Letter from the President

IANPHI President Pekka Puska

February 2016

Esteemed Members of IANPHI,

As you may know, during the General Assembly that took place at the Annual Meeting in Paris, I was honored with the nomination and election as IANPHI President from 2016 – 2018, thus following the dynamic leadership of our much respected and valued President, Pekka Puska. 

Pekka Puska has diligently served IANPHI as the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) Director member, founding Vice President of IANPHI from 2006 – 2011, and as IANPHI President from 2013 – 2015. His contributions to our Association have been outstanding and have helped to shape IANPHI into the 100-member strong global health network that it is today. We owe him a profound appreciation for everything he has accomplished, and I look forward to the next three years of successful and enriching collaboration with Pekka in his role as the next Immediate-Past President of IANPHI.  

I would also like to congratulate Mwele Malecela for her re-election as Vice President of IANPHI. Her support and participation in the Association have been a tremendous help in fostering IANPHI–African alliances and integration. We are excited to continue collaborating with her and counting on her support for another three years.

As the President of IANPHI, I would like to express my sincerest appreciation for the support I have received from members who cast their vote of confidence in me to lead our Association for the next three years. I recognize that there is much to be done to prepare for the upcoming years, but I look forward to the challenge of strengthening the value associated with being a member of IANPHI, and I will work closely with our colleagues from the U.S. and French Secretariat offices to do so. Given the unforeseen change of the Presidential office, some of the activities corresponding to the Secretary General’s Office will now be managed from the InVS Secretariat Office in France, while other core activities will remain at the INSP in Mexico during 2016. The next EB meeting will define the procedures regarding the Secretariat.

On the threshold of IANPHI’s 10th Anniversary, 2016 marks the beginning of many new projects and collaborations including the signing of MoUs with Public Health England, the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH) of the United States, and the WHO, which will open the door to new opportunities for research and academic exchange between IANPHI members and these prestigious organizations. 

We are proud to announce that the U.S. office has obtained funding from the Gates Foundation for the Child Health and Mortality Prevention Surveillance (CHAMPS) program that will focus on collecting and disseminating timely data from a network of field sites in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, thus providing an unprecedented understanding of how, where and why children are becoming ill. Please feel free to visit the IANPHI CHAMPS site online for more detailed information.

IANPHI’s NPHI capacity building projects are ongoing with more than 30 of our member Institutes, and we continue with our policy work, which includes contributions to the literature on public health systems strengthening, and the development of practical tools that can be used by countries to assess their current capacity and chart a course for building long-term capacity. Likewise, our peer-assistance approach to facilitate the sharing of expertise and experience among member NPHIs continues to grow each year. 

We will continue to organize peer-to-peer assistance and established joint projects for IANPHI members, such as the peer-to-peer evaluation tool, designed to demonstrate the contribution of NPHIs in their national specific context, and draw recommendations that could provide orientations to improve both the quality of services and impact on public health. We will also continue to reach out to our members and partners to offer our services as the unique global health network that we have become.

Once again, I thank you all for your support, and look forward to working with you as we grow in worldwide recognition within the international arena of public health.  

My very best wishes for a prosperous new year!

Mauricio Hernandez-Avila

President, IANPHI 

Director General, INSP Mexico