CHD Group – a global public health organization holding UNECOSOC Special Consultative Status celebrated the 8th Foundation Day at Mangalore on 27th June, 2022. The Chief Guest for the day was His Excellency Mr. Federico Salas Lotfe, Ambassador of Mexico to India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal and Maldives.
The guest of honor was Dr. Harsha Somaroo, President, Public Health Association of South Africa who also is a Medical Specialist at the University of Witwatersrand School of Public Health & Technical Advisor, Gauteng Province, Dept of Health, South Africa.
The 8th foundation day theme was on inclusion of “public health in all policies for community development” to reimagine a post COVID-19 pandemic world and how different sectors must embed an approach that mainstream health in all policies and across line ministries.
There was a detailed panel discussion moderated by His Excellency Ambassador Salas and Dr. Somaroo at the foundation day roundtable with distinguished guests cutting across different sectors. Panelists for the evening were Dr. Senorita Issac, Chairperson, Human Achievers Foundation, Dr. Rudolph Noronha, GM – ONGC-MRPL, Dr. Kumar, IAS – CEO, Zilla Panchayat, Dr. Ramdas Pai, Former WHO Consultant.
Dr. Edmond Fernandes, Founder and CEO, CHD Group welcomed the guests for the evening and spoke about CHD Group’s journey through 8 years and discussed the future plans across India and around the world and how global health policies must be mainstreamed with health at the center of discussion worldwide.
H.E. Ambassador Salas in his inaugural address discussed the various consequences of the pandemic in the diplomatic sector, the fragility of the health care system, and the underemphasis and restricted access of marginal groups in health care. He also reiterated the importance of a social protection system that must be holistically developed to be better equipped to face future health challenges and crises. He highlighted the need for WHO to reform from its previous self and be better prepared.
Dr. Harsha Somaroo, stressed the importance on how intersectoral sectors need to effectively collaborate and bridge the policy gaps across various determinants of health and reform health and non-health actors. She was very strongly in favour of mainstreaming health in all policies as a guiding principle for times ahead around the world.
Among the elite panellists, Dr. Kumar, IAS pointed out the various challenges faced in India during the pandemic, and how agriculture, educational sectors were affected besides the impact on migrant workers. The issue of reverse migration was spoken about and also the manner in which various government schemes can be popularized was highlighted. He also highlighted how Pustaka Gudu (book nest) as a concept he started gathered rising popularity around the villages can be further scaled.
Dr. Ramdas Pai, spoke on the role of social accountability of medical colleges towards community care and the responsibility medical colleges had to take care of the community. He also floated concepts to explore new paths in guideline creations for future risks.
Dr. Rudolph Noronha, General Manager, ONGC-MRPL provided his experience on how the industry responded to COVID-19, provided employee care and also recovered from the challenges faced.
Dr. Senorita Issac, spoke on the mental health impact of the pandemic and the importance of self care in a post pandemic world. Dr. Neevan Dsouza, Governing Board Member, CHD Group delivered the Vote of Thanks. Prof. Shalini Aiyappa, Chair, Governing Council, Edward & Cynthia Institute of Public Health was the Master of Ceremony, and rapporteur for the day was Sarosha Pais.