Issue No. 05 [2011]
PAHO, Catalyst for Health in the Americas. Health: Our Most Basic Asset.
March 25, 2011
PAHO: Strengthening Strategies and Actions to reduce in a fifth Cardiovascular Diseases in the Americas
OPS: Fortaleciendo Estrategias y Acciones para reducir en una quinta parte las Enfermedades Cardiovasculares en las Américas
Cardiovascular disease is a major cause of disability and premature death throughout the world, and contributes substantially to the escalating costs of health care. The underlying pathology is atherosclerosis, which develops over many years and is usually advanced by the time symptoms occur, generally in middle age. Acute coronary and cerebrovascular events frequently occur suddenly, and are often fatal before medical care can be given. Modifi cation of risk factors has been shown to reduce mortality and morbidity in people with diagnosed or undiagnosed cardiovascular disease.
[WHO. Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease]

Cardiovascular diseases
Enfermedades Cardiovasculares

*Mirta Roses Periago
Organización Panamericana de la Salud (OPS)

Artículo publicado en varios medios de comunicación de la Región.
[25 Marzo 2011]

Las enfermedades cardiovasculares se han convertido en la primera causa de mortalidad en las América, causando más de un millón de fallecimientos al año, y la situación se agravará conforme la población envejece.

La OPS trabaja en un Plan de Acción Regional para la Prevención y Control de las Enfermedades Cardiovasculares 2011-2020 para mejorar la salud cardiovascular en las Américas.

Las enfermedades cardiovasculares pueden ser prevenidas con una dieta sana, mantenerse físicamente activos, no fumar y tener chequeos médicos periódicos, a lo largo de la vida.

"La alta frecuencia de hipertensión arterial, elevado colesterol, diabetes y obesidad han llevado a las enfermedades cardiovasculares al primer lugar como causa de muerte, y se relacionan con el envejecimiento de la población y la adopción de patrones de comportamiento nocivos, como el consumo de tabaco, la dieta inadecuada y el sedentarismo."

- Artículo: Enfermedades Cardiovasculares »

Mas información:

- Hojas informativas sobre las enfermedades cardiovasculares en la Región
- Enfermedades Cardiovasculares, sitio Web de la OPS

WHO Senior Policy-Makers Meet to Discuss Policy, Management and Strategy Issues
Grupo de Política Global de la OMS se reúne para analizar importantes temas de política, estrategia y administración

World Health Organization:
protecting the global population in critical health matters


WHO Director-General and the six WHO Regional Directors are meeting in Geneva during their annual 3 days Global Policy Group Retreat to review and discuss about WHO main policy and strategic issues to improve and strengthen the performance of the World Health Organization.

Geneva. WHO GPG Retreat. 24 March 2011.
(Photo © PAHO/WHO - Office of the Director)

Geneva. Switzerland.
22-24 March 2011.

The WHO Global Policy Group composed by the WHO Director-General, the Regional Directors from the six WHO Regions (AFRO, AMRO, EMRO, EURO, SEARO, WPRO), the WHO Deputy-Director-General and the Adviser of the WHO-DG are participating this week in the annual WHO-GPG Retreat, which is an opportunity for the leaders of the World Health Organization to gather together to review closely the Organization performance. They look at the latest relevant events that have required the attention of WHO in its mission to protect the global population in critical health matters and coordinating the global response to the major challenges in public health.

Reflections on WHO ways of working, WHO management strategy and WHO perspectives, roles and positions in the main policy issues are important topics to be discuss.

During the WHO-GPG meeting, the elected officers of the Organization gather to exchange experiences and discuss the WHO Priorities for 2011 with special emphasis among others in Managerial Response to the Financial Crisis; Governance of Global Health; WHO Roles; Results-based management and accountability framework; and Human Resources.


  • WHO Director-General, Dr Margaret Chan;
  • WHO Deputy Director-General, Dr Anarfi Assamoa-Baah;

Regional Directors

  • Dr Luis G. Sambo, RD/AFRO;
  • Dr Mirta Roses Periago, RD/AMRO;
  • Dr Hussein A. Gezairy, RD/EMRO;
  • Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, RD/EURO;
  • Dr Samlee Plianbangchang, RD/SEARO;
  • Dr Shin Young-Soon, RD/WPRO.;


  • Dr Ian Smith, DG Adviser

The Global Policy Group, as reported by the Director-General is committed to " … developing and modeling a corporate organizational culture … "

WHO and the European Commission meet to agree future common action in key areas
OMS y la Comisión Europea se reúnen para acordar acción común futura en áreas claves

Senior officials and technical experts from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Commission met in Brussels on 24 and 25 March 2011 to outline and agree how the two partnering organizations will work more closely together in priority areas of shared interests.

Brussels, 25 March 2011 (WHO)

Dr Chan, Director-General of WHO opened the meeting, who was accompanied by Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe, Dr Luis Sambo, WHO Regional Director for Africa and Dr Mirta Roses Periago, Director of the Pan-American Health Organization, together with senior officials from other WHO regions. They were joined by officials and technical experts from WHO and the EC.

