1,200 Scientists Attend Symposium on Health Systems Research in Montreux

Dr. Lincoln Chen summarizing the symposium.

The First Global Symposium on Health Systems Research: Science to Accelerate Universal Health Coverage was conducted in Montreux, Switzerland on November 16-19, 2010 drawing more than 1,200 participants from more than 100 countries. The Symposium, organized by the WHO in partnership with 23 co-sponsoring organizations, focused on how knowledge can be produced, reproduced, and translated for improving health systems in all countries. Chinese participation achieved a milestone with more than 60 Chinese from mainland China (and many more Chinese living in other countries), organized by the Peking University Health Sciences Center.

CMB President Lincoln Chen delivered the conference’s concluding summary. In his remarks, he said that “Universal health coverage is a worthy common social destination that can ignite passion among engaged actors and constituents,” and urged the 1,200 Montreux participants to share the symposium’s with their colleagues at home. He highlighted the link between health systems research and universal health coverage by explaining that “Health systems research (HSR) is at the heart of knowledge linkages to social action, and universal health coverage is at the core of all health systems goals.”

CMB’s support for the conference reflects its programmatic emphasis on building capacity in health policy and systems sciences in China. The involvement of Chinese participants in the event, and their subsequent outreach to colleagues in China, can facilitate the adoption of health systems research to guide policies and management in China. China extended an invitation to host the next global symposium tentatively planned for 2013.