REPORT ON VIRTUAL MEETINGS ,NOVEMBER 2-4 ,2020
STAGE – Background
STAGE (STRATEGIC AND TECHNICAL ADVISORY GROUP OF EXPERTS ) on maternal, newborn, child, adolescent health, and nutrition (MNCAHN) is a global independent advisory group that was established by the Director General Tedros Ghebreyesus , WHO in March 2020. There are 31 members – Chairperson is Prof Caroline Homer from Australia.
The core function of STAGE is to provide strategic and technical advice to WHO and to inform the WHO agendas for primary health care and universal health coverage, with a focus on maximizing country impact and coordinated global leadership in the field of maternal new born child adolescent health and nutrition.
The mandate of STAGE is to provide recommendations on matters related to maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health and nutrition.
PARTNERS’ FORUM AND WORKING GROUPS
The objective of the Partners Forum was to update partners on the work of STAGE and to provide partners with an opportunity to give input to STAGE deliberations . There are 19 Partners from Government and respected global organisations including the Rotary International and 4 UN agencies
Three working groups were set up at their meeting in April/May 2020 with objectives as follows :
Working Group 1 (WG1): WG 1 will use the lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic to develop recommendations to improve the resilience of health systems to external shocks for the provision of MNCAHN services.
Working Group 2 (WG2): WG 2 will develop recommendations and suggestions on how to improve and speed up the translation and impact of the technical guidance produced by WHO at country and regional levels.
Working Group 3 (WG3): WG3 will provide strategic recommendations to accelerate the inclusion of broader health, development, and well-being considerations (Thrive Agenda) to the ongoing maternal and child health (0-19 years) and survival efforts (Survive Agenda)
VIRTUAL MEETINGS,NOVEMBER 2-4 ,2020
The first cache of technical meetings of STAGE was on November 2-4, 2020.
Working groups presented their preliminary recommendations to the STAGE for deliberations and the final recommendations from STAGE will be presented to the Director General, WHO for approval and further dissemination.
WG 1 – The COVID -19 pandemic has shown that although health systems struggled, they remained nimble and agile and adapted quickly to crisis. The global health community needs to learn from the unprecedented situation not just to better prepare for the next pandemic, but also to transform the way we deliver health services in the future—to make them more data-led, more equitable, and more effective
WG 2 – This was an interesting meeting pointing towards the need for establishing Technical Advisory Groups(TAGs) at national ,subnational and regional levels. Recommendation was made for coordination of guidelines, integration into existing health ministry framework, more use of digital Apps and other media, monitoring gaps of knowledge translation and action (know-do gap) at national ,subnational levels. Also sharing of what works and what does not .
WG 3 – This working group ,based on a priority setting exercise, identified nutrition through life course and missing middle (5-9 years) and early adolescent health as two topics that significantly influence human capital and could influence the WHO Child Health Redesign process.
Metabolically obese normal weight (MONW),measuring anaemia ,gaps in maternal nutrition ,issues with supplementation led to recognition of these problems ,vigorous discussion on relevant short term and long-term measures ,and implementational research .
And Finally ……………….
The meetings with experts were excellent , I could interact ,ask questions and importantly made some new contacts. We could consider lessons learnt and how we can implement changes and assist Clubs and Districts in planning and implementing high impact grants. I look forward to our next meeting in April, 2021
I am grateful to Dr. Anshu Banerjee , Director of WHO , MNCAHA for the kind invitation
Himansu Basu November,10,2020