysis and support both to developing country governments as well as to civil society participants. Upon graduation in 1982, Meenakshi and a colleague set up the first public interest law firm in Malaysia, which launched her legal practice assisting consumers. In the past 25 years, she has represented the organizations she works with at numerous conferences and presented papers on issues ranging from environmental and consumer protection, to climate change, agriculture and fisheries, and globalization and trade.

PS25_Rick Bell_squareMr. Rick Bell

I became an architect because of the inspirational oratory of professors including Vincent Scully and the physical example of buildings seen while attempting, at the age of 19, to hitchhike from Paris to Dakar. As an architect I've had three careers, first in the private sector, then at a public agency, and, most recently, in the not-for-profit domain. As a private architect, I mostly designed schools and libraries in a NYC-based firm that also did hotel projects worldwide. In the public sector, I served as chief architect and assistant commissioner of New York City’s public works department, responsible for 700 projects annually. And for the last twelve years I’ve led the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects and created its storefront Center for Architecture.

GHF2014 – PL02 – Integrated Health Systems in a Pluralistic and Fast Changing Environment

Prof. Don de Savigny
Head, Health Systems Interventions Research Unit, Department of Public Health and Epidemiology, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Switzerland
Prof. Recep Akdağ
Former Minister of Health of Turkey between 2002 and 2013, Turkey
Mr. Jacques Mader
Regional Health Advisor, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Switzerland
Prof. Manoris Meshack
Team Leader, Health Promotion System Strengthening Project in Dodoma, Tanzania
Dr. David B. Evans
Director, Department of Health Systems Financing, World Health Organization, Switzerland
Discuss the drivers and enabling factors that determine health systems ‘ability to better integrate their critical functions.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health systems as all organizations, people, and actions whose primary intent is to promote, restore, or maintain health. An effective health system is a core institution, no less important than a fair justice system or democratic political system. Depending how they are designed and governed health systems can empower people thus alleviating suffering or further exclude them, deepening inequity and worsening the experience of poverty. Strong and equitable health systems contribute to the progress toward universal health coverage and sustainable development. In a context of profound demographic and epidemiological changes and highly pluralistic environments characterized by multiple public and private providers, the integration of the various activities, resources and actors that are shaping health systems remains a challenge.Drawing on the experiences three countries pursuing reforms to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) and the personal journeys of actors involved in health system development, this session will aim to discuss the contextual drivers and factors that are shaping health systems transformation towards universal health coverage.

Don de Savigny_squareProf. Don de Savigny

Professor de Savigny is an epidemiologist and public health specialist and currently Head of the Health Systems Research Unit in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel.  He has extensive experience in conducting and facilitating health research in developing countries and has lived and worked for many years in Africa.  He chairs or is a member of a number of WHO, RBM, Global Fund, and TDR advisory committees and networks such as COHRED, the Health Metrics Network and the INDEPTH Network.  His current research focuses on interventions to strengthen health systems in developing countries, and on the health system effects of Global Health Initiatives for scaling up access.


RecepAkdagSquareProf. Recep Akdağ, Turkey

Recep Akdag was born in Erzurum, Turkey in 1960. As a pediatrician, he has been holding a professor title from the Ataturk University School of Medicine since 1999. During his career as a medical specialist and academician, he had been involved in a number of administrative tasks. Between 1994 and 1998, he worked as the Deputy Chief Medical Director, Chairman of the Procurement Commission and Deputy Editor of the Medical Bulletin in the Research Hospital of the Medical Faculty of Ataturk University. He also co-founded the Biotechnology Research Center of the University and served as the Deputy Head of the Center from 1997 to 2000. (Read more...)


jacques Mader_squareMr. Jacques Mader

Jacques Mader has several decades of multifaceted experience of the health sector in various positions. He’s always been more of a practitioner than a theoretician, more of a (critical) user than a producer of research results. Over the years and thanks to his practice in a great variety of contexts he has become increasingly pragmatic. He strives to use his expertise to promote equity in the access to health resources as well as a broader approach on the determinants of health.


