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Meeting of advisory committee (ACM) to review technical matters to be discussed at the sixty-first session of the Regional Commiittee
( 2008-08-03 )
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Meeting of advisory committee (ACM) to review technical matters to be discussed at the sixty-first Session of the Regional Commiittee
( 2008-08-03 )
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Managing human resources for accelerating reduction of maternal and neonatal mortalities
( 2008-06-06 )
Abstract

The Fifty-eighth session of the Regional Committee in 2005 endorsed a resolution on Skilled care at every birth that urges Member countries, among others: “to review the gaps in human resources for skilled care at birth and, as appropriate, to develop or modify human resource policies for skilled care at birth, which includes planning, production, placement, retention and career development”. Human resources for maternal and newborn health (MNH) include formal health-care providers or health professionals and informal health-care providers. The formal providers include community-based health providers for MNH, community-based midwife, professional nurse/nurse-midwife/midwife, medical doctors, specialists obstetrics and in neonatology and other supporting providers. In some countries of the South-East Asia (SEA) Region, community-based health providers for MNH are often insufficient in numbers, as well as in their midwifery skills. As a result, there is limited access to skilled care at birth, especially for marginalized communities. Also, specialists are very limited in number and are usually concentrated in urban areas. This has resulted in inequities for the rural community in accessing emergency obstetric and special newborn care, when needed. The proposed way forward for Member countries in the SEA Region at the policy level includes: strengthening national database on human resources for MNH; development of a long-term national plan to address the gaps for each category and ensure adequate resources and effective implementation; strengthening of human resource management for MNH services; and working with partners, nongovernmental organizations and stakeholders in developing a clear policy and plan on skilled birth attendants. The following steps need to be taken at the entry level: building strong institutions for education; assuring educational quality; and revitalizing recruitment capabilities. At the workforce level, the following measures need to be taken: bolstering the system of supervision; strengthening critical support systems; ensuring lifelong learning; and improving the collaboration between MNH health providers at community level and informal heath providers. At the exit level, migration of health workers needs to be managed, while retirement and succession planning needs to be enhanced. The role of WHO is to advocate for increasing the investment in human resources for MNH and to work together with Member countries at the policy level; assist them in strengthening human resource management for MNH services; promote the use and implementation of evidence-based policies, standards and tools for improving human resources for MNH; facilitate collaboration among stakeholders; catalyse knowledge and learning exchange; and support studies/research in the area of human resources for MNH. The attached working paper is submitted to the Meeting of the Advisory Committee (ACM) for review and recommendations on this agenda item. These recommendations will be submitted to the Sixtyfirst Session of the Regional Committee for its consideration.

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Governing bodies: review of the decisions and resolutions of the sixty-first World Health Assembly and the 122nd and 123rd sessions of the Executive Board.
( 2008-06-19 )
Abstract

The attached working paper highlights the most significant and relevant decisions and resolutions emanating from the Sixty-first World Health Assembly (held from 19-24 May 2008) as well as the 122nd and 123rd Sessions of the Executive Board (held from 21-26 January 2008 and on 26-27 May 2008 respectively). These decisions and resolutions are particularly relevant to the Member States of the WHO South-East Asia (SEA) Region, have obvious and immediate implications for them, and would merit follow-up action by both Member countries as well as WHO at the Regional Office and Country Office levels. During the Sixty-first World Health Assembly, Member countries of the SEA Region made consolidated statements on behalf of the Region on seven agenda items, which they themselves identified after considerable discussion among themselves. This was the first time that such an exercise had been undertaken. The background of the selected decisions/ resolutions, highlights from the main operative paragraphs of these selected decisions/ resolutions, as well as the regional implications of each decision and/or resolution, as applicable, and actions proposed for Member States and WHO have been presented. The working paper is submitted for consideration by the Meeting of the Advisory Committee (ACM) to review technical matters to be discussed at Sixty-first Session of the Regional Committee in 2008, with particular reference to the regional implications and actions proposed to be taken towards implementation of the recommendations contained in the selected decisions/ resolutions. The ACM may wish to consider the decisions/ resolutions as relevant (details of these decisions/ resolutions are provided in the Annex to this paper). The views and recommendations of the ACM will be submitted to the Sixty-first Session of the Regional Committee in New Delhi for review and noting, as appropriate.

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Regional Initiative on Environment and Health
( 2008-06-04 )
Abstract

WHO’s global Strategy for Health and Environment was formulated in 1993 as a response to the mandate given by the Global Commission for Sustainable Development for WHO to be the task master for coordinating the implementation of Chapter 6 of Agenda 21, on human health. A regional strategy followed soon after and countries in the South-East Asia (SEA) Region embarked on preparing their National Health and Environment Action Plans (NEHAPs) to delineate national-level operational actions. Since then, nine countries have prepared their NEHAPs and carried these through various stages of implementation. With partnerships for health development becoming ever important, it is timely that Member countries in the Region review the progress in implementing their NEHAPs and chart new ground by including newly formulated global developmental and environmental compacts such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and various other framework conventions that reflect new partnerships in environmental management and coordination. New opportunities for collaboration between and among regions of WHO and with other UN partners are also opening up, as exemplified by the Regional Ministers’ Environment and Health Initiative unveiled in Bangkok last year. These need to be expanded and pursued vigorously in order to address the impending health challenges from climate change and to achieve the MDGs. The WHO collaborative programmes reflect the continuity of this mandate and would need the concerted support of Member countries to reach the achievable targets. The views and recommendations of the Meeting of the Advisory Committee (ACM) on this agenda item will be submitted to the Sixty-first Session of the Regional Committee for its consideration.

