The International Health Coordination Centre (IHCC) is a unique whole-of-Wales programme of work, bringing together all Health Boards and NHS Trusts. It promotes and facilitates international health partnerships, serving as a focal point for information sharing, knowledge exchange, collaboration and networking across the UK, Europe and the world.
The IHCC aims to maximise potential gains for the people in Wales and beyond, promoting a culture of global citizenship and supporting a health system, which is globally responsible, as well as more equal, resilient, sustainable and prosperous.
The IHCC is part of Public Health Wales and its WHO Collaborating Centre on Investment for Health and Well-being, sharing and amplifying international learning, benefits and opportunities. It has successfully established a strong network of key stakeholders within and beyond Welsh borders, including Welsh Government, Wales for Africa, NGOs, and UK, European and global partners and networks.
Charter for International Health Partnerships in Wales (the Charter)
The IHCC has facilitated the development of the Charter – a unique whole-of NHS commitments, aiming to ensure that principles and values of the NHS are reflected in all international health activity. It strengthens Wales’ reciprocal work to build evidence-based practice, and develop sustainable partnerships based on equity and in the pursuit of mutual tangible benefits and healthy prosperous lives for all, within and beyond Welsh borders. The Charter is based on Wales’ history of accomplishment and learning in this area and outlines the four foundations of successful international health partnerships: organisational responsibilities; reciprocal partnership working; good practice; and sound governance.
The Charter is available here: Charter for International Health Partnerships in Wales – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre On Investment for Health and Well-being
The IHCC has established a Charter Implementation Group (CIG) to provide a cross-NHS Wales platform for outreach and involvement related to international and global health work; informing, sharing, discussing, supporting and developing synergies and joint work streams. It works to create an active and motivated network of Health Boards and Trusts representatives who champion international health engagement, support ‘globally responsible’ sustainable organisations and drive a culture of ‘global citizenship’. The ultimate aim of the CIG is to help achieve better health and well-being and reduce health inequalities within and beyond Welsh borders.
Charter for International Health Partnerships in Wales: an Implementation Toolkit
The Charter Implementation Toolkit has been developed from lessons learned along the way, compiling examples of best practice and providing a governance framework to support international health activity. Designed as a ‘living document,’ the Toolkit will be continually updated to assist signatories in implementing charter principles.
The Charter Toolkit is available here: Charter Toolkit – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre On Investment for Health and Well-being
IHCC progress reports
The IHCC has published two progress reports highlighting NHS Wales’ achievements in working internationally and implementing the Charter. They also describe the IHCC enabling role and how it has evolved over the years in relation to global, UK, national and local developments.
The first IHCC progress report can be found here: IHCC Progress Report 2013-2015 – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre On Investment for Health and Well-being
The second IHCC progress report can be found here: IHCC Progress Report 2015-17 – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre On Investment for Health and Well-being
As part of implementing the Charter, the IHCC has started working on promoting Global Citizenship for Welsh Health professionals training as there was no specific resource for health professionals around this topic. Due to the skills and knowledge development Global Citizenship education could bring, a training resource of this nature is considered to be animportant opportunity for the NHS to build its capacity and capability in engaging internationally and strengthening its role as a global actor. As a result of NHS staff perceptions scoping work, the IHCC commissioned the Welsh Centre for International Affairs (WCIA) to develop and carry out a pilot course in partnership with Public Health Wales and Cwm Taf University Health Board. As a follow up, Oxfam has been commissioned to develop further and finalise the Global Citizenhip training in collaboration with the IHCC and other relevant partners.
NHS staff perception report can be found here:
NHS Wales Staff Perception of Global Citizenship – World Health Organization Collaborating Centre On Investment for Health and Well-being