• B680-volksgezondheid



Jean-Pierre Unger graduated as MD at the Free University of Brussels in 1979. In 1981 he worked as an ITM assistant in the Kasongo Project, Zaïre (where he learned health care management) and between 1985-1988 in the Thiès Project, Senegal, where he trained and supervised district medical officers, and learned district development strategies. This would become the issue of his PhD thesis. He worked for the ITM Nutrition Unit in 1984 and was tutor of the ITM Master in Public Health-programme in 1984-1985. In 1988, he contributed to prepare the European Commission international cooperation policy in the health sector. Between 1989 and 1993, he was ITM assistant, then first assistant, attached to the Public Health Research and Training Unit. He completed his PhD research at the Faculty of Medicine of the Free University of Brussels in 1992 with a thesis entitled "Role of health districts and methodology of their development in Africa". He was appointed ITM lecturer in 1994 and senior lecturer in 1998.

While attached to the ITM, Jean-Pierre Unger has worked for numerous international agencies, NGOs and governments. He has been involved in health services management, health policy design, support to academic development in LIC and MIC (e.g. participating in the creation of the Institute of Public Health, PUCE, Quito). He has also taught in many international universities, in Europe and in developing countries. Finally, for 15 years, he has been collaborating in a project in Belgium to create health districts/local health systems in a country which has no such policy.

With extensive field experience in Africa, Asia and Latin America, he is dedicated to critically documenting international aid and health policies’ impact on public services and systems in developing countries, to contributing to the development of a know how relevant for the management of publicly oriented services and to promoting publicly oriented health policies and management.


  • Publicly oriented management of networks
  • Hospitals
  • Family and community medicine
  • Disease control; resources and information sub-systems
  • Health policy analysis and intervention
  • Human resource development: non managed care techniques for health professionals
  • Public health academic development

Research fields, objectives and methods

I. Health systems and policy research

Research objectives

This section presents the policy research objectives, methods and results developed by myself and the rest of the unit between 1982 and 2015 (
In studying health systems and policies, our team aimed to assess the evidence basis of pro-market reforms, and to promote needed alternative options.

Accordingly, we:

  • Evaluated national health systems outputs (e.g. populations’ access to quality health care) and impact (on populations’ health status) – according to whether or not they aimed to commoditise care (delivery, management and financing);
  • Evaluated international health policies;
  • Studied the social, cultural, political and economic determinants of their design and implementation;
  • Formulated alternative national and international policies and promoted them in a wide range of decision-making and scientific circles.

Studies of national health policies

We studied:

  • The national health policies of Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Costa Rica and Chile;
  • The primary health care policies of Jordan, Bahrain, Iran and Egypt;
  • The regulation and control of (maternal) health care in India, China and Vietnam (annex 1).

In Latin America, we compared (International Health and Aid policies. Cambridge University Press, 2010) the operations and productivity of health systems that diverged in terms of the application of health market principles. Colombia, a good student by international standards, had a tragic health record (De Groote T., De Paepe P., Unger J.-P. Int J Health Serv, 2005). The public services of Chile (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Arteaga Herrera O., Solimano Cantuarias, PLoS Medicine, 2008) covered 84% of the population with half of the country’s expenditure on health. With this half, they managed to make the country a positive outlier in most health indicators related to health care. Finally, in 2002, the US and Costa Rica, with its heterodox policy, had similar demographic and epidemiologic characteristics, while Costa Rica was spending 9 times less per capita than the US on health (the challenge was to establish the probable, causal relationship between health systems performance and these population characteristics (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Buitrón R., Soors W, Am J PH, 2008).

In Colombia, through interviews with care providers and patients, we empirically assessed the effect of pro-market policies on access to care, and studied the barriers to access raised by a managed competition model. Similarly, we studied obstacles to care accessibility in Brazil, this time in relation to underfinanced public services. (Vargas I et al. BMC Health Serv Res 2010; Garcia-Subirats I et al, Int J Equity in Health. 2014; Garcia-Subirats et al, Social Science & Medicine 2014; Ingrid Vargas Lorenzo et al, BMC Health Services Research, 2015).