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Public health approach to combating HIV/AIDS
( 2008-06-25 )
Abstract

The HIV epidemic continues to take its toll in the SEA Region. Yet countries have demonstrated that implementing an effective response is feasible, both to halt and reverse epidemics and to provide services to those in need. To date, efforts to scale up HIV/AIDS programmes have involved a variety of different service delivery models, guidelines and tools for multiple HIV/AIDS interventions. Countries seeking to scale up HIV/AIDS health services to achieve universal access will benefit by adopting a service delivery model that brings together the best of these approaches and helps to compensate for the significant health systems challenges that many of them face. Accordingly, WHO promotes a public health approach to the delivery of health services for HIV/AIDS, drawing upon the successful experiences of other health programmes. A public health approach is one that is directed to address the health needs of a population, or the collective health status of the people, rather than just individuals. This paper discusses the four steps of the approach: • Define the problem and the risk factors; • Find out what works to control the disease; • Scale up effective interventions in a wide range of settings; and • Monitor/evaluate the impact and cost-effectiveness of these interventions. The key lessons for a public health approach to HIV include: • The health sector’s role is central in the overall national response to the epidemic; • A scaled-up integrated package of prevention, treatment, care and support services is necessary to halt and reverse the epidemic and mitigate its impact; • Implementing a scaled-up response to the HIV epidemic requires effective programme management, trained human resources and robust health systems. The points for discussion on how the public health approach to HIV can be strengthened further are proposed in this paper. The views and recommendations of the Meeting of the Advisory Committee (ACM) on this agenda item will be submitted to the Sixty-first Session of the Regional Committee for its consideration.

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Follow-up on selected resolutions/decisions of the last three years: international migration of health personnel: a challenge for health systems in developing countries
( 2008-06-28 )
Abstract

International migration of the health workforce is a challenge for countries as it impedes the momentum of strengthening health systems. In response to Regional Committee Resolution SEA/RC60/R9 and to sustain the health workforce in a health system, the Regional Office is developing tools to assess and explore the trend or pattern of migration and categories of health workforce that migrate from and to the South-East Asia (SEA) Region. It is also developing a database for health workforce in the SEA Region that will include the yearly output of health workforce, as well as the proportion that migrates and its categories. The database will contribute towards crafting of policies and strategies for health workforce retention and setting up forums for discussion and exploration to develop a regional code of practice for the ethical recruitment of health workers that will enable government-to-government exchange of the health workforce without incapacitating the health system in the country of origin and collaboration with Global Alliance for Health Workforce, World Trade Organization, Asia Pacific Action Alliance for HRH, International Organization for Migration, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development for technical and policy dialogue. The views and recommendations of the Meeting of Advisory Committee (ACM) on this agenda item will be submitted to the Sixty-first Session of the Regional Committee for its consideration.

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Technical discussions: selection of a subject for the technical discussions to be held prior to the sixty-second session of the Regional Committee
( 2008-06-02 )
Abstract

This document lists the subjects of the Technical Discussions held since 1994 in conjunction with the sessions of the Regional Committee. It also provides a list of proposed subjects for the Technical Discussions to be held prior to the Sixty-second session of the Regional Committee in 2009. The Meeting of the Advisory Committee (ACM) is requested to review the proposed subjects for the Technical Discussions and select the subject to be submitted to the Regional Committee for consideration at its Sixty-first Session.

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Reports by country representatives on their attendance at the meeting of the coordinating bodies of WHO's global programmes, i.e.: UNDP/World Bank/WHO special programme for research and training in human reproduction: policy and coordination committee (PCC)
( 2008-06-30 )
Abstract

The Twenty-first Meeting of the Policy and Coordination Committee of the UNDP/UNFPA/ WHO/World Bank Special Programme for Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (“the Programme"), was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina on 23-25 June 2008. Representatives from three Member countries of the South-East Asia (SEA) Region, namely Bangladesh, India and Indonesia attended the meeting. The attached document is a brief report on the deliberations of the meeting.

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Reports by country representatives on their attendance at the meeting of the coordinating bodies of WHO's global programmes, i.e.: UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases: Joint Coordinating Board (JCB)
( 2008-07-02 )
Abstract

The Thirty-first meeting of the Joint Coordinating Board (JCB) was held in Rio-de Janeiro, Brazil, from 16 to 18 June 2008. Representatives from the three JCB Member countries of the South-East Asia (SEA) Region, namely Bhutan, India, and Thailand attended the meeting. In addition, Nepal attended the meeting as an Observer. The attached document contains a brief report on the deliberations of the above mentioned meeting.

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