Cuba Salud is an international health convention organised by the Cuban health minister every year in Havanna. The exemplary Cuban health care system has an global reputation both for its services as well as for its education system. The important help that Cuba could contribute to the Ebola crisis is one example.In the context of this convention, the founding meeting of the Alliance of Associations of Public Health of the Americas was organised. This movement is part of the regionalisation process initiated by the WFPHA. The Cuban Society of Public Health (SOCUSAP) took up the leadership for this progress in the Americas. Mengistu Asnake, president of the WFPHA, gave an overview of the realisations already accomplished, such as the Asia Pacific liaison office, the African Federation of Public Health Associations, EUPHA, its European equivalent, the South East Asian Federation, recently initiated at the Kolkata meeting.
At the Cuban meeting, several countries of the Americas were represented: Brazil by ABRASCO, USA by APHA, Nicaragua by ANSAP, Bolivia by ABSO and Porto Rico by ASPPR, in addition to the hosting country . The public health associations attending decided to constitute the Alliance of Associations of Public Health of the Americas (APHAA – AASPA) under the motto: “Joining forces for the Health of our People” – “Uniendo esfuerzos por la salud de nuestros pueblos”. This realisation is based on a long collaboration among members such as Canadian Public Health Association, American Public Health Association, Cuban Society of Public Health, etc.
Dr Isabella Danel, Deputy Director of PAHO, honoured the meeting by her presence; she welcomed the initiative and offered help from PAHO.
SOCUSAP accepted to host the secretariat of APHAA. The immediate next steps for the Alliance will be the presentation of a constitution and elections. This is scheduled to happen during the ABRASCO annual meeting in Goiania.