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UN Chronicle. 2004 Dec; 41(4): p..The work of Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen, such as Development as Freedom, suggests that studying development offers a fertile ground for investigation and training. The beauty of the whole idea is that this possibility transcends traditional divisions of the world into more and less developed, and lends itself to encompassing components of the emerging idea of human security. Thus, the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) can be seen as a resource for education at various levels. Almost all States are committed to achieving the eight MDGs by 2015: eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; achieve universal primary education; promote gender equality and empower women; reduce child mortality; improve maternal health; combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases; ensure environmental sustainability; and develop a global partnership for health. Several studies on the MDGs and breakdowns of their attainment are emerging. (excerpt)
Report of a pre ICN workshop on Negotiating the Future of Nutrition, Johannesburg, South Africa, 18 September 2005.
Public Health Nutrition. 2005 Dec; 8(8):1229-1230.Good nutrition underpins good health. That reality has been shown in repeated studies and quantified most recently in the 2002 World Health Report of the World Health Organization (WHO). In that report, food and nutrition (their lack or over-consumption) accounted for considerable mortality and morbidity worldwide. Despite the compelling evidence of need, global action remains inadequate. Nutrition and food policy still receives considerably less attention in health policy and funding arenas than do many other lesser contributors to human health. Part of the reason relates to the lack of a strong coordinated voice for the broad area that is inclusive of all committed to and able to influence policies and actions for populations. (excerpt)
Increasing the relevance of education for health professionals. Report of a WHO Study Group on Problem-Solving Education for the Health Professions.
WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION TECHNICAL REPORT SERIES. 1993; (838):i-iv, 1-29.A consideration of current practices in problem-solving education for the health professions was the agenda of a World Health Organization (WHO) Study Group convened in Geneva, Switzerland, in October 1992. The group widened its concerns to provide a general outline of how health professional educational institutions (HPEIs) can influence health care delivery by redefining and expanding their role into the domain of health policy and service delivery. The committee's report presents information on such educational innovations as problem-based learning, student-centered education, community-based education, and community-oriented education. The effects of these innovations can be measured in terms of outcomes for the individual and outcomes for the HPEI, which include effects on the HPEIs themselves and effects on the community health sector. The report discusses 1) creating links with new partners by identifying and solving priority health problems in and with the community, 2) working in the community, 3) shaping health policy through the appropriate use of pharmaceuticals, 4) the effective use of health personnel, 5) the rational allocation of human resources, and 6) health-related legislation. The group addressed strategies for change as they apply to health systems and (HPEIs) including such barriers to changes as fear of a loss of control, failure to align innovation with the perceived needs of the HPEI or service, specific behavior on the part of innovators which jeopardized the change process, fear that change will erode professional excellence or undermine the reward system, and security considerations. Strategies for changes include encouraging broad participation, ensuring that all participating constituencies benefit, maintaining links with other innovative programs, and encouraging participation through a reward system. Organization and practical issues addressed in the committee report include factors involved with getting started, resource needs for curricular development, selecting community sites, and creating favorable administrative structures. The committee recommended that HPEIs review their mission statements, establish partnerships in the community, conduct action research, shift resources to health systems research, ensure the relevance of educational programs, evaluate programs in terms of their impact practice, ensure the use of problem-based learning techniques, and support longterm evaluation. WHO member states were advised to provide incentives and remove unnecessary barriers to collaboration, to use the potential of HPEIs to improve the health sector, to provide financial and administrative support for action research, and to ensure that research findings guide policy development. Finally, the group recommended that WHO encourage the development of guidelines and models to support action research, collaborate with HPEIs which express an interest in developing pilot collaborative projects, and encourage research efforts in HPEIs which have begun such collaboration.
