April 17, 2024

The virtual launch of the Lancet Regional Health Americas Commission on Primary Health Care (PHC) and Resilience in Latin America and the Caribbean, jointly hosted by the World Bank and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), is scheduled for Wednesday, January 31, 2024, from 11:00 to 11:45 Eastern Time. The event will offer simultaneous interpretation in Spanish, English, and Portuguese.

The objective of this meeting is to introduce the Commission’s framework, featuring the commissioners who will collaborate to generate new insights aimed at fortifying PHC and enhancing its role in bolstering the resilience of health systems in LAC. This encompasses addressing challenges arising from public health emergencies, such as pandemic risks, climate change, natural disasters, conflict, violence, demographic transition, and other factors.

Register here



Moderator: Tania Dmytraczenko, Health Program Manager, World Bank

Welcome Remarks
• Juan Pablo Uribe, Global Health Director, World Bank
• Jarbas Barbosa, Director, Pan American Health Organization
• Elisa Pucu, Senior Editor, Lancet Americas

Presentation of the Commission and Commissioners
• Cristian Herrera, Senior Health Specialist, World Bank
• Ernesto Báscolo, Unit Chief, Primary Health Care and Integrated Service Delivery, Pan American Health Organization

• Michelle Bachelet, Former President of Chile and Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Closing Remarks
• James Fitzgerald, Director of the Department of Health Systems and Services, Pan American Health Organization


In Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) there is a great need to better understand how primary health care (PHC) needs to be transformed to contribute to prevent, prepare for, respond, and adapt to public health emergencies. Several risks for public health emergencies are present in the region, such as those posed by climate change, epidemic and pandemic risks, natural disasters, demographic shocks, conflict and violence, and other related factors. All of these are magnified by pre-existing health system weaknesses, tight budgets, public mistrust of institutions, inequalities, and long-standing social and economic hardship.

The new WB-PAHO Lancet Regional Health Americas Commission on PHC and Resilience in LAC seeks to advance knowledge that will inform decision-making for the future development of PHC and resilience within the region. The Commission will aim to:

  • develop a comprehensive policy framework for PHC and resilience;
  • identify pivotal strategies and policies to be developed and define the key investments that LAC countries could pursue;
  • conduct a thorough assessment of the foreseeable consequences of not building such resilience in PHC for LAC countries, encompassing potential effects on population health, social and/or economic outcomes to understand the economic arguments for investment.

This is the first Commission under the Lancet Regional Health Americas umbrella and represents an effort to provide insights that are both relevant to the LAC region and can contribute to global efforts in the field.

More information here.


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