In Asia, we evaluated regulation and control of (maternal) health care delivery. While the Rockefeller Foundation admitted that without regulation and control, privatization of services cannot produce equity in access to care (G.Lagomarsino, S Nachuk, S Singh Kundra. Public stewardship of private providers in mixed health systems. Synthesis from the Rockefeller Foundation. Results for Development Institute. . Washington DC, 2009), we showed, on the basis of theoretical (Shuftan C, JP Unger, Social Medicine, 2011) and empirical observations in China, India and Vietnam (J.-P.Unger, P.Van Dessel, C. van der Veer, S.Shelmerdine, Hesvic Deliverable 5, 2012), how and why (maternal) care regulation and control are destined to be ineffective in LMICs – e.g. because of weak governance, medical secrecy and conflicts of interest related to physicians’ dual employment.

Study of international health policy

Our national policy studies enabled us to assess international health policies, as well as to contrast, on comparable indicators, the productivity of national health care policies which abide by international standards with that of those which do not. In addition, we explored the effectiveness of disease control in LICs, which has been at the core of international cooperation activities for the past 25 years.

In 1985, we examined the financial assumptions of the Selective Primary Health Care strategy, (promoted by Rockefeller Foundation associates just one year after the Alma Ata conference (Walsh J. A. & Warren K. S., 1979, Selective primary health care: an interim strategy for disease control in developing countries. NEJM, 301 (18), pp. 967-74) on the grounds that PHC was unaffordable. Accordingly, LIC public systems would deliver disease control and risk control interventions instead of individual health care. Using retrospective data, we demonstrated that the cost of primary care services delivering individual health care and disease/risk control (Kasongo Project Team. Primary health care for less than a dollar a year. World Health Forum. 1984; 5(3):211-5) could be similar to that of first line services delivering disease/risk control only – e.g. because of contrasting administration structures (Unger J.-P., Killingsworth J. R , Soc Sci Med, 1986).

In 2007, in a review of the multilateral agencies’ strategic literature, we concluded that, over 25 years all of them had adopted policies restricting the function of LIC public services to disease control and allocating individual health care delivery to commercial services De Paepe P., Soors W., Unger J.-P Cadernos de Saude Publica 2007). In 2008, we studied how 120 public-private global health initiatives were extended from the world capitals to the smallest African villages (57 such programs in Congo only) (J.-P. Unger. European Commission, 30 Sept 2008). Despite a discourse stressing priorisation in disease control, the international cooperation agencies had created the biggest ever bureaucracy - on the basis of efficiency claims.

For LIC populations, the mortality and suffering related to losing access to individual care proved immense. In addition, almost none of the Millenium Development Goals were achieved in Africa (International Health and Aid Policies.
Cambridge University Press, 2010). To explain why this was so, despite a huge financial effort and their limited scope, we:

  • Mathematically demonstrated that successful disease control programs require facilities actually used by patients (Unger J.-P., d'Alessandro U., De Paepe P., Green A, 2006); and
  • Studied the mechanisms whereby integrated disease control interventions strain patients’ access to care in those services in which they are integrated (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Green A 2003).
  • Showed that a and b together produced a catch-22 system failure because patients with various symptoms represent a pool of users that disease-specific programs require for early case-detection and follow-up (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Ghilbert P., Soors W., Green A, 2006).

We critically analyzed pro-market policies on four other key characteristics (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Ghilbert P., Soors W., Green A. 1. Disintegrated care, 2006; Unger J.-P., De Paepe J.-P., Ghilbert P., Soors W., Green A. 2. Integrated care, 2006): the mismatch of commercial health care delivery with Hippocratic ethics; the tensions between disease control and people’s demand for multi-function, bio-psychosocial care; the subsequent obstacles to community participation; and the restriction of professional autonomy by organizations conceived as machine bureaucracies to deliver hyper-standardized interventions.

Studies of policy determinants

The gross contrast between the efficiency of US and Costa-Rican health systems, amongst other indications that the Costa Rican model was superior, did not lead the WHO and allied agencies to promote the Costa Rican single public health insurer and public services model worldwide. Instead, they promoted the US model of managed competition between commercial insurers. We could thus investigate the policy determinants that led international agencies, despite the scientific evidence, to implement an agenda largely driven by health insurers.

