Colombia’s Minister of Health, Fernando Ruiz, among the candidates to lead the Pan American Health Organization

In the image, the Minister of Health of Colombia, Fernando Ruiz. Photo: REUTERS/Luis Jaime Acosta

The Executive Committee of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) published the list of six candidates from Latin America to lead the organization for the next five years. Among them was the current Colombian Minister of Health, Fernando Ruiz.

The list includes doctors Camilo Alleyne (submitted by Panama); Jarbas Barbosa Da Silva Jr. (submitted by Brazil), Florence Duperval-Guillaume (submitted by Haiti); Nadine Flora Gasman Zylbermann (submitted by Mexico); Daniel Salinas (presented by Uruguay) and Minister Ruiz, presented by the Colombian government.

The Minister Ruiz is a doctor and holds a master’s degree in economics from Javeriana University; also a master’s degree in public and occupational health from the Harvard School of Public Healthin Boston, and is a Doctor of Public Health from Mexico’s National Institute of Public Health, according to his resume posted to the Department of Health.

Among the professional career of Fernando Ruiz, it is also highlighted that, between From 2013 to 2016, he served as Deputy Minister of Health. Likewise, he was Scientific Director of the Cancer Treatment and Research Center Project, Director of the Center for Development Projects (CENDEX) of the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana and was co-founder and first president of the Colombian Association of Health Economics (Acoes).

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The head of the health portfolio was also part of the World Health Organization Executive Committeeconducts projects as a consultant for the Pan American Health Organization and, in addition, he was a researcher for Colciencias.

According to the Pan American Health Organization, the candidate who receives the majority of votes from member states will replace Carissa Etienne, who served as head of PAHO for two terms. Once the vote is known, the person elected will take office the next day. February 1, 2023 and will end his term on January 31, 2028.

“The election of the next Director of the Pan American Sanitary Bureau, the executive branch of PAHO, will take place during the 30th Pan American Sanitary Conference, to be held September 26-30, 2022. The Conference will elect the Director from among candidates nominated to the secret ballot. The candidate who will receive the majority of votes from member states will be designated,” the Pan American Health Organization said.

Antes de que se escoja al próximo director del organismo, el currículum y maps de presentation de los candidates pasará por une evaluación por parte de la presidenta del Comité Ejecutivo de la OPS, los Estados Miembros, Estados Participantes y Miembros Asociados de la Organización Panamericana de health.

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On June 2, the Ministry of Health announced that Colombia had been selected to be the National Chair of the American Network for Cooperation on Electronic Health – RACSEL for his progress “in positioning his leadership in the Americas region”.

During the ordinary meeting of the General Assembly, held in Chile, the engineer Constanza Engativá, head of the Office of Information and Communication Technologies of the Ministry of Health, was appointed president of the Network .

“It is an honor and I feel privileged to represent my country to ensure that we can continue to carry out this task, as it has been worked on directly by the founders”Engativa said.

Appointment will be valid for one yearin which Colombia will have the official spokesperson of the organization which, among other things, aims to promote digital health.

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