Training Program on Surveillance and Prevention of Birth Defects and Preterm Birth
Deadline for application submissions - 30 May 2012
Why this Program?
Birth defects and preterm birth are quickly becoming leading causes of childhood death, chronic illness, and disability in many countries, including developing countries. In an effort to address the emerging importance of birth defects, the WHO Assembly on May 21, 2010 adopted a resolution calling all Member States to promote primary prevention and the health of children with birth defects by developing and strengthening registration and surveillance systems, developing expertise and building technical capacity, and promoting international cooperation (p.32-34, Resolution WHA63.17).
What is the Program?
An overarching, practical goal of the 2012 training program is to provide participants with the knowledge and skills to begin or strengthen a surveillance mechanism for the monitoring of select, largely preventable birth defects. This training program blends knowledge and practice in a skill-based workshop, to help countries move toward meeting the goals of the resolution. Through focused lectures (about 1/3 of the time) and practical small group sessions (2/3 of the time), participants will:
- understand principles and practice of surveillance, including planning, implementation, and evaluation
- understand the health impact and effective prevention strategies for common modifiable risk factors
- practice specific skills, including how to develop a logic model, code and classify cases, enter and analyze data, and communicate effectively with professionals, the public, and policy makers about the importance of surveillance to support prevention efforts.
The program is intensive and demanding, and includes required pre-course activities. The program schedule will include time for one-on-one interactions with faculty, and faculty will be available for post-course interactions as participants return to their countries to begin or strengthen local surveillance and prevention activities.
How are participants chosen?
Due to high demand and to allow extensive interaction and practice, openings in 2012 are limited. Preference will be given to professionals who are:
- from low and middle resource countries
- directly involved in the development and/or enhancement of surveillance and prevention programs in their countries (participants are encouraged to bring data and be able to address issues relevant to their countries)
- nominated or sponsored by country or local health authorities (preferable)
- strongly committed to long term surveillance programs
Note: Small teams from individual countries are encouraged to apply, particularly if these combine multiple disciplines and skill sets (e.g., medical professional with epidemiologist or analyst).
Who is the faculty?
Faculty includes distinguished medical and public health professionals with decades of practical experience, from leading global public health organizations and academic centers.
What is the cost?
The registration fee is USD 500, and includes training materials and certificate of completion. Participants from lower resource countries may request a payment exemption.