Over 2 decades, health systems reforms explicitly aimed to expand the market of health care delivery and disease control. However, we had demonstrated in different ambits the weakness of scientific evidence in support of this move, showing that the link between features of international policy and their acknowledged commercial ambitions were a more important determinant of reforms than the alleged gains in efficiency and health status. In other words, science was being used as intellectual leverage in support of complex socio-political strategies.

On these grounds, we began to probe the determinants of policy design, focusing on political economics of care delivery and financing. We thus explored the history of

  • the international policy (International Health and Aid Policy, Cambridge University Press, chapter 1);
  • the Ecuadoran national policy (De Paepe P, R.Echeverria, E Aguilar Santacruz, JP Unger, 2012);
  • and the USAID and World Bank aid to Bolivia (Herland Tejerina et al, Int J Health Plann Manag. 2014) (Tejerina Silva H et al. Glob Soc Policy, 2011) (Herland Tejerina, Université Catholique de Louvain, 2012).

Historical studies also enabled us to explore non-economic determinants of policies, such as the US geo-strategy, which had a greater impact in Bolivia on aid priorities than did the interest of health insurances in its market.

Notice that studying disease control programs and national health care policies in LMICs proved much more important in deciphering international health policies than did our direct experience with multilateral agencies, especially after 1993 (1993 World Health Report. Investing in Health).

Promotion of alternative options

While critically assessing the strategies that undermined public services (such as focused underfinancing, purchaser provider split, management property split, municipalisation, focalization of public services on disease control and on the poor), we promoted others that would make publicly oriented care delivery more accessible and acceptable. Here are two examples.

Bio-psychological care in LMICS

Between 1993 and 1997, with the Belgian Cooperation project, we disseminated bio-psychosocial care in the health centers of 5 Ecuadoran health networks (districts) covering half a million people. Afterwards, we advocated an international initiative promoting doctor-patient communication and disseminating such care in the publicly oriented services of LMICs (Unger J. P. et al, Int J Health Serv. 2002) (Van Dormael M., Unger J.-P. British Medical Journal 2002) (Unger J.-P., Ghilbert P. British Medical Journal 2003). 13 years later, the WHO took a step in this direction (

In 2006 and 2007, respectively, Bolivia and Ecuador elected social-democrat governments. In response to a request for advice on policy making, we proposed the organisation of a bio-psychosocial care program in the two countries. We fell short of achieving an impact because of the governments’ focus on social determinants of health and because of frequent changes in the ministries of health at senior decision-making level (Herland Tejerina Silva et al, Social Medicine, 2009).

We then attempted to disseminate bio-psychosocial care in Costa Rica (in the Huetar Atlantic Region). This attempt also failed, this time because the managed care organization promoted by the World Bank was antagonizing the delivery of such care (Werner Soors, Pierre De Paepe, and Jean-Pierre Unger. International Journal of Health Services, 2014).

Health systems integration

Between 1985 and 88, I worked in a nationwide, though small, WHO project (4 staff) in charge of training Senegalese district medical officers and reorganizing care services networks. On this ground, we formulated national strategies combining, in health services networks, continuous medical education with operation and action research and coaching - in a way that contrasted with the prevailing practice in LICs of restricted disease-specific in-service training (Unger J.-P, World Health Forum 1989). This experience also led to the formulation of analytical frameworks of publicly oriented networks (Ingrid Vargas et al, Health Policy and Planning. 2014) (ML Vazquez et al, Rev Panam Salud Publica. 2009).

Later, integration of health systems was at the core of our proposed alternative option for international health policies (Unger J.-P. et al, Integrated care, International Journal of Integrated Care, 2006).

Accordingly, we:

  • disseminated techniques contributing to defragmentation of health systems in European, African and Latin American health services, using, for instance, inter-institutional physician teams to derive organization priorities from clinical case audit (Unger J.-P. et al, International Journal of Integrated Care, 2004) (see 8.2, Equity LA 2 project),
  • and promoted publicly oriented networks made of non-commercial, multi-institutional health services sharing common principles of Hippocratic medicine and not for profit health organization

Social valorisation of the produced knowledge

We disseminated the outputs of our systems and policy research by lecturing in other universities (see list in annex 3), attending conferences (annex 3 and 5), collaborating with LMIC academic institutions (annex 4) and directly intervening in policy-making circles (annex 1 and 2) – in turn a theme of action learning.