Protecting breast feeding from breast milk substitutes. Royal college supports promotion of breast feeding [letter]
BMJ. British Medical Journal. 1998 Oct 3; 317(7163):949-50.The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health suggested interventions to increase the number of women who breast feed their babies in its report to the Acheson inquiry on poverty and health. The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) had a stand, which offered information on its 1991 initiative promoting breast feeding, at the trade exhibition of the college's annual general meeting in 1998. Members and fellows gave unequivocal support to a policy statement which encouraged exclusive breast feeding for the first 4-6 months of an infant's life followed by breast feeding accompanied by weaning food for as long as the mother wished. However, Costello and Sachdev, in discussing attempts by manufacturers of infant formula to seek "endorsement by association" or "passivity towards their products," chastised the Royal College for not joining an interagency group on breast feeding and for accepting research funds from infant formula manufacturers. The College did not join the interagency group because of concerns regarding the proposed research methodology. The College will accept no more research funds or donations from infant formula manufacturers until the recommendations and report of its ethics committee regarding breast milk substitute marketing, which were requested by the 1997 annual general meeting, are finished in late 1998.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 1996. , 90 p. (WHO/HRH/96.4)This booklet contains the report of a 1995 Interregional Meeting on New Public Health convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) to 1) consider the new challenges to public health rising from globalization, new diseases and epidemics, entrenched public health concerns, changing societal values, and the lack of new social sector resources and 2) formulate possible responses to these challenges. After an introduction, the report opens by reprinting a paper on the new public health and WHO's ninth general program of work, which was prepared to stimulate discussion at the meeting. The next section summarizes discussions during the meeting. Consideration of the context of public health looked at 1) the new public health and key determinants of health; 2) poverty, equity, and intersectoral partnerships; and 3) the role of WHO. Consideration of the content of public health included 1) a semantic debate on the "new" public health; 2) the content of the new public health; and 3) new public health challenges and responses. A discussion of education and research focused on training venues, the core content of training, and diversity of the public health work force. For each of these topics, the report includes specific statements adopted by the meeting. Finally, the report offers four recommendations to schools of public health, four to the WHO, and five to national governments.
In: Missing links: gender equity in science and technology for development, [compiled by] United Nations. Commission on Science and Technology for Development. Gender Working Group. Ottawa, Canada, International Development Research Centre [IDRC], 1995. 55-81.This document is the third chapter in a book complied by the UN Gender Working Group (GWG) that explores the overlay of science and technology (S&T), sustainable human development, and gender issues. This chapter addresses the nature of indigenous knowledge systems, their potential role in sustainable and equitable development, and possible strategies for promoting mutually beneficial exchanges between local and S&T knowledge systems. The introduction notes 1) that local knowledge science systems differ from modern S&T because they are managed by users of knowledge and are holistic, 2) gender roles lead to differentiation in the kind of local knowledge and skills acquired by women and by men, and 3) sustainable and equitable development depends upon full recognition and reinforcement of local knowledge systems. The chapter continues with an analysis of 1) gender, biodiversity, and new agrotechnologies; 2) gender and intellectual property rights, especially in regard to biotechnological developments based on local knowledge; and 3) the work of governments, universities, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and local groups in the areas of S&T programs with women, general women's programs, and programs focused on indigenous knowledge (with an emphasis on research in gender and indigenous knowledge systems, women promoting diversity, the comparative advantage of indigenous knowledge, and the role of NGOs and information networks). Next, the chapter considers the work of the UN and its agencies through a review of documents containing S&T agreements; support for women's rights; and work in the areas of indigenous people, biodiversity, and intellectual property rights. The chapter ends by identifying areas of critical concern and research needs.
POPIN Working Group on Dissemination of Population Information: Report on the meeting held from 2 to 4 April 1984.