Prof. Manoris Meshack

Manoris Meshack was a Team leader of a component of Tanzania Essential Health Project in Developing a community based approach for rehabilitation for Health facilities for Morogoro and Rufiji; after successful completion of the two regions was tasked to roll out the plan to the whole country. Trained District teams and village teams of the same districts and supervised the implementation which was very successful both by constructing the facilities, developing a sustainable maintenance system and reduction of costs. Thereafter Lead a multidisciplinary team for developing, training and implementation  a countrywide approach on community infrastructure rehabilitation in the process rolling out of the approach, to the whole country on the same approach.

From 2001 he was founder member for initiating Tanzania network for Community Health Funds and was the first Secretary General of the Network until he retired in 2006.

He also acted as consultant in Dar es salaam Urban Health Project; he acted as facilitator in Lake Victoria Basin Development program and operated in East African contest.

Manoris Meshack has been Deputy Vice Chancellor Planning and Finance latter promoted to Vice Chancellor Academics. He was appointed to start a New University and acted for one 1year as Project leader before he was appointed to the post of Vice Chancellor until the completion of his term. From 06/2011 to date Manoris Meshack has been employed  as a Team leader of Health Promotion System Strengthening project in Dodoma.


David_evansDr. David B. Evans

David B. Evans, Director of the Department of Health Systems Financing in the Cluster on Health Systems and Services at WHO, has a PhD in economics and worked as an academic and consultant in Australia and Singapore before joining WHO in 1990. His work has covered the social and economic aspects of tropical disease control, the assessment of health system performance and the generation, analysis and use of evidence for health policy. His current responsibility is the development of effective, efficient and equitable health financing systems, through technical support to countries, generation and use of evidence, capacity strengthening and partnership with other development agencies and initiatives. He was the lead author for the World Health Report 2010 (Health Systems Financing: the Path to Universal Coverage).




GHF2014 – PS30 – Debate Motion: “This house believes reverse innovation in health is a distinct category of innovation that holds the key to creating effective future health solutions.”

Debate Motion: “This house believes reverse innovation in health is a distinct category of innovation that holds the key to creating effective future health solutions.”
Dr. Greg Martin
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Globalization and Health, Ireland
Dr. Shams B. Syed
Program Manager, African Partnerships for Patient Safety (APPS), Global Partnerships Lead, WHO Service Delivery & Safety (SDS), Switzerland
Ms. Vivasvat Dadwal
Senior Fellow at the University of Ottawa, Centre on Governance, Canada
Mrs. Bronwyn Lay
Writer, Jurist, Australia
Dr. Sunoor Verma
Executive Director, Geneva Health Forum, Switzerland

photo greg martinDr. Greg Martin
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Globalization and Health, Ireland

Dr. Greg Martin is a South African doctor with a masters in public health and an MBA degree. Dr Martin’s involvement in global health has spanned a wide rang of subject matter including maternal and child health, cancer prevention, access to medicine and the treatment and care of people living with HIV, amongst others. He recently stepped down from the role of Director of Elimination of Mother to Child Transmission at the Clinton Health Access Initiative in order to move to Ireland where he recently got married. He is currently with Editor-in-Chief of the journal Globalization and Health and runs a Global Health YouTube channel as well as working as a clinician in a local hospital in Dublin.