Because we had an explicit long-term research agenda, we could bind 14 published articles (together with others) in a book released by Cambridge University Press: International Health and Aid Policies: the Need for Alternatives.

II. Research in publicly oriented health management

Research objectives

Our research in health management aimed to produce knowledge useful to health professionals’ practice (e.g. by reducing their uncertainty in making decisions; increasing their effectiveness in action and relevance in evaluation; and promoting their reliance on reflective methods). Specifically, this knowledge was intended for ‘manager-professionals’ willing to improve health systems through training, education, team building, coordination, operational and action-research, communication, supervision, audit, planning, policy advocacy and resource management.

Normative in essence, our research in health management departed from classic descriptive academic studies in identifying in which respects and how the object of study can and should be improved – which requires a definition of the underlying values and criteria (2.3).

The hermeneutic unit of this knowledge was the ‘strategy’ that informs the planning and implementation of complex interventions including individual care delivery, disease control and resource management. Strategies are transferrable to a wide variety of contexts provided that their domain of validity is defined – where they do and do not work.

Research methods in health management

We treated praxis as the key activity relevant to production of practical, managerial knowledge. Our research method was labour intensive because we attempted to introduce changes in health services organization that would have maximum impact on care quality and access to care, over the largest possible territory and with the lowest possible mobilization of resources.

We used reflective methods to critically assess the performance of the tested strategies, and relied on inter-disciplinary (rather than multi-disciplinary) methods to study the strategies’ environmental constraints.

We used action learning in bottom-up interventions to amend policies and tried to motivate health professionals to steer changes in health systems by using symbolic, not financial, incentives - e.g. through a combination of continuous medical education techniques (Public Health Research and Training Unit of the ITM, Health Policy and Planning 1989), team building, managerial coordination, operation-research, in-service training, coaching (Unger J.-P., Ghilbert P., De Paepe P, BMJ, 2004) and health policy advocacy.

Here follow 3 examples:

  1. In an attempt to fix deficiencies in communication and coordination between systems tiers and health facilities in Belgium, a country that has no mid-level health administration, we launched as early as 1994 a (quasi) non-funded strategy that we named Local Health System (Silog/Sylos) (Unger J.-P. et al Santé conjuguée 2000) (Unger J.-P et al , European Journal of Public Health 2003)(Unger J.-P. et al, BMJ, 2004). Today, it is gradually expanding to Antwerp, Brussels, Liège and Malmédy, despite the absence of external financing (a collaboration with the University of Liège, Sart- Tilman. Ref.: Dr. Jean-Luc Belche). The project outputs include priorization in continuous medical education, development of management control systems and liaison devices, improved clinical coordination, introduction of reflexive methods in professional practice and decentralization of medical techniques from hospitals to first line services.
  2. The managerial techniques elaborated in Belgium now represent a key input in an EC funded project (www.equity- designed to validate and disseminate them in Colombia, Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, Chile and Argentina. Here are the project references. 2013-2018European Commission (FP7) Equity LA 2 in Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brasil, Colombia and Mexico. We were principal investigator and lead of the project action-research component. Objective: to study the impact of clinical and managerial coordination on care quality in Health Care Networks’ in different Latin American systems. In situ development of pilot networks for training and demonstration. EC grant agreement 305197, starting on 15/08/2013. Partners: Consorci de Salut i Social de Catalunya. CSC, España; Colegio Mayor de Nuestra Señora del Rosario. URosario, Colombia; Instituto de Medicina Integral Prof. Fernando Figueira. IMIP, Brasil; Fundaçao Universidade de Pernambuco. UPE, Brasil; Universidad de Chile. UChile, Chile; Universidad Veracruzana. UV, Mexico; Universidad Nacional de Rosario. UNR | Argentina; Universidad de la República. UDELAR, Uruguay.
  3. In 2008, with a small Belgian cooperation budget, our unit created the Redidesal network (, gathering public health departments promoting socially motivated health policies conceived to strengthen international academic exchanges and coordination with social organizations in the participating countries (most South American countries plus Mexico, Cuba and Costa Rica). In addition to educational achievements, such as an e-course in public policies, this initiative was used to improve access to individual care with trade unions in Bolivia, Ecuador and now Mexico. Here is the project reference. 2008-presentREDIDESAL Network project – Latin America Creation of - and scientific support to – a universities health policy network in Latin America. Objective: to develop academic relations and in each country work relationships with with social organisations. Financing: Belgian indirect cooperation (Raamakkoord-project). Participating institutions: Institute of Public Health (Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador), the Instituto de Higiene y Epidemiología (La Havana, Cuba), the National School of Public Health, Antiochia University (Medellin, Colombia), the School of Public Health of Fiocruz (Rio de Janeiro, Brasil), Buenos Aires University, Chile National School of Public Health, Universidad Veracruzana (Mexico) and Universidad Mayor San Simon (Cochabamba, Bolivia) (ref.: Prof. Ruben Dario Gomez, University of Antiochia, National School of Public Health) (

