Over the past three decades, children in Latin America have joined a global trend in increasing obesity and overweight levels. Since 1980, the obesity level has tripled in Mexico, and rates are rising in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, and other countries in the region.
The rising rates for obesity and overweight children are alarming, and pose a serious threat to Latin American society. Governments as well as public and private groups are getting involved in the fight against childhood obesity, and it is a top priority for the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF)
An Expanding Pandemic
PAHEF is proud to be a major partner in the Caminata y Paseo Ciclista por la Cura de la Diabetes (Walk and Cycle for a Diabetes Cure) event that will be held on World Diabetes Day in Mexico City. The event will take place November 14th and encourages families, students, professionals, and all members of the general public to get involved to raise funds for a diabetes cure.
The event is expected to attract more than 1,000 participants—all of whom will engage in physical activity to raise awareness of how exercise and education play key roles in combating diabetes. By joining together in solidarity, participants will advance the messages that:
Event Celebrates Victories in Reducing Health Care-Associated Infections and Launch of Infection Control Manual
LA PAZ, BOLIVIA (November 3, 2010) – Today, the significant strides Bolivia has made in reducing health care-associated infections and improving patient safety were celebrated with some of the country’s most prominent health figures in attendance. The event was held at The Ministry of Health & Sports and members of Bolivia’s health community, including Dr. Christian Barres, the Pan American Health Organization/WHO representative, gave speeches to commemorate this achievement as well as to launch the publication of an infection control manual, “Vigilancia, Prevención y Control de Infecciones Asociadas a Servicios de Salud.” Other event attendees included Dr. Nila Heredia, Minister of Health, and the director of INLASA.
WASHINGTON, DC (October 31, 2010) – Today, the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF), announced the launch of its updated Web site at www.pahofoundation.org with content available in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. By offering these additional languages, the foundation will be able to better connect with a broader audience interested in advancing public health in the Americas.
The dramatically redesigned Web site has been specifically developed to allow site users to more quickly find the content that is of interest to them and learn how PAHEF is improving health throughout the region.
In Bolivia, PAHEF has played a critical role in reducing the number of health care-associated infections (HCAIs), which has greatly improved patient safety.
People enter the hospital to get well, not to acquire life-threatening infections. Unfortunately, for many patients throughout the world, including the U.S., that is what happens. The very young, elderly, and infirm, which comprise a large portion of a hospital’s patients, are the people most susceptible to HCAIs.
PAHEF and the Pan American Health Organization Honored Innovative Public Health Figures Who Are Advancing Health in the Americas
WASHINGTON, DC (September 28, 2010) – Innovative public health leaders whose work has improved health in the Americas were honored at the invitation-only Pan American Health Organization/PAHEF Awards for Excellence in Inter-American Public Health Event in Washington, DC, last night. Award winners were recognized before an audience of ambassadors, ministers of health, U.S. government officials, and top-level company executives. The awards are cosponsored by the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF) and the Pan American Health Organization.
PAHEF is a key partner in Teen Pregnancy Prevention Day (Día de la Prevención del Embarazo no Planificado en Adolescentes), which will be celebrated throughout Latin America as well as worldwide on September 26th. The theme of this year’s campaign is “Tu vida, Tu responsabilidad” (Your life, Your responsibility). The campaign will provide a space where young people can express their opinions about their responsibilities in relation to preventing pregnancy and avoiding sexually transmitted diseases.
Statistics in the Region
PUBLIC and PRIVATE LEADERSHIP
Since 1940, PAHO Foundation has allied with local, national, and international corporations and foundations to enrich public health in the Americas. These public/private relationships are important and continue to be nurtured so that both strategic partners’ objectives are met. Often funding partners become engaged early on in a project to clearly understand its objectives or participate in the program design. Several partners may jointly fund a program to provide adequate resources to ensure its successful completion. We continue to develop ways to innovate and better serve the people of the Americas.
Bolivian-made hats protect Bolivia’s children from the sun
More than 5,000 hats that were specially designed and made in Bolivia to protect the country’s children from over-exposure to the sun’s harmful ultra-violet rays were distributed to children in the western municipalities of Mecapaca and Pucarani. (49 words)
The key to students wearing the hats
The protective hats became part of school uniforms, thus ensuring they would be worn.
Spreading the message about the sun’s dangers
Maternity waiting homes to save women’s lives in Guatemala, so that “No woman should die giving birth”
More women die in childbirth in Guatemala than almost any other country in Latin America. Almost every death could have been prevented. Socially determined, the inequalities of who lives or dies are even more apparent in rural areas and for indigenous women, where the death rates are often two to three times higher than for non-indigenous women. (58 words)
Guatemalan women die because of where they live