IANPHI 2023 General Assembly Highlights

IANPHI 2023 General Assembly

The IANPHI General Assembly is IANPHI’s governing body and consists of our national members. A meeting of the general assembly was held online on December 7, 2023.

During the meeting, highlights of IANPHI 2023 activities and accomplishments were shared according to their alignment with IANPHI’s 2021-2025 Strategy. Other topics at the meeting included an overview of the association’s financial status, and the results of votes that were conducted online between November 10 and 23, 2023. 

Recognitions of Success 2023

In 2023, 31 projects from 16 countries were submitted to IANPHI’s regional chairs for consideration of recognition of success. Following introductory remarks from IANPHI President Duncan Selbie, results of the annual Recognition of Success initiative were unveiled. IANPHI’s Recognition of Success initiative highlights a selection of outstanding projects led by IANPHI member institutes.

The winners by region are:

In Mozambique, the adoption of Strengthening Laboratory Management Toward Accreditation (SLMTA) by the Ministry of Health resulted in significant achievements, with the Instituto Nacional de Saúde achieving ISO 15189 accreditation for 25 lab tests across six reference labs, reflecting a commitment to ongoing healthcare improvement through quality management systems. 

The Jordan Center for Disease Control is strategically coordinating national committees and technical working groups to enhance preparedness, response, and management of epidemics and public health hazards. These initiatives include committees focused on One Health preparedness, evaluation of National Action Plans on antimicrobial resistance, risk communication and community engagement, interagency coordination for immunization, national laboratory network, and After-Action Review for Foot-and-Mouth Disease outbreaks to strengthen cross-sectoral collaboration, ensure effective response strategies, and safeguard public health.

  • IANPHI Europe Regional Network:Strengthening global genomic surveillance through “The New Variant Assessment Platform” (NVAP), UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA)

NVAP is a global initiative aimed at strengthening genomic surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 and other pathogens with pandemic potential. NVAP collaborates internationally to enhance genomic surveillance capabilities, working with the WHO Pandemic Preparedness Global Platforms team and supporting the development of a Global Genomic Surveillance Strategy. Through partnerships and training initiatives, NVAP assists regions like the Eastern Mediterranean, Southeast Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean in rapidly identifying and responding to emerging pathogen variants, contributing to global pandemic preparedness and health security.

  • IANPHI Latin America and Caribbean Regional Network: Improving the population's healthcare efficiency through generating evidence-based documents, Instituto National de Salud (INS) of El Salvador

El Salvador's National Mental Health Survey (ENSM) is a comprehensive effort involving experts and international collaboration, offering crucial insights into mental health issues across various age groups, including anxiety, depression, and addiction. The survey informs evidence-based policies to address these challenges. Additionally, the country's commitment to generating clinical practice guidelines and conducting studies on COVID-19 vaccine booster doses showcases El Salvador as a regional leader in evidence-based medicine and public health strategies.

Presentation of 2023 IANPHI Highlights  

IANPHI Secretary-General Anne-Catherine Viso, Director of the IANPHI U.S. Office Ellen Whitney, IANPHI Director of Collaborative Surveillance, Workforce and Health Emergencies Sadaf Lynes presented the 2023 IANPHI activities aligned with the IANPHI Strategy 2021-2025 and its five strategic priorities.

1. Strengthen Professional Relationships

Thematic committees on Climate Change and Public Health and Social Inequalities and Public Health were established in prior years. Three additional thematic committees were launched later in 2023: Essential Public Health Functions (EPHFs), Public Health Professional Development (PHPD), and Preparedness, Response, Resilience, and Recovery (PPRR).

The Focal Point Network established in 2022 has 145 members as of November 12. In 2023, the IANPHI Europe Network organized a meeting on April 20-21 hosted by the Instituto Nacional de Saúde Dr. Ricardo Jorge in Lisbon, Portugal. The IANPHI Latin America and Caribbean network organized a meeting on October 16-18 hosted by Instituto Nacional de Salud in El Salvador​.

Nine webinars were organized by IANPHI in 2023.