At the end of the day, producing normative knowledge in strategic management required lengthy follow-up of field projects in heterogeneous environments (annex 1 and 4).

Ethical reference values and care quality criteria in research

Our action learning, action research and descriptive research were informed by a set of ethical values / quality criteria for care, services and systems that promote ‘universal access to care’ as a human right. These criteria underpinned the test of our strategies to change health care services and systems. These values and criteria addressed

  • Non-commercial (i.e. publicly oriented, socially motivated) medical practice, health care delivery and publicly oriented health management (Unger J.-P., Marchal B., Green A. Int J Health Planning and Manag 2003).
  • Health organizations (Unger J.-P., Macq J., Bredo F., Boelaert M. Bull WHO 2000) in a way that fosters symbolic motivation amongst professionals.
  • Planning of publicly oriented health systems (Unger J.-P., Criel B. Int J Health Plan Manag 1995)•Integration of disease control programs in health care services (e.g. to avoid damaging delivery of individual care) (Unger J.-P., De Paepe P., Green A. Int J Health Planning and Management 2003).
  • The design of disease control programs. We elaborated a methodology called ‘vertical analysis’, conceived by P. Mercenier to plan disease control programs on the epidemiology of their disease object (Unger J.-P., Criel B., Mercenier
    P. Studies in Health Service Organization and Policy 1998).
  • The design of integrated health care policies (Unger J.-P. et al, Integrated care, International Journal of Integrated Care 2006)

These criteria sometimes represented the study hub:

  • ‘Integrated’ care assumes that prevention and promotion should be individually tailored and delivered during curative consultations and not limited to mass, standardized interventions, as is generally assumed in the public health literature. We used this criterion, for example, to evaluate a program in Senegal and identify avenues for designing under five clinics in LICs (Unger J.-P., Soc Sci Med 1991);
  • ‘Continuous care’ ensures that patients complete their treatment. It requires doctor-patient dialogue, appropriate financing mechanisms, defaulters tracing systems and sufficient access to referral hospital. We used this criterion, for example, to assess contracting out of TB programs in India (Unger JP et al. International health and aid policies, 2010) and malaria control programs in Africa (Unger J.-P., d'Alessandro U., De Paepe P., Green A. Tropical Medicine & International Health 2006).

Outputs of research in publicly oriented health management: development strategies

We coached regular and pilot services in Congo, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Niger, Bolivia, Ecuador and Belgium (annex 1, 4 and 6), in order to test health development strategies fit for socially oriented health services and systems. These strategies aimed to:

