A new Latin American training project to strengthen research for health systems began mid-July 2011 in Antigua, Guatemala, jointly designed and run by RIMAIS, ISCIII and COHRED and the Spanish International Cooperation and Development Agency (AECID).
The Ibero American Ministerial Network on Learning and Health Research (RIMAIS) is an initiative proposed by former Minister of Health of Costa Rica, Dr Rocío Sáenz. The Network has 18 countries registered, and each has a representative. COHRED has been supporting RIMAIS in various ways, and is a member of the RIMAIS Advisory Board, along with the Carlos III Health Institute (ISCIII, Spain), and the Public Health School of Andalucía (Spain).
After analysing the needs the network has, a joint proposal to run a series of training courses was prepared by RIMAIS, ISCIII and COHRED and presented to the Spanish International Cooperation and Development Agency (AECID). The proposal was awarded a €100,000 grant to support network meetings, and a series of training courses to strengthen research for health managers in the Latin American region.
The project started mid-July 2011 at the AECID-Training Centre in Antigua, Guatemala, with the participation of 13 RIMAIS representatives, Secretariat members and speakers. The meeting was divided into two parts: the first was devoted to RIMAIS business, and the second marked the beginning of the training phase of the project.
COHRED is in charge of the training phase that will consist of two stages, the course in Antigua and online training activities. In the introductory course given last week, general concepts on research for heath system, its functions and structure, were discussed, along with a workshop to learn tools for mapping and establishing an inventory of resources within research for health systems. Financing and the pros and cons of various models were discussed as part of the workshop.
The training phase will be delivered using web-based platforms. For this stage, COHRED is partnering with the National Institute of Public Health in Mexico (INSP) which has experience in web-based training. Network members will have access to INSP web-based platforms for three 30-hour courses to be delivered within the next 16 months. COHRED will lead this effort and professors will come from INSP and partner institutions both in Latin America and Spain. Each RIMAIS country member will be able to join with two participants, thus expanding the knowledge base of research for health managers and their staff. INSP will provide academic certificates for those who attend and fulfil the courses requisites.
This project will bring a new perspective to The COHRED Group’s activities both in the region and globally, as we will use staff expertise and knowledge on research for health systems development and strengthening, partnering with experts for other related topics where their support is needed. Using The COHRED Group’s extensive international collaboration and networking capabilities, this experience will allow COHRED to analyse a new path of work that could compensate the capacity building needs for research for health managers. With this experience, we can now focus on those who manage the system, in addition to focusing on the system itself.