ShamsSyedIMG_2475Dr. Shams B. Syed, Program Manager, African Partnerships for Patient Safety (APPS), Global Partnerships Lead, WHO Service Delivery & Safety (SDS), Switzerland

Dr. Shams Syed is responsible for overseeing African Partnerships for Patient Safety (APPS), based at WHO Headquarters in Geneva. He has led the development and implementation of the programme since its inception in 2008. He assumed responsibility for global partnership development in the newly formed WHO Department of Service Delivery & Safety in 2013. Dr. Syed received his medical degree from St. George’s, University of London, and subsequently practiced as an independent General Practitioner in the UK. He received postgraduate public health training at the University of Cambridge. Subsequently, he trained in Preventive Medicine at Johns Hopkins University, is US Board Certified in Public Health & Preventive Medicine and a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine. His previous experiences include: involvement in a future-focused multi-country health systems research consortium; working at the Pan American Health Organization with seven Caribbean countries on strengthening health systems with a focus on surveillance systems; and working as the Advisor on Family and Community Health at the WHO Country Office in Trinidad and Tobago with a focus on quality of care. Dr. Syed has a focused academic interest in reverse innovation in global health systems.


PS03_Vivasvat_DadwalMs. Vivasvat Dadwal

Viva is a civil servant by day, community-builder by night. Viva's multidisciplinary interests span local, national, and international spheres. She is engaged in a range of socially and politically minded activities - from Canadian history to global health. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre on Governance at the University of Ottawa and Associate Editor of the London School of Economics-affiliated journal Globalization and Health. She has held prestigious internships at the World Health Organization and Permanent Mission of Canada to the United Nations and to the World Trade Organization in Geneva. She is also a guest blogger for World Bank's youth blog, Youthink! Viva holds a B.Sc. (Hons) in Biology from the University of Windsor, and an M.A. in Public and International Affairs from the University of Ottawa.


Sunoor -130Dr. Sunoor Verma
Executive Director, Geneva Health Forum, Switzerland

Dr. Sunoor Verma is the Executive Director Geneva Health Forum.As a senior development expert, Sunoor Verma has worked in emergency, conflict and post-conflict situations. He has led the establishment of complex partnerships and coalitions by negotiating strategic agreements and their implementation plans. He has set up programs across sectors, including, Education, Health, Protection, Injuries, Sanitation, HIV/AIDS, Harm Reduction, Conflict Resolution, Refugees, Internally Displaced Persons, Environment, Culture, Gender, Minority issues etc. He has worked in various locations, including Western Europe, South East Europe, South Asia, South East Asia, North Africa and Australia. Among others, he consulted and worked with UNHCR, UNICEF, and the European Centre for Minority Issues, Cambridge University and the Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons. Sunoor Vema has been the principal consultant of the strategy consulting practice ‘ProCube’ and is the founder of

He is a seasoned speaker on the topics of strategy, partnerships and leadership. He is also sought after for his skills as an effective moderator on high-voltage panels. In a previous avatar, Sunoor Verma was a practicing cardiothoracic surgeon.


PS30_Lay Profile PhotoMrs. Bronwyn Lay

Bronwyn Lay currently lives with her family in rural France near the Swiss border.

Before moving overseas, Bronwyn worked as a legal aid lawyer in Melbourne, obtained post-graduate qualifications in political theory and was involved with various community organisations.

She now spends her time writing and pondering the world from the safety of her vegetable patch.


GHF2014 – PS27 – Health as an Indicator of Sustainable Development: How Health Can Contribute to and Benefit from Sustainable Policies

