The Regional Director
of World Health Organization Regional Office for South-East Asia (WHO SEARO),
Dr Samlee Plianbangchang
visited Sri Lanka
from 6 – 9 December 2010. The main purpose was to visit the National
Institute of Health Science to extend his support to make this a Regional
training centre for public health workforce and to exchange ties with the
Ministry of Health and WHO Country Office for Sri Lanka. RD’s
last visit to Sri Lanka
was in April 2008 to launch and open the Public Health Lounge in Colombo.
made a courtesy call on Hon. Minister of Health on 7th December
Thereafter he visited the NIHS in
Kalutara and addressed the gathering where he
stressed the importance of Public Health and the need for such public health
training centres in the region with particular
emphasis on the yeomen service this institute has provided for over 80 years.
RD jointly launched a website for NIHS with Hon. Lalith
Dissanayake, Deputy Minister of Health and also inaugurated the Public Health
Museum, the first one of its kind in the region which gives an overview into
the rich history of public health in Sri Lanka. As a follow up to the
NIHS visit, a mission from SEARO is scheduled for mid January 2011 to look
into utilizing the institute as a regional public health trainings centre and
designation of the institute as a WHO Collaborating Centre, in future.
also had a meeting with members of the Lankaphein,
the advocacy body for public health issues and education in Sri Lanka. He
pledged WHO’s support through the country office
for the efficient functioning of Lankaphein.
visited the WHO Country Office for Sri Lanka and met all staff. He
reviewed the areas of support that was requested by the Hon Minister of
Health during his recent visit to SEARO and provided guidance on the role the
country office would have to play in this regard.