WHO Collaborating Centres Over 800 institutions… ...in more than 80 countries… ...supporting WHO programmes 8th Meeting of the Global Network of WHO Collaborating Centres for Occupational Health 19-23 October 2009 in WHO Headquarters, Geneva Matias Tuler An early model of collaboration in health • The Second World Health Assembly (1949) laid down the policy (which has been constantly followed since) that WHO should not consider the establishment, under its own auspices, of research institutions. Instead, it was considered that research in the field of health is best advanced by coordinating and making use of existing institutions. This is how the concept of WHO collaborating centre was developed. What are the WHO collaborating centres? • The WHO collaborating centres are (parts of) institutions designated by the Director-General to carry out activities in support of the Organization's programmes. • Most of these institutions are part of a university, research laboratory, scientific academies, MoH, or hospital. • The designation is a time-limited contract between WHO and the designated institution, and it includes concrete deliverables. A few examples Currently there are over 800 WHO collaborating centres in over 80 Member States 1200 1000 800 Number of WHOCC 600 400 200 0 1950 1970 1990 2007 Usual misconceptions about the Collaborating Centres The designation as a WHO collaborating centre is not: -- a certification of excellence, or -- a prize or award. The designation as a WHOCC is a mechanism by which the Director-General of WHO recognizes past collaborative work with WHO and provides a legal framework for future collaborative work with WHO, i.e. the agreed activities of the four-year work plan. The decision for new designations and redesignations is based on technical considerations and made on a need bases. Member States set the WHO agenda WHO Secretariat implements the agenda CCs help WHO Secretariat to implement the agenda Roles and incentives Role: to provide strategic support to WHO to meet two main needs: implementing WHO’s mandated work and programme objectives, and developing and strengthening institutional capacity in countries and regions. For the WHOCCs gain enhanced visibility and recognition by national authorities, calling public attention to the health issues on which they work; obtain improved opportunities to exchange information and develop technical cooperation with other institutions, in particular, at international level, and to mobilize additional and sometimes important resources from funding partners; For WHO gain access to top centres worldwide and their institutional capacity to ensure the scientific validity of global health work. exercise leadership through these global networks in shaping the international health agenda. Designations and redesignations All centres are designated by the Director-General of WHO on recommendation of a WHO programme, after successful completion of several years of collaboration with WHO in carrying out jointly planned activities. The designation is a time limited contractual relation between the institution and WHO. It is originally given for a period of four years, and it is renewable for the same or shorter periods, if warranted by programme requirements and the results of an evaluation. Designation is independent of financial support being given to the institution by WHO. Criteria of the designation high scientific and technical standing of the institution concerned at the national and international levels; prominent place of the institution in the country's health, scientific or educational structures; high quality of its scientific and technical leadership of the staff of the institution; stability in terms of personnel, activity and funding; strong working relationship with other institutions in the country, as well as at the intercountry, regional and global levels; clear ability, capacity and readiness to contribute to WHO programme activities; successful completion of at least two years of collaboration with WHO in carrying out jointly planned activities. Responsibilities of the WHO collaborating centres The following are the responsibilities of the institution when it is designated as a WHO collaborating centre: implementing their agreed plan of work in a timely manner and to the highest possible standards of quality; bringing to the attention of the responsible officer any issue that can delay or compromise the implementation of the workplan; following WHO regulations and policies on interaction with the private sector, ethical reviews and clinical trials, when relevant for their agreed workplans; following the conditions for the use of the WHO name and logo; submitting annual progress reports via eCC when requested on the anniversary of the designation date; discussing with their responsible officer the possibility of a redesignation when the current period of designation is coming to an end. WHO policy about the interaction of WHO collaborating centres and the private sector Institutions proposed for (re)designation as a WHO collaborating centre (or the legal entities of which they form part) should not accept funding from companies with business activities that are incompatible with WHO's work (such as tobacco companies) for any activities that fall within the TORs and/or plan of work. Similarly, institutions should not accept funding from companies that have, or may be perceived as having, a direct commercial interest in the outcome of the centre's activities. For example, funds should not be accepted from a drug manufacturer for an activity relating to the treatment of a disease. Caution should be exercised in accepting financing from companies that have even an indirect interest in the outcome of an activity (e.g. in the case of an activity relating to the epidemiology of a disease, caution should be exercised in accepting funds from a manufacturer of drugs for the disease). New electronic system Since June 2007 WHO has put in place a new electronic system to process the re/designations of the WHO Collaborating Centres. This is mostly an internal system of WHO, however the centres are requested to use the system at two specific occasions: 1) Submission of annual progress reports, once a year at the anniversary of the date of re/designation. 2) Submission of the re/designation form at the occasion of the original designation or redesignation Fore more information, or to answer queries, please contact Ms Claire Duchesne (phone 13820) during this week. Ways of working Historically, the WHOCC worked quite isolated from each other, on one-to-one relationships with WHO. That way of working started to change in the early 90s with WHO coordinating activities involving several centres as well as some centres developing joint activities among themselves. Ways of working: Networks In January 2000 the Executive Board encouraged WHO CCs to develop working relations with other centres by setting up or joining collaborative networks with WHO’s support. Networks As of 2008 several networks of WHOCCs have been established, mostly organized around a common technical area of work. WHO CCs for Occupational Health Global Network of WHO CCs for Nursing & Midwifery Development Global Environment Monitoring System - Food Contamination Monitoring and Assessment Programme (GEMS/Food) Global Network of WHO CCs working on Communicable Diseases WHO CCs for Tobacco Control WHO CCs for HRH WHO CCs for Radiation / REMPAN network WHO CCs for International Classifications WHO CCs for Traditional Medicine WHO CCs for Injuries and Violence Prevention WHO CCs for Health Promotion Networks • Under the general coordination of WHO, each of these networks has developed a different way of working and implementing their agreed work with WHO, as well as getting engaged in other activities beyond the collaboration with WHO. • Whereas in some networks WHO has taken a more active role, in other cases WHO limits its participation to provide the framework for the members of the network to interact. • For instance, the Global Network of WHO CCs for Nursing & Midwifery Development selects one of the CCs of the network on a rotating bases to become the Secretariat of the network for four years and help the WHO Secretariat in supporting and monitoring the implementation of the agreed activities. Benefits & challenges In comparison with the bilateral way of working, the networks of WHOCCs have shown the following benefits: Better alignment with WHO's programmes; Activities with a greater global application and impact; • Coordination of activities requires less time from WHO staff; • New peer-to-peer opportunities for the centres beyond their agreed work with WHO, new synergies. Improved motivation for the centres. • At the same time, the following challenges are often mentioned: • Coordination of networks with a large number of CC is sometimes difficult; Delegation of some coordinating functions to area managers may be beneficial; • Linking the activities of the workplan of a CC with the activities of another CC is not always easy and requires advanced planning; • Sometimes a member of the network may become too powerful in detriment of the others; • Keeping momentum and cohesion is a constant challenge • Unless specifically agreed by WHO, the activities of the network should not go beyond the agreed activities with each of its members. Find the Collaborating Centres! The WHO collaborating centres Database is the official source of information about the WHO collaborating centres worldwide. It can be accessed at: http://www.who.int/whocc/ WHOCC code: SUD-11 The title as a WHOCC The head of the WHOCC Department & institution Email Period of designation TORs Responsible officer Technical counterpart Thank you very much for your attention !