Global Health Histories

Lunchtime seminars series 2014

In 2014 the focus of the popular annual seminar series turns to the history of universal health coverage. People from all over the world will be able to register to listen and discuss the issues under consideration live over the internet.

All seminars are held in the WHO library from 12:30 – 14:00 CET and are also broadcast via webinar. To register for a webinar, please contact:

Seminar 75: The Origins of Primary Health Care – 26 February

2014’s series commences with a seminar featuring Professor Marcos Cueto (Fiocruz, Brazil) and Dr. Socrates Litsios (WHO), who will speak about the origins of the WHO’s primary health care programme. This seminar will also mark a significant milestone – the 75th GHH seminar.

Seminar 76: Sri Lanka – An Example of Model Healthcare – 12 March

Dr Margaret Jones (University of York) analyses the Sri Lankan experience of primary health care from the late colonial period to the Alma–Ata declaration. Dr Susie Perera (Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka) discuss the Sri Lankan Ministry of Health’s investigation of how the existing primary health can be reformed to provide universal health access and maintain a safety net for healthcare.

Seminar 77: Mexico: Uneven development and Primary Health Care – 23 April

Dr. Gabriella Soto Laveaga's (University of California) presentation examines the social origins of the rural health care pro-gram, its immediate challenges and surprising successes, and its untimely demise linked to 1980s global economic reforms. Dr. Amalia Del Riego (WHO) will discuss the issue with reference to the Region of the Americas, highlighting recent efforts for health systems transformation to expand coverage of ser-vices and improve health systems performance, based on the renewed commitment to Primary Health Care.

Seminar 79: Nepal: Primary Health Care, Universal Health Coverage and Foreign Aid – 21 May

Dr. Susan Heydon's (University of Otago) presentation will analyse a rural health aid project’s experiences of nearly 50 years and consider why health programmes may not be as successful as planned. Dr Phyllida Travis’s (WHO) presentation will reflect on current trends and challenges in effective development cooperation in health in Nepal.

Seminar 80: South Africa: Primary Health Care as a Harbinger of Democracy – 25 June

Dr. Vanessa Noble’s (University of KwaZulu-Natal) presentation examines the attempts to train medical students in PHC. When these institutional efforts failed, the quest for PHC became largely associated with anti-apartheid “struggle” activists who worked to provide more equitable and accessible health care services for South Africa. Joseph Kutzin (WHO) discuss the issue from the WHO perspective.

Upcoming seminars

Seminar 81: Global Public Health, Social Media and Research: Opportunities and Ethical Challenges - 18 September

We can now find, discuss and even review diagnoses, symptoms and treatments almost instantly. Dr Dan O’Connor (Wellcome Trust) will explore the ethical challenges that this transformation raises for health research. Drawing on the discussions within WHO’s Research Ethics Review Committee, Dr Abha Saxena (WHO) will talk about the opportunities and challenges of using these new tools in the field of health research.

Seminar 82: The UK, NHS and Universal Health Coverage – 22 October

Dr. Andrew Hull (Swansea University)

Seminar 83: Civil registration: The anchor for Universal Health Coverage? – 19 November

Professor Simon Szreter (University of Cambridge)

Seminar 84: Anti Microbial Resistance – 3 December

Dr Jeremy Farrar (Wellcome Trust, UK)