2. Harness Collective Expertise

IANPHI is committed to continue its work on the implementation of EPHFs to operationalize public health at national level. The objective and scope of the Committee on EPHFs shall thus center on the operationalization of EPHFs for the development and enhancement of national public health institutes. Two sub-committees were established: a sub-committee to update the IANPHI Framework for the Creation and Development of National Public Health Institutes and the sub-committee to develop a Code of Practice for National Public Health Institutes.

IANPHI continued to develop new and strengthen existing partnerships with global and regional actors such as WHO, Africa CDC, ASPHER, APHEA, and ASPPH. In May 2023, IANPHI organized with WHO a consultation workshop on the operationalization of EPHFs and contributes to the WHO Euro Reference Group to support Azerbaijan public health with the support of colleagues from UKHSA.

IANPHI is keen to support the development of training programs to enhance leadership in public health. The IANPHI President was invited to share his experience at the second WHO European Public Health Leadership Course on November 21-22, 2023​, co-developed by the WHO Regional Office for Europe and the University of Bordeaux, specifically its School of Public Health (ISPED) and the graduate program on Digital Public Health (DPH), in collaboration with the Bordeaux Population Health Research Center of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) and the Care and Public Health Research Institute (CAPHRI) of the Maastricht University.​ The US Office presented NPHI strengthening projects implemented with NPHIs and governments in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Jordan, Nigeria, Uganda, Vietnam, and Zambia funded by a cooperative agreement with the U.S. CDC.

3. Engage, Support, and Grow Membership

IANPHI highlighted that since the beginning of the strategy in 2021, IANPHI welcomed 16 new members (two in 2021, five in 20222, and nine in 2023). The possibility of offering interpretation during IANPHI meetings, translation services, and tools was discussed. However, funding constraints have to be considered and may limit the availability of such services.

4. Advocate for NPHIs Globally and at Country Level

IANPHI continued to take part in key international fora to advocate for more robust roles of national public health institutes. In 2023, IANPHI attended sessions of the World Health Summit, side events of the World Health Assembly, G7 and G20 technical meetings, the Gastein Forum at a session organized by GÖG, the Austrian Public Health Institute among others. Communications metrics for IANPHI’s work in 2023 were shared: 16 campaigns were carried out by email, 57 tweets yielded 63,908 impressions, 60 LinkedIn posts garnered 27,290 views, and the IANPHI webpage was viewed 54,314 times by 21,433 users.

5. Build an Agile Association

The association is implementing an investment strategy to support the 2021-2025 strategic plan. The IANPHI Secretariat will make available collaborative space for the thematic committees to be launched in early 2024 for members to have access to meeting documents and helpful resources.

Decisions approved by the General Assembly

Between November 10 and 23, 2023 IANPHI national members were invited to vote online on the decisions of the general assembly. A quorum of one-third of voters was reached and the results of the elections were validated by two members of the executive board, who were not candidate for re-elections this year (Prof. Chene and Prof Donmarco-Rivera).

Accounts 2022, Budgets 2023 and 2024, Discharge of the Board

IANPHI Members approved the final accounts of the association for 2022. An update on the 2023 budget was presented to members and the budget proposal of the association for 2024 was approved by the members.

The members approved the discharge of the executive board.

Dr. Juan Rivera, IANPHI Treasurer explained that the 2024 budget includes higher expenditures than in 2023, with specific increases in the IANPHI implementation of the action plan, IANPHI representation, annual meeting, and tools and services categories. This is partly attributed to using resources from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Public Health Agency of Canada projects. The 2024 budget anticipates slightly higher revenues than in 2023. However, Dr. Juan Rivera emphasized that these funds are linked to specific projects and are expected to be spent by the end of the year. The balance for 2024 is slightly below the updated balance for 2023. Finally, the treasurer underscored careful financial planning, reliance on project-specific funds, and the need for sustainable revenue sources.

IANPHI national members and associated members

The IANPHI General Assembly approved two new national members:

Founded in 2010, the National Institute of Public Health of Djibouti operates under the Ministry of Health and plays a crucial role in monitoring the nation's health, ensuring health security, and conducting research in collaboration with educational institutions. The institute focuses on specialized training in public health, health surveillance, prevention programs, and equitable access to health services. Its core functions include health evaluation, regulation, disaster response, and engagement in public health research, demonstrating a commitment to improving the well-being of Djibouti's population.