  • Improve care quality with ‘non managed-care’ techniques (Unger JP, Vargas I, Vázquez ML. International health and aid policies; the need for alternatives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010);
  • Improve access to first line health services (De Paepe P. et al. Improving access. International health and aid policies, 2010);
  • Develop holistic, preventive programs in Africa (Unger J.-P., Soc Sci Med 1991);
  • In-service train, educate and coach mid-level health managers (Public Health Research and Training Unit, Annals of Community-Oriented Education 1992);
  • Develop the administration of African local health systems (JP Unger PhD thesis, University of Brussels, Faculty of Medicine, 1991);
  • Use audit in medical practice to derive managerial priorities, while avoiding peer-judgement (Unger J.-P. International Journal of Integrated Care, 2004);
  • Support the universal right to care with strategies tailored to the needs of academic public health departments (Unger JP, Van Dessel P. In: International health and aid policies, 2010);
  • Strengthen public services with Mother and Child programs (Unger J.-P., Soc Sci Med 1991);
  • Develop publicly oriented drug distribution systems in Africa (Unger J.-P., Yada A., Health Policy and Planning 1993);
  • Design symbolic strategies to motivate health professionals in publicly-oriented health services (submitted).
  • Promote the use of family therapy by GPs in LMICs (Quinet A et al. J Fam Med Dis Prev, 2015)
  • Use epidemiological information efficiently in African local health systems management (Unger J.-P., Dujardin B. Bulletin of WHO 1992)
  • Many other strategies are in the grey literature (for instance, clinical coordination techniques for Latin American publicly oriented services; indication and use of methadone by Brussels GPs; antenatal consultation by Ecuadoran GPs; under- five clinics by nurses in Senegal).

Social valorisation of the produced knowledge

The key outlet for the knowledge produced in p.o. health management has been teaching in ITM (see below), much less in other universities. By contrast, teaching health policy was the reverse – a great deal in foreign universities, none in ITM.

To this rule, there was one exception. One long-term (16 years) academic cooperation specifically involved exchanges of scientific and professional knowledge in p.o. health management e.g. with the Institute of Public Health (Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador). Together, we developed teaching and led action research in several regions - to solve problems with health care services and derive theory.

Here is the project reference:1998-presentQuito, Ecuador Creation and scientific follow-up of the Instituto de Salud Publica, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Ecuador (financed by the Belgian Government) (Ref.: Dr Ignace Ronse, DGDC, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Brussels, Belgium)


Along my career, a rather inductive reasoning inspired both my management and policy research methods:

  • a field practice of introducing changes in health care services and local systems, based on explicit values and criteria allowed us to formulate a normative, strategic knowledge for the management of publicly oriented health services
  • if these theories (models, concepts, indicators, etc.) were used to assess national health care policies, we also learned by action in health policy research.
  • in turn, we assessed international health policies on this analysis of national policies and of disease control programs
  • these evaluations provided a ground to explore the determinants of health policy design and implementation
  • At the end of the day, this knowledge was fed into action learning to amend health policies.

The annex 7 provides a list of grants, awards and reviews


Master of Public Health

"International Course for Health Development”

  • 2016 - ? : lectures on action research in the MPH program (20h)
  • 1996 - 2011 (co)director. Course planning, mid-term policy, resource management, etc.
  • 1997-2015: Lectures in the MPH program on: local health systems (56 h), hospitals (52 h) and, according to years: introduction to health services organisation (14 hours), bottom-up health policy strategies (6 hours), national health planning (12 hours).
  • 2006-2008: In charge of the following teaching activities : course introduction, information sessions, self-evaluation, debates and mission reports.
  • 1984-1985: Tutor of the MPH program. Collaboration to the course organization. Teaching in public health. Coaching of students.

Certificate in Tropical Medicine

  • 1995-2015 Lecture: public health (44 h)
  • Exercises on disease control programs (10 h)

PhD coaching and jury

  • Dr. Herland Tejerina. International Cooperation in the Bolivian Health Sector: a win-win game?
    Co-promoter, together with Prof. Marie-Christine Closon, School of Public Health, Department of Health Economics Université Catholique de Louvain. PhD obtained on Dec the 17th, 2012
  • Dr. María Caballer Tarazona CIEGS - Universitat Politècnica de València Research Center for Health Economics & Management
    PhD jury
  • Dr Ingrid Vargas – Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona, Facultad de Medicina. Barreras en el acceso a la atención en salud en modelos de competencia gestionada: un estudio de caso en Colombia.
    PhD jury.
  • Dr Jean-Luc Belche – Université de Liège. The Local Health Systems project in Belgium (in progress)




2014                                  MoH and CCSS, San Jose, Costa Rica

                                              Technical assistance to the Costa Rican health system (Caja Costarricense de Seguridad Social). Design of strategies to disseminate bio-psychosocial care in first line health services. Support to the Northern cross-border (with Nicaragua) health project.