The meeting focused on innovation and research in health, health security, public health information systems, health systems and investing in health, health inequalities and cooperation in countries.

The senior officials also discussed other topics such as the Lisbon treaty, reform of WHO, humanitarian aid and health aspects of the northern Africa crisis and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

The discussions around the six core areas will incorporate global as well as European and country-specific dimensions, and will identify how both organizations can be mutually supportive and work more coherently.

The senior officials of the two organizations agreed on strategic cooperation on health security, health innovation, health systems, health information, health inequalities and country collaboration. This cooperation may take diverse forms – from exchange of information and views to joint advocacy work and implementation of activities. The senior officials also discussed other topics such as the Lisbon treaty, the reform of WHO, humanitarian aid and health aspects of the northern Africa crisis and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The discussions around the six core areas incorporated global as well as European and country-specific dimensions, and identified how both organizations can be mutually supportive and work more coherently.

An administrative agreement between the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and WHO/Europe was also signed in Brussels, and the EC and WHO finalized road maps for implementing the commitments they had made in a joint declaration, “A shared vision for joint action”, that was signed at the WHO Regional Committee for Europe’s session in Moscow in September 2010.

Read more:
- WHO Regional Office for Europe - News Release »

Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020

Década de acción para la seguridad vial 2011-2020

PAHO/WHO hosted a global meeting for Road Safety Advocacy Strategy

Washington DC. PAHO HQ.
14 March 2011.

A Decade focusing to achieve the goal of saving millions of lives in the years ahead.

Dr. Mirta Roses, PAHO Director welcomed the representatives gathered at PAHO from 80 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) from over 50 countries, highlighting the tremendous respect and sympathy for those who took their personal tragedies and turned them into such positive contributions to their communities and societies for the benefit of all of us. Dr Roses underlined that this global meeting is timely, as it will allow organizing the NGOs as a community in advance of the launch of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 on 11 May 2011.

"Road safety is a crucial issue, and besides our best efforts, deserves our absolute attention" - Dr Roses added. "It is a health and development concern which touches all of us in some way. We can all contribute in meaningful ways to preventing deaths and injuries on our roads".

"Governments may take the lead in developing prevention policies and programmes and other responses, and NGOs have a vital role to play. NGOs have been active on many fronts, ranging from supporting victims of road traffic crashes to organizing street demonstrations and other public events, and to reaching out to young people in bars and nightclubs to warn them of the dangers of drinking and driving."

PAHO Director spotlighted that advocacy efforts are the most important role NGOs may have. "The advocacy efforts in which NGOs excel can ultimately increase attention to road safety generally; garner the necessary political will to spur action; and generate a demand for road safety from the public."

In the Americas we are contributing to preparations for ceremonies in countries across the Region: from Argentina and Venezuela to Ecuador and Brazil. In Peru an important sub-regional ministerial summit took place. In Mexico another important regional summit will occur in the days following the global launch, and this will give us yet another opportunity to reinforce a renewed impetus in favour of road safety across the Region.

- PAHO Director Opening Remarks

The Second Global Meeting of Nongovernmental Organizations Advocating for Road Safety and Road Victims met at the headquarters of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) for a global meeting organized by the World Health Organization (WHO). NGOs exchanged knowledge on how to advocate for safer roads and take steps toward creating a global alliance to support the launch and implementation of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. The decade of action provides a framework for countries to improve road safety and save millions of lives over the next 10 years. It will be launched globally on 11 May 2011.

The Second Global Meeting of Nongovernmental Organizations Advocating for Road Safety and Road Victims spotlighted initiatives from NGOs from the United Kingdom, Egypt, Tanzania, the United States, and Mexico, among others.

More information:



Transforming data into evidence and intelligence to support decision-making to improve population health

Seattle, Washington.
18 March 2011.

The Pan American Health Organization
Public Health Information Platform (PAHO-PHIP):
an organization-wide data warehouse and health intelligence platform to support health analysis and decision-making

PAHO-PHIP one of the effective and relevant tools presented at the Global Health Metrics and Evaluation (GHME) Conference 2011: "Controversies, Innovation, Accountability" at Seattle, Washington.

PAHO-PHIP is an innovative solution for integrating health data across the Organization, facilitating health analysis and generation of relevant results and the evidence needed for steering the technical cooperation, support decision-making, monitoring progress of key health indicators, assess the health situation and trend and predict public health issues.

PHIP is and example of the potential of internet-based technologies for sharing public health data and information, and fast generation and dissemination of empirical evidence for decision-making in public health.

Current challenges in global, regional, national and local public health, the global economic situation and the increasing demands for accountability, requires intensified efforts to implement innovative tools, methods and evidence to support decision-making in health. The capacity of sharing sound health data, information, evidence and knowledge ensure that our Organization will be among the global leaders in public health. Provide valid, reliable and comparable health measurements for comprehensive analysis and public health policy implementation to Member States, public professionals and workers and the who society is a mandate for the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), and PHIP and the Regional Health Observatroy are two of the tools that PAHO uses to accomplish this mandate.