Health as an Indicator of Sustainable Development: How Health Can Contribute to and Benefit from Sustainable Policies
Dr. Carlos Dora
Department of Public Health and Environment, World Health Organization, Switzerland
Prof. Ilona Kickbush
Director, Global Health Programme, The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland
Health as an Indicator of Sustainable Development: How Health Can Contribute to and Benefit from Sustainable Policies
Ms. Natalie Mrak
Student, Masters of Development Studies, The Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies, Switzerland
Mr. Callum Brindley
Student, Masters of Development Studies, The Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies, Switzerland
Dr. Ralph Chapman, Environmental Studies Director, Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand
Dr. Philippa Howden-Chapman, Professor of Public Health, University of Otago, and Director of the New Zealand Centre for Sustainable Cities, New Zealand
This session will begin with a comprehensive overview of the expansive literature, encompassing more than 20 years, on how health indicators can serve as measures of sustainable development and the presentation of a tool that has been developed which essentially combines all of this literature on indicators into one space. This will then set the stage for discussion on how this literature can essentially be placed into action. The session will entail perspectives from local, national and global levels as well as academic circles in order to provide a more comprehensive overview of the progress that has been made in incorporating health into sustainable development objectives as well as the challenges and the bottlenecks which still remain. The aim is to stimulate creative thinking and discussion around innovative ways through which health can become more embedded in the sustainable development agenda.This discussion is crucial particularly as the post-2015 development agenda talks continue. While the first set of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were a momentous endeavor to tackle crucial issues affecting the most vulnerable, they did not provide a comprehensive and integrated approach to tackling these challenges. Health was a dominant theme in the first set of MDGs, composing 3 of 8 goals but as 2015 approaches it is apparent that these goals do not comprehensively address the major health challenges of the 21st century for both developed and developing countries alike. While barriers to overcoming communicable diseases, maternal and child health still exist, issues such as tropical diseases (NTDs) and non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are posing challenges to existing approaches to health. A horizontal integrative approach is crucial to overcoming these new health challenges. For instance, good water and sanitation could prevent the infection from the majority of  NTDs while changes in daily routines, such as the substitution of motor transport for public or active transport, could reduce the incidence of NCDs.While recent literature has called for the inclusion of health in the post-2015 sustainable development agenda, there has not been a substantial discussion on how it could fit into this agenda and what exactly this health goal would look like as well as its feasibility at all levels of government from global to national to local.

Carlos Dora_squareDr. Carlos Dora

Carlos Dora, is a coordinator at the WHO HQ Public Health and Environment Department, leading work on health impacts of sector policies (energy, transport, housing and extractive industry), health impact assessment and co-benefits from green economy/climate change policies. He previously worked at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), at the WHO Regional Office for Europe, at the World Bank, and with primary care systems in Brazil after practicing medicine. He serves in many science and policy committees, has an MSc and PhD from the LSHTM.  His publications cover health impact of sector and sustainable development policies, HIA and health risk communication.

Ilona KickbushProf. Ilona Kickbush

Ilona Kickbusch is the Director of the Global Health Programme at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva. She advises organisations, government agencies and the private sector on policies and strategies to promote health at the national, European and international level. She has published widely and is a member of a number of advisory boards in both the academic and the health policy arena. She has received many awards and served as the Adelaide Thinker in Residence at the invitation of the Premier of South Australia. She has recently launched a think-tank initiative “Global Health Europe: A Platform for European Engagement in Global Health” and the “Consortium for Global Health Diplomacy”.

Her key areas of interest are global health governance, global health diplomacy, health in all policies, the health society and health literacy. She has had a distinguished career with the World Health Organization, at both the regional and global level, where she initiated the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion and a range of “settings projects” including Healthy Cities. From 1998 – 2003 she joined Yale University as the head of the global health division, where she contributed to shaping the field of global health and headed a major Fulbright programme. She is a political scientist with a PhD from the University of Konstanz, Germany.

PS27_Natalie_MrakMs. Natalie Mrak

Natalie   Mrak is a Global  Health  Project Coordinator with the Access to Health (A2H) team. In  parallel, she is also pursuing a Master´s in Development Studies, with a concentration on Human, Financial and Economic Development, at the Graduate Institute for International and  Development Studies (IHEID).  At  the  Institute,  she  is  focusing  on  global health issues. including  health  and  sustainable  development  as  well  as  the role of emerging  economies  in  global  health  governance and diplomacy. While in Geneva,   Natalie   has   interned  for  Otsuka  Pharmaceuticals  in  their communications  division  and in the community mobilization unit at UNAIDS. Prior  to  her  arrival in Geneva, Natalie worked at UNICEF headquarters in New York for 4 years as the Executive Assistant to the Chief of the HIV and AIDS  programme. In addition, she has a Master´s in International Relations from  the  City College of the City University of New York (CCNY) where she focused  on  gender  and  development  issues  in  Eastern  Europe. Natalie received  her  Bachelor´s  degree  from Kenyon College where she received a dual degree in History, with honors distinction, and Spanish Studies as well as Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa honors.