2009 - 2013                   European Commission FP7 project: Impact on equity of access and efficiency of Integrated Health care Networks in Colombia and Brazil (Equity-LA)

                                              Principal investigator. Objective: to study the impact on equity and efficiency of different types of integrated health care networks (IHN) and the implications for an universal and equitable access to maternal and child care, in Colombia and Brazil. Partners: Consorci Hospitalari de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain; Universidad del Rosario, Bogota, Colombia; CPqAM/FIOCRUZ, Recife, Brazil. Ref.: Dr Albrecht Jahn, EC, Brussels


2013                                  Teheran, Shiraz, Iran

                                              Sent by WHO - EMRO to advise the National Family Medicine Programme on its expansion into Iranian urban areas. Ref.: Dr. Hassan Salah, WHO EMRO

2009-2012                     European Commission FP7 project: Health system stewardship and regulation in Vietnam, India and China (Hesvic)

                                              Principal investigator and project scientific lead. Objective: to study (maternal health) regulation in Vietnam, India and China. Partners: University of Leeds; KIT, Amsterdam; Hanoi School of Public Health, Vietnam; IPH Bangalore, India; Fudan University, China. (ref.: Dr Albrecht Jahn, EC, Brussels)


2007                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Formulation of the ECU Belgian bilateral cooperation project. Strengthening of the national health policy and services in Esmeraldas, Pichincha, Manabi, Carchi and Ibarra provinces. Ref.: Dr P.Bossijns, Belgian Technical Cooperation, Brussels

2007                                  La Paz, Bolivia

                                              Evaluation of the Bolivian health policy and sector reform on invitation of Dr. Nila Heredia Miranda, Minister of Health and Sports

2007                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Advisor of the health policy, on invitation of General Director of the Ministry of Health. Training of regional and district authorities in health services organisation (Belgian technical Cooperation financing). Ref.: Dr Nancy Vazconez, WHO, Managua

2006                                  Rabat, Morocco

                                              Technical assistance to the Moroccan Government in the design of its contracting out policy (WHO EMRO mission).

2005-2008                     European Commission Inco project: Health Policy-making in Vietnam, India and China: key determinants and their interrelationships (Hepvic project)

                                              Principal Investigator. Objective: to study (maternal) health policy processes in Vietnam, India and China EU Contract no.: PL 517746. Partners: University of Leeds, Nuffield Centre for International Health and Development, (lead) United Kingdom, University of Bologna, Royal Tropical Institute, The Netherlands, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Fudan University, School of Public Health, P. R. China Centre for Management of Health Services, Indian Institute of Management, India, Hanoi School of Public Health. 2007. (ref.: Dr A.Jahn, EC, Brussels)

2005                                  Manama, Bahrein

                                              WHO-EMRO mission to assess the country primary health care system and to advise the MoH on strategies to improve access to and quality of family medicine.

2005                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Technical advisor on health policy to the National Health Council (Conasa) and the Municipality of Quito (ref: Dr Marcelo Placencia)

2004-2005                     Egypt

                                              Lead of the mid-term review of the national family health programme, a programme implemented by the British Council, and financed by the European Union (in Alexandria, Menoufia, Sohag regions and in Suez where the donor was USAID), with involvement of the MoH and the main donor agencies (World bank, USAID, EU, FNUAP). (Aedes missions in November, December 2004 and January 2005).

2004-2005                     Costa Rica

                                              Technical assistance to the design of the Costa Rican health policy (as part of the BVO Belgian project). Support to the integration of Social Security health services (CCSS)  in Huertar Atlantico region.

1999                                  Bucharest, Romania

                                              Participation as health planner to the Institutional reform European Union. Demonstration of Swedish and Danish health services to senior MoH decision makers. Phare project in Romania (Chema contract).

