Update on publications and events related to primary health care and community health

1 November, 2022

Dear friends and colleagues with an interest in primary health care and community health:

You are receiving this email because of your interest in primary health care and community health.

[*see note from HIFA moderator below]

Two items of note have arisen from the recent annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly that began on September 13.

Item 1: The Lancet Commission on Lessons for the Future from the COVID-19 Pandemic

On September 14, The Lancet published a comprehensive review <https://www.thelancet.com/action/showPdf?pii=S0140-6736%2822%2901585-9> concerning the COVID-19 pandemic and steps that need to be taken to recover from it and prepare for the next one. A copy is also attached. It is a wide-ranging authoritative 45-page article with many authors led by Jeffrey Sachs. From our standpoint, it is noteworthy that the Commission makes a resounding call for major increases of domestic and international funding for building stronger primary health care programs with community-based programming provided by community health workers.

Item 2: During the week of the UN General Assembly meetings in New York, a number of organizations were actively promoting the PHC and community health agenda, including the Community Health Impact Coalition<https://chwimpact.org/> and Africa Frontline First<https://www.africafrontlinefirst.org/>. Here are two notable quotes that were highlighted:

"The legacy of COVID-19 must be robust and resilient primary healthcare systems with community health workers as the backbone for its delivery. Together, we can build the coalitions of actors required to make bold reforms and build back better for the COVID-19 response, and beyond.”


[Community health workers] can truly be the nexus between universal health coverage and health security, as they can improve access and uptake of health services, sanitation and hygiene, and primary healthcare to the community and improve overall health outcomes.”


Item 3: Forthcoming day-long conference on community health workers in Boston on Saturday November 5 on the theme “Community Health Workers at the Dawn of a New Era”

The 23rd annual workshop of the Community-based Primary Health Care Working Group of the International Health Section of the American Public Health Association will take place on Saturday, November 5, from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. Registration is available here. <https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fapha20... The deadline for registrations is today (Oct 31). If anyone wants to register after the deadline, please contact Andrew Herrera <mailto:andrew@curamericas.org>. The cost is $35 for practitioners from developed countries, $25 for students, and $15 for CHWs and for practitioners from developing countries. You don't have to register for the APHA conference in order to be able to attend. Submissions of poster presentations from community health workers and students on the workshop theme are being accepted as well.

Item 4: Video made by Jon Rohde

Joe Valadez <https://www.lstmed.ac.uk/about/people/professor-joseph-valadez>, long-term colleague who is Professor of International Health at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene has recently worked with Jon Rode to create a video of Jon and his extraordinary career in global health that focuses on primary health care and community health, describing his work with Jim Grant when Jim was Executive Director of UNICEF in the 1980s and 1990s and his seminal contributions to programs in Indonesia, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, South Africa and elsewhere. The video, entitled History of Community Primary Health Care, is available here <http://www.bit.ly/JRohde-Lectures>. It is part of a teaching series Joe has developed. The companion lecture on the early history of community-based primary health care made by John Wyon (a mentor to both Joe and me) just before John’s death is available here <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zN49mBkJts&t=12s>. Jon Rohde recently wrote a reflection on his life’s work that was published in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia in Global Health, entitled “Ten Lessons From a Career in Global Health: Guidance to Those Considering a Life Working With the Poor Countries of the World.” A copy is attached. I shared this a few months back as well. All of these are great teaching tools and highly informative.

Item 5: Resolution introduced to the US House of Representatives

On 20 September 2022 a coalition in the US House of Representatives introduced the Paul Farmer Memorial Resolution that calls for the United States government to greatly expand its investments in global health as a tribute to the life and work of Paul Farmer and his vision for global health equity. The resolution calls for, among many things, “supporting professionalized community health worker programs whereby community health workers are recruited, adequately compensated, comprehensively trained, supported for long-term retention, positioned as bridges to care, and tasked with undertaking community work with appropriate patient rations and manageable scope of work.” As the press release states, “This resolution … will serve as a North Star that will guide the movement of global health equity for years to come.” The resolution and information about it are available here <https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-resolution/1373>, here <https://schakowsky.house.gov/media/press-releases/schakowsky-ruiz-lee-in..., and here <https://www.pih.org/paul-farmer-memorial-resolution>.

Item 6:

The Community Health Impact Coalition (CHIC) is recruiting a Research Director<https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fchwimp... to guide research related to the professionalization the CHW workforce globally. This group is doing excellent and important work.

Feel free to share this email with anyone who might have an interest.

Warm regards to all,


Henry B. Perry, MD, PhD, MPH

Senior Associate, Health Systems Program

Department of International Health

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Baltimore, MD, USA 21205

Hperry2@jhu.edu<mailto:Hperry2@jhu.edu>; 443-797-5202

HIFA profile: Henry Perry is a Senior Scientist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA. Professional interests: Community health and primary health care. hperry2 AT jhu.edu

[*Note from NPW, moderator: Thank you Henry, lots of important information here. I especially look forward to see the video by Jon Rohde. I tried to register for the 1-day conference on CHWs on 5th November but I received a message to say "Sales have ended online"? Henry's original message included two attachments that are not carried by HIFA. I redacted a sentence at the top of the message which said "If you would like to be removed from this listserv, kindly let me know..." as I am srue you are referring here to individual recipients on your email distribution list.]