PS27_Callum_BrindleyMr. Callum Brindley

Callum Brindley is studying a Masters of Development Studies at the Graduate Institute for International and Development Studies in Geneva. He is also a part-time researcher with the Global Health Programme and has co-authored two WHO publications on Health in All Policies and health in the post-2015 development agenda. Prior to his post-graduate studies, Callum worked for three years with the Australian Agency for International Development.

Ralph Chapman (aug06) VUW photoDr. Ralph Chapman

Ralph directs the Graduate Programme in Environmental Studies at Victoria University. An environmental economist, he’s worked on energy, transport, urban design and climate change. He’s also worked with the New Zealand Ministry for the Environment, the NZ Treasury; the British Treasury in Whitehall; the OECD, in the Beehive, and as a negotiator for New Zealand of the Kyoto Protocol. Ralph has a first in engineering, a Masters in public policy, and a PhD in economics.

GHF2014 – PS26 – The Potential of One Health and EcoHealth Approaches to Health and Wellbeing

The Potential of One Health and EcoHealth Approaches to Health and Wellbeing
Dr. Jacob Zinsstag
Professor, PhD, DVM, Group Leader, Head of Unit , Swiss Tropical & Public Health Institute, Switzerland
Prof. Bassirou Bonfoh
Director of the Swiss Centre for Scientific Research (CSRS) Abidjan, Ivory Coast
Dr. Margot Parkes
Canada Research Chair in Health, Ecosystems and Society, University of Northern British Columbia, Canada
Dr. Maya K. Gislason
Associate Researcher, Centre for Global Health Policy, University of Sussex, UK
Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Health Sciences, University of Northern British Columbia, Canada
Dr. Esther Schelling
Mobile populations and Health, Swiss TPH, Switzerland
One Health and EcoHealth are new concepts. Many people use the terms but often without knowing what they mean. This session will present key examples of One Health and Ecohealth approaches, demonstrating the added value of closer cooperation between human and animal health sectors in terms of health and wellbeing of humans and animals. Human health is inextricably linked to intact ecosystems, yet we overuse and destroy them in a way which increasingly affects our health. Health and ecosystem integrity have to be considered together. This requires participatory transdisciplinary approaches of negotiation of trade-offs between different perspectives. Transdisciplinary approaches are inherent to One Health and Ecohealth approaches and this session will provide a unique opportunity for the broader understanding of the concepts and future orientation of research in Switzerland and globally.

Dr. Jacob Zinsstag

Jakob Zinsstag graduated with a doctorate in veterinary medicine (Dr. med. vet.) on Salmonella diagnosis at the Veterinary Faculty of the University of Berne in 1986. After his studies he worked in rural practice and as post doctoral fellow on trypanosomiasis research at the Swiss Tropical Institute. From 1990 to end of 1993 he led a livestock helminthosis project for the University of Berne at the International Trypanotolerance Centre in The Gambia. From 1994 to 1998 he directed the Centre Suisse de Recherches Scientifiques in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Since 1998 he leads a research group at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) in Basel on the interface of human and animal health with a focus on health of nomadic people and control of zoonoses in developing countries under the paradigm of  “one medicine”. He holds a PhD in Tropical Animal Production from the Prince Leopold Institute of Tropical Medicine of Antwerp, Belgium. Since 2004 he is Assistant Professor and since 2010 Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Basel. He is a diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Public Health (ECVPH) and member of the scientific advisory board of the Prince Leopold Institute of Tropical Medicine of Antwerp, Belgium. Jakob Zinsstag has been elected president of the International Association for Ecology and Health in 2012.