Gustavo Mendelsohn de Carvalho (AFN)
The Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz) was chosen to preside the Latin American Alliance for Global Health (Alasag) at the 6th Latin American and Caribbean Global Health Congress, which took place online on October 28th and 29th. Fiocruz was the host of the meeting, whose central theme this year was Sustainable Development and Global Health: The Challenges of Inequality in the Region, and was attended by about 650 enrolled participants from more than 25 countries of the region and the rest of the world.
Alasag is an association of institutions that act on an international level to boost the global approach of health in education, investigation, and technical cooperation in the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. In Brazil, in addition to Fiocruz, the University of the State of Rio de Janeiro (UERJ) and the University of São Paulo (USP) are also part of the Alliance, which also boasts representatives from Chile, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Peru and Nicaragua.
The event discussed different dimensions of the Covid-19 pandemic in the region; this was also the main theme of the Final declaration of the meeting. The document emphasizes that 25% of positive cases and 34% of deaths worldwide were recorded in Latin America. “Populations in poverty and extreme poverty, as well as indigenous, African descendants, women, children, and senior populations, those without a job, and migrants are some of the most hardly hit and the ones that suffer the most with the consequences of the pandemic in the region”, state the signatories.
The participants of the 6th Congress demand responses from the governments, with the formulation of concrete policies and actions to reduce inequalities and guarantee access to high-quality health and education. The Declaration concludes with a call to all those involved, to “work in a collaborative way to deal with and mitigate the pandemic, guided by the commitment to leave to future generations a healthier world that is less unequal and less unfair”.