Established in 2001, the National Center for Communicable Diseases of Mongolia (Mongolia CDC) operates under the Ministry of Health. As a critical resource for developing health policies and interventions, Mongolia CDC prioritizes evidence-based decision-making, emphasizing science and data over political influence. The institute's multifaceted mandate includes public health surveillance, outbreak investigations, health promotion, and prevention, with a focus on social participation, equitable access to health services, and reducing the impact of disasters on health

The IANPHI General Assembly also approved the applications of seven new associated members:

Founded in 2010, the Health Board of Estonia focuses on promoting public health, overseeing various areas such as infectious disease epidemiology, environmental health, chemical safety, medical devices, healthcare services, and crisis preparedness, working towards creating a healthy living environment for all Estonian people by 2025.

Established in 2015, the Amhara Public Health Institute (APHI) is an autonomous government body. APHI focuses on evaluating health status, conducting public health surveillance, developing prevention programs, promoting health, ensuring equitable access to health services, and contributing to public health research while also actively participating in laboratory work to mitigate the impact of emergencies and disasters on health.

The Ministry of Health and Social Services of Namibia is dedicated to delivering integrated, affordable, and accessible quality healthcare, along with providing responsive social services. Its core functions involve establishing policy and legal frameworks, health and social services planning, promoting public health, developing specialized health services and health centers, and engaging in research, development, epidemiology, bio-safety, and emergency response.

The Central Laboratory for Public Health, established in 1996 and operating under the Ministry of Health, focuses on evaluating and analyzing health status, conducting public health surveillance, and offering information and resources for health promotion.

The Ministry of Health (MoH) in Singapore, established in 1955, operates under the government and manages the public healthcare system. As an innovative and people-centered organization, MoH is dedicated to promoting good health, reducing illness, and ensuring access to high-quality and affordable healthcare for all Singaporeans. The institute seeks Associate membership with a High-Income classification.

Established in 2019 the Abu Dhabi Center for Public Health (ADCPH) operates autonomously under the government, contributing significantly to enhancing health and safety efforts for Abu Dhabi residents. The Center actively engages in emergency response, laboratory work, and strategic planning, adhering to best practices for public health and preventive health.

Established in 1973 as the Department of Health and Medical Services in Dubai (DOHMS) and later renamed the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) in 2007, the authority actively engages in regulatory and enforcement capacities, quality assurance, public health research, laboratory work, and financial support for research, contributing significantly to Dubai's health sector oversight and private sector engagement.

An extraordinary general assembly will be held at the beginning of 2024 to approve changes of certain IANPHI Members’ membership status from associate to national.

IANPHI Partners

The IANPHI General Assembly approved a new partnership with the Global Network for Academic Public Health (GNAPH).

Established in April 2023, GNAPH serves as a platform for global public health leaders to tackle international challenges in academic public health. Its primary purpose is to foster connections among network Members, promoting mutual learning and collaboration among academic public health institutions globally. GNAPH influence extends through regional associations, collectively representing over 450 institutions across more than 100 countries on six continents.

The partnership is focused on the development, dissemination, and implementation of the WHO Workforce Roadmap. However, it envisions a more extensive collaboration in the ongoing effort to enhance the global public health workforce. This broader scope includes advocacy for workforce support, ensuring adequate training, and generating essential data for national public health institutes to facilitate research and guide resource development.

IANPHI Regional Networks Chairs et Vice-Chairs

National members of each IANPHI Regional Network elected the Chair and Vice-Chair of their regional network.

IANPHI Executive Board Members

Five executive board member seats were open for the next three years from January 2024 because of the end of the terms of:

IANPHI member institutes elected four new IANPHI Executive Board who will start their three-year term in January 2024:

IANPHI President Election

Professor Duncan Selbie (IANPHI President, 2021-2023) and Chief Adviser to the Public Health Authority, Saudi Arabia is re-elected for a second term as president of IANPHI  (January 2024 to December 2026).

Relevant presentations and the recording of the meeting are available and can be requested from the secretariat at: secretariat@ianphi.org

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