PAHO Health Information Platform (PHIP) integrates data from the PAHO Core Health Indicator initiative, the Regional Mortality database and data from health areas and programs across the Organization. PAHO cross-organizational team of public health analysts is devoted to health intelligence, production of analytical results and support fact-based and informed recommendations to overcome health problems. The Regional Health Observatory (PAHO-RHO) Open Portal is the gateway to access data, information, reports, publications and all the content produced by the Organization to support decision-making for the Americas' region.

World Water Day

Día Mundial del Agua 2011

Washington DC. PAHO HQ.
22 March 2011.

- On World Water Day, PAHO Urges Greater Attention to Urban Water Management [PAHO Press Release]

Access to Water and Sanitation
Can Reduce Disease by 80 Percent

"In Latin America and the Caribbean, some 105 million people have no access to basic sanitation, and the majority of these people are women, indigenous people or older adults living in rural areas or on the outskirts of major cities,"

On the occasion of World Water Day, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) called on governments, organizations, communities and individuals to focus greater attention on urban water management, and especially on the impact of urban population growth, industrial growth, national disasters and instabilities related to climate change on urban water systems.

- Día Mundial del Agua: OPS hace un llamado a poner atención sobre la gestión urbana del agua
[OPS Noticias]

Article: Water and Sanitation for All
"Focusing our attention on water and sanitation issues has been and will continue to be a crucial part of PAHO’s work in the Region, especially as infectious diseases like cholera reemerge and climate change limits already scarce water resources. Water and sanitation issues most adversely affect the poorest and most vulnerable populations, including women and minorities, and PAHO’s commitment to equitable health is underlined in our fight for clean water and improved sanitation for all."

* PAHO Director
XXXII Congress of the Inter-American Association of Sanitary and Environmental Engineering (AIDIS)
Dominican Republic. November 5th-10th, 2010.

- Water and Sanitation for All: Renewing PAHO’s commitments


World TB Day

Día Mundial de la Tuberculosis 2011

- PAHO. World TB Day: Time to Hasten Efforts to Move From Control to Elimination
- WHO. Increased commitment needed to tackle multidrug-resistant TB

On World TB Day, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) called on country authorities, technical and financial partners, community organizations and all people to redouble efforts in the fight against tuberculosis, to advance towards the eradication of the disease.

- OPS. Día Mundial de la Tuberculosis: Innovar y acelerar esfuerzos para avanzar desde el control hacia la eliminación de la enfermedad
- OMS. Un mayor compromiso para afrontar la tuberculosis multirresistente

Washington DC. PAHO HQ.
24 Marzo 2011.

En el Día Mundial de la Tuberculosis, la Organización Panamericana de la Salud/Organización Mundial de la Salud (OPS/OMS) hizo un llamado a las autoridades de los países, a los socios técnicos y financieros, a las organizaciones comunitarias y a todas las personas a redoblar esfuerzos en la lucha contra la tuberculosis para avanzar hacia la eliminación de esta enfermedad.

Al menos 40 millones de personas podrían enfermar y 8 millones podrían morir por tuberculosis en el mundo entre 2011 y 2015, de acuerdo a estimaciones de la OMS. En 2009 se reportaron, a nivel mundial, unos 9,4 millones de casos nuevos y 1,7 millones de fallecidos por tuberculosis. De estas cifras, 270 mil casos nuevos y entre 20 y 24 mil muertes ocurrieron en las Américas ese año, según el Informe Mundial sobre Control de la Tuberculosis de la OMS.

Este es el segundo año que se lleva adelante la campaña “Innovemos y aceleremos esfuerzos contra la tuberculosis”, con el objetivo de inspirar a que se innove tanto en la atención como en el diagnóstico y tratamiento de esta enfermedad. La campaña se enmarca en los objetivos del Plan Mundial Alto a las Tuberculosis 2011-2015: Del Control a la Eliminación, lanzada por la Alianza “Alto a la Tuberculosis” en octubre de 2010.

Más información:

- Día de Tuberculosis de 2011 (OPS)
- Programa de Tuberculosis (OPS)
- Tuberculosis en las Américas (2009)
- Reporte Global de la Tuberculosis (2010) [en inglés]

"El Plan Regional de Control de la Tuberculosis 2006–2015, tiene la visión de construir una América libre de Tuberculosis para el 2050, asegurando que cada paciente con tuberculosis tenga pleno acceso al diagnóstico y tratamiento de calidad, para disminuir la carga social, económica y de inequidad que impone la TB ...

Las líneas estratégicas de trabajo están acordes con la nueva estrategia de la OMS "Alto a la Tuberculosis", las acciones a desarrollar están detalladas y los recursos necesarios han sido estimados. Resta demostrar nuestra firmeza y habilidad para involucrar a otros actores sociales, lograr los compromisos políticos y obtener los recursos financieros para su ejecución."

* Directora de la OPS
OPS. Plan Regional de Tuberculosis, 2006–2015


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