The Call to Reclaim Comprehensive Public Health responds to concerns and missed opportunities in pandemic responses. It calls on heads of state and government, and others involved in shaping the response to COVID-19, to adopt a set of ten principles and approaches to provide inclusive, just, equitable and effective public health approaches in countering COVID-19 and future pandemics.
As the world has responded to the COVID-19, it has revealed long-standing tensions between biosecurity- and biomedical-focused approaches to public health and those that address social determinants, facilitate participation and protect human rights. This call responds to a concern that certain pandemic responses in countries and at global level have failed to prioritise knowledge, equity and rights, and to learning from the positive impacts of proactive, co-operative, participatory, rights-based and evidence-informed public health responses.
In response, some members of the Reclaiming Comprehensive Public Health Group published a commentary in the BMJ Global Health outlining these concerns and positive experiences and calling for ‘a comprehensive, social determinant, participatory and justice-driven public health, in different regions and countries and globally'. The Reclaiming Comprehensive Public Health Group subsequently convened people from a range of countries, sectors, constituencies and disciplines involved in public health to prepare a Call to Action on heads of state and government and others involved in shaping the response to COVID-19.
We invite all involved in health and pandemic responses to read the Call, and if you support the principles, to sign it (personally and/or institutionally) and engage others. For any questions, please email RCPHcall@gmail.com.
The Call sets out 10 essential principles for a comprehensive approach to countering current and future pandemics. These key points are outlined below, or follow the link to access the full text of the relevant clause. The Call can also be viewed in a variety of languages on this page.
Ensure that health interventions are based on collaboration within and across countries
Engage the community in developing pandemic responses
Information used to shape and assess pandemic responses must be accessible, accurate, and timely
Set clear goals relevant to local contexts
Do no harm when responding to public health crises
Balance any pandemic control measures with the protection of human rights
Promote safety and support for health and other frontline workers
Ensure fair and safe access to PPE, vaccines, and other pandemic prevention and control goods
Provide economic and social support for all those negatively affected by pandemic control measures
Provide adequate funding for health and social protection
Show your support by adding your name to the list of public signatories or signing on behalf of your organisation. Below is the list of signatures from the public since the publication of the call. For any questions, please email RCPHcall@gmail.com.JOIN THE CALL TO ACTION
Show your support for the Call and encourage others to sign on by sharing it on social media.
A tweet sheet with suggested posts and accompanying infographics can be found here.
Below can find the 10 key components of the call, which can be downloaded or shared directly to twitter.
The Reclaiming Comprehensive Public Health Group involves people from diverse regions, areas of work and disciplines. It was initially drawn from discussions in the Health Systems Global SHAPES technical working group on promoting a comprehensive public health approach in responses to COVID-19. It has since expanded to include those involved in related health processes, such as the EQUINET-coordinated work on community engagement in responses to COVID-19. Different group members have contributed to various outputs, including the Call. The discussion in the Group on advancing a comprehensive public health response continues.
Thanks to those involved in producing the call to action, which includes:
Kirsten Accoe, MPH, Scientific Expert, Department of Public Health, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium
Wilson Damien Asibu, Executive Director, Country Minders for People's Development, Malawi
Sharon Attipoe-Dorcoo, Ph.D., MPH, Co-Principal, TERSHA LLC, USA
Dina Balabanova, Associate Professor in Health Systems/Policy, Department of Global Health & Development, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Gerald Bloom, Research Fellow, Institute of Development Studies, Brighton, United Kingdom
Kent Buse, Director, Healthier Societies Program, The George Institute for Global Health, Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Hawa Camara, MPH, CHES, Implementation Science Researcher, PhD candidate, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Sayan Das, Research scholar, Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India
Thilagawathi Abi Deivanayagam, Specialist Registrar in Public Health, University of Liverpool, UK
Nicholas A. Hooton, MA, MSc, VetMB, Research Uptake Advisor, Abergavenny, UK.
Natasha Howard, Associate Professor National University of Singapore Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health and London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Singapore.
André Janse van Rensburg, Senior Researcher, Centre for Rural Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Barbara Kaim, Programme Manager, Training and Research Support Centre, Zimbabwe
Rene Loewenson, Director, Training and Research Support Centre, Zimbabwe
Julia Lohmann, Assistant Professor, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK
Leslie London, Professor of Public Health Medicine, School of Public Health and Family Medicine, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa
Hayley MacGregor, Research Fellow, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, Brighton, UK.
Marsha Orgill, Senior Research Officer, Health Policy and Systems Division, University of Cape Town, South Africa
Nitin Bajpai, MPH, Research Manager, Health Division, Sarvodaya Gram Udyog Seva Sansthan, India
Masuma Mamdani, Independent Public Health Consultant, London, UK
Kaaren Mathias, Director - Burans community mental health, Herbertpur Christian Hospital, India and Public Health Physician, Canterbury District Health Board, NZ
Claudio A. Méndez, MPH, director and associate professor of health policy, Instituto de Salud Pública, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Austral de Chile, Valdivia, Chile
Tolib Mirzoev, Professor of International Health Policy and Systems, Health of Nuffield Centre for International Health and Development, University of Leeds, UK
Devaki Nambiar, Program Head, George Institute for Global Health, India
Erica Nelson, Research Fellow, Centre of History in Public Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, England; Institute of Development Studies, Brighton, England
Ateeb Ahmad Parray, MPH, Fellow, BRAC James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Elisabeth Paul, Associate Professor, School of Public Health, Université libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium
Stefan Swartling Peterson, Professor of Global Health, Uppsala University and Karolinska Institutet, Sweden and Makerere University, Uganda
Bridget Pratt, Senior Research Fellow, School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Australia
Ari Probandari, Professor of Public Health, Universitas Sebelas Maret, Indonesia
Eric Sarriot, Sr Health Systems Strengthening Advisor, Save the Children, Washington DC. USA [formerly]
Prashanth N Srinivas, Faculty & DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance Fellow, Institute of Public Health, Bengaluru, India
Felipe Szabzon, Brazilian Centre for Analysis and Planning CEBRAP, Citizenship, Health and Development Team, São Paulo, Brazil
Stephanie Topp, Associate Professor of Global Health and Development, College of Public Health Medicine and Veterinary Sciences, James Cook University.
Godelieve Van Heteren, MB/MD, Sr. International health and health systems, governance and PBF Advisor, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Keshri Vikash R, Senior Research Fellow, The George Institute for Global Health, New Delhi, India
Sophie Witter, Professor of International Health Financing and Health Systems, Institute of Global Health and Development, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, UK
Anthony Zwi, Professor of Global Health and Development, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
The hosting of the Call via Healthy Societies does not imply any direct relationship between the RCPH and Healthy Societies, or endorsement by or liability of the RCPH group for other content or functions on the Healthy Societies site.