LOS ANGELES — The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has today welcomed the United States’ announcement of the launch of Americas Health Corps – Fuerza de Salud de las Americas, a joint US/PAHO initiative to train 500,000 public healthCARE workers throughout the region over the next five years.
Americas Health Corps, which forms part of the Action Plan on Health and Resilience in the Americas aims to help the region prevent, prepare for and respond to future pandemic threats and other public health emergencies, while ensuring the equitable delivery of health care services to remote, vulnerable and marginalized communities.
The aim of America Health Corps is to strengthen health systems throughout the region and to prepare for future health emergencies by improving transparency, accountability and regional coordination with governments, the private sector and civil society.
And with a current regional deficit of around 600,000 healthcare workers, primarily in rural and underserved areas, training and equipping health personnel is a key part of this initiative.
“Without healthcare workers, there is no resilient health system, no access to healthcare, nor preparedness for pandemics,” PAHO Director D. Carissa Etienne said.
The new initiative will build on PAHO programs of work and mandates to build resilient health systems based on primary health care, strengthen essential public health functions and improve pandemic preparedness and response in the Americas.
It will leverage the capacity of the PAHO Virtual Campus to reach healthcare workers throughout the region, including in remote and underserved areas.
“The pandemic has laid bare the fact that we can no longer ignore long-standing deficiencies in our health systems,” PAHO Director of the Health systems and Services Department Dr James Fitzgerald said.
“We welcome this opportunity to work together with the United States to equip the next generation of the health workforce in the Americas.