BIREME’s Biennial Work Plan (BWP) is guided by Programs and Budgets aligned to PAHO Strategic Plan, which, in turn, is linked to the WHO General Work Program, the 2030 Sustainable Health Agenda for the Americas, Sustainable Development Goals (Agenda 2030), and the Health Agenda for the Americas. Moreover, the BWP considers the priorities of the Cooperation Strategies of the Countries of the Region and the recommendations of the Center’s Advisory Committee and Scientific Committee. BIREME’s 2018-19 BWP was approved by the Organization’s Executive Management and Director, and will guide the development of the Center’s projects, products and services during this biennium.
The presence of BIREME in the AL&C Region in 2017 was strengthened through technical cooperation actions with the PAHO/WHO Country Offices, as well as attendance at national and regional events, virtual meetings and technical meetings at PAHO/WHO Country Offices. These actions underline the repositioning of BIREME as a PAHO/WHO specialized center in scientific and technical information as a priority of the current leadership and with a view to strengthening its contribution to the information and knowledge management systems of the AL & C countries and through cooperation with other countries in the world.
On the framework of BIREME’s technical cooperation information products and services applied to management, access and use of information and evidence in health are developed, as well as to capacity building in Latin American and Caribbean countries. Throughout 2017 the Center led and took part in numerous capacity building activities for researchers, graduate students, managers and health professionals, both as face-to-face and distance learning. The capacity building activities focused mainly on access and use of health information, as well as scientific communication.
The Information Services offered by BIREME in the Virtual Health Library (VHL) aim to promote the democratization of equitable access to scientific and technical health information and to meet the information needs of health professionals in Latin America and the Caribbean through the efficient use of VHL information sources, development and updating of research resources, training activities and operation of other services. It is important to know the performance indicators of the access to information service, obtained from the access records to the Regional Portal of the VHL and the research service, to constantly improve information products and services according to the users’ needs and preferences.
In the year in which it celebrated its 50th Anniversary, BIREME, as a PAHO/WHO Specialized Center, coordinated and held events that mobilized the celebrations together with supporters and institutional partners, former directors, collaborators and users from all the countries of the Region of America Latin America and the Caribbean. These events, as well as other internal meetings, were attended by the members of PAHO/WHO Executive Management at BIREME throughout the year.
The year 2017 was very busy for the Governance Committees, since they both held their meetings and effectively contributed for strengthening BIREME as a PAHO/WHO Specialized Center. The 6th Session of the Advisory Committee took place on February 2017, and was attended by PAHO/WHO representatives from Brazil and five country members: Argentina, Jamaica, Panama, Peru, and Trinidad and Tobago. The 3rd Session of the Scientific Committee was held in December and had representatives from six countries: Mexico, Jamaica, Cuba, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Brazil. Both meetings were attended by PAHO/WHO Assistant Director, Francisco Becerra.