Popin Bulletin. 1984 Dec; (6-7):69-79.The objectives of this meeting were: to analyze the general dissemination strategy and functions of POPIN member organizations and assess the methods currently employed to identify users; to select publications or other information output and evaluate how they are being distributed and how procedures for the selective dissemination of information are developed; to develop guidelines for determining the potential audience and reader's interests; to discuss the methodology for maintaining a register of readers' interest; to develop guidelines for establishing linds with key press and broadcasting agencies to ensure rapid dissemination of information; to dientify media and organizations currently involved in the dissemination of population information; to document experience and provide recommendations for the utilization of innovative approaches to serve audiences; and to explore ways and means to meet the special needs of policy makers. Problem areas in population information dissemination were identified at the meeting as well as priority areas in meeting speical information needs of policy makers. Collection of information for dissemination is difficult, costly and time-consuming; there is a shortage of staff trained in the repackaging and dissemination of population information; the direct use of the mass media for information dissemination is still very limited; and financial resources are limited. Priority areas include: compilation of a calendar of events or meetings; conducting media surveys and inventories of population infromation centers and their services and compilation of results; resource development through product marketing and preparation of resource catalogues; and preparation of executive summaries highlighting policy implications to facilitate policy making. Recommendations include: promotion of training and technical assistance in population information activities by the POPIN Coordinating Unit; encouraging member organizations with relevant data bases to develop subsets for distribution to other institutions and, where feasible, to provide technical assistance and support for their wider use; the POPIN Coordinating Unit should alert its members regularly of new technological facilities and innovations in the field of information; organizations conducting population information activities at the national and/or regional levels should be encouraged to provide the POPIN Coordinating Unit with yearly calendars of meetings for publication in the POPIN Bulletin; and the members of POPIN are urged to emphasize the need to incorporate specific plans and budgets for population information activities.
Report on mission to Europe and the Middle East to explore interest and potential support of education and health agencies of proposed program of education and health care, Oct. 6-30, 1976.
Wash., D.C., American Public Health Association, (1976) 22 p. plus appendixesThis consultation was designed to assess interest and potential involvement of international education and health organizations in a conference to be arranged by the World Federation for Medical Education, whose objective would be to bridge the gap between the educational complex and the voluntary and official health agencies which provide primary health care for the rural population. WHO and UNESCO agreed to co-sponsor the conference, and meetings were arranged in Paris with officials of their various sub-agencies. Further conferences in Teheran, Shiraz, Kuwait, and Egypt indicated a high level of interest in the conference topic at regional levels. The conference proposal is included as an appendix to this report. In addition, discussions with WHO officials were held concerning the status and planning for 2 bi-regional seminars on "The Physician and Population Change."
El papel de la universidad en la esfera de la poblacion. The role of the university in population, statement made at Special Convocation of the University of Panama, Panama City, Panama, 29 November, 1983.
New York, N.Y., UNFPA, . 8 p. (Speech Series No. 104)The University of Panama, as an academic and research institution, is the key to the joint implementation of government population and development programs. Many Latin American universities now have a better understanding of the complexity of the relationship between popultion and development and therefore devote more attention to this field by including demographic components in the curricula for existing specialties or creating new specialties. It is recommended that the University of Panama work constructively with the relevant technical experts to determine the position that Panama will adopt at the World Population Conference, in Mexico. If possible, such participation could help to strengthen the link between the academic community and the government in the area of population. In the final analysis, this will promote a better understanding of the dynamic relationship that exists between population and development.
Population Sciences. 1983; (4):7-15.The slow progress of family planning in Egypt is not due to the insufficiency of human and material resources. The problem lies in the distribution, management, and improvement of these resources. Research and personnel training are critical to directing efforts along the right course and towards the right objectives. The Population Council (USA), at the end of 1972, identified all findings of major significance from international research on family planning programs. Of the 322 studies, not 1 was carried out in Egypt or was based on 2ndary data from Egypt. Since 1972, though, Egyptian social and medical scientists have become actively involved in demographic themes and human reproduction. These are mainly personal iniatives, often limited by a scarcity of funds. Findings of population studies are not as transferable from 1 population to another. Also, there is a diversity of research needs. Many Muslims believe that their religion outlaws birth control. Religious objection appears the most widely shared reason for nonuse. This objection suggests a series of questions on what can be done to influence religious attitudes relating to contraception. A permanent and adequately managed institution for training in family planning and related aspects of maternal education has not been set up in Egypt. Training requirements of different levels and categories of personnel must be carefully identified. The impact of training on the quality of performance must be monitored. Training should not be limited to conventional groups of trainees. Al-Azhar's Islamic Centre for Population Studies and Research was built 5 years ago with initial aid from the United Nations Fund for Population Activities. It was an attempt to create an intellectual focus on population issues, concerning how the quality of life and Islamic standards of its quality affect each other. During the 1st 5 years, the Centre devoted itself to research activities. 44 studies were conducted.