1997                                  Lomé, Togo

                                              Participation to the identification of the IDA health project (World Bank, AF5PH)

1992-1995                     Ouagadougou and Washington, Burkina Faso

                                              Participation to the pre-appraisal, appraisal and supervision of the PDSN project, the second World Bank health project in Burkina Faso. Key outputs of the 2 projects: creation of the national distribution pharmacy for essential generic drugs (CAMEG) and creation of an operation theatre in each (second line) health centre to transform them in district hospitals (World Bank, AF5PH). Ref: Bruna Vitagliano

1990, 91, 92, 93         Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

                                              Supervisions of the PDSS project, in particular of the Ouagadougou training center of district medical officers ("Projet de Développement des Services de Santé") (World Bank, AF5PH).

1990                                  Yaounde, Cameroon

                                              Member of the health sector identification mission (World Bank, AF1PH).

1989, 90                          Dakar, Senegal

                                              Participation to the identification, pre-appraisal and appraisal of the "Projet de développement des Ressources Humaines" (PDRH). Planning of general hospitals and health centers (called "centres de santé" et "postes de santé")  and participation to the design of the pharmaceutical policy. Design of the World Bank's support to health districts (1990-1995 program). (World Bank, AF5PH). Ref: Theresa Ho





2015                                  European Parliament

                                     Member of the European MEP – scientists pairing scheme (STOA)

2011-2012                     PAHO

                                              External advisor to the design of the PAHO policy on services integration.  Invited to the 44th PAHO Technical Consulting Committee in Barcelona, Spain

2008                                  European Commission, Brussels

                                              EC helpdesk support (IBF SA contract). Preparation of the European Commission Policy paper on standards for assessing the integration and impact of disease control programmes upon health systems (ref.: Dr Juan Garay, EC, Brussels)

2007                                  Santiago, Chile (PAHO)

                                              Expert on integration / defragmentation of local health systems (Dr Hernan Montenegro, PAHO, Washington)

2002-2007                     Antwerp, ITM

                                              Technical assistance to the design of the Belgian aid to developing countries health sectors (Beleidsvoorbereidend onderzoeksproject). Member of the Be-Cause health group.

2003-2007                     Luxemburg, EU

                                              Member of the Belgian Representation Team to the European Union Working Party on health systems (EU Sanco Directorate) (ref.: Dr Daniel Rijnders, MoH, Brussels, Belgium)

1991                                  New York, USA

                                              UNICEF adviser to the Bamako Initiative Programme (ref.: Dr. A. Paganini and Pangu)

1990                                  Washington, USA

                                              (2 missions). Consultant for the World Bank (AFTPN) on roles and organization of health centres and first Line Services in African health systems) (contact: Dr J.-L. Lamboray).

1988-1989                     Commission of the European Communities

                                              1) Preparation of the health sector policy of the European Economic Communities. (e.g. with study of the EEC policy and projects,). Ref. Marina Baraldini.

                                              2) Writing of a manual for the identification and follow-up of EC health programs and projects (e.g. hospital management, health system financing, nutritional and epidemiological surveillance, design of laboratories, disease-specific control programmes, etc.).

                                              3) Design of a tentative reorganization of the EC health sector cooperation services.



Cooperation with NGOs and other health organisations

  • Federación de Asociaciones para la Defensa de la Sanidad Pública, Spain (ref. drs. Marciano Sánchez Bayle and Dr. Carmen Ortiz; []) since 2008.
  • Belgian Federation of Maisons Médicales (ref. Dr. Isabelle Heymans) since 2000
  • Belgian Social Forum
  • Co-founder of the Belgian Santé Solidarité network.  Member of its Board of Directors



2014 – 2015                  Free University of Brussels, School of Public Health

                                              Courses on international health policies (SAPU L 505), seminars on themes related to national health policies, mainly in Sub Saharan Africa (SAPU L 606), and Course on Evaluation of Health Programs (SAPU L 511)

1998-present              Institute of Public Health, Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Ecuador

                                              Multiple lectures, conferences and participation to the examination committees of the MPH programme

2011-present              Maastricht University (department of Health, Ethics and Society, medical faculty)

                                              Lectures: international health policies

2013                                  Aegean University, Department of Public Health, Izmir, Turkey

                                              Lectures: strategies to disseminate bio-psychosocial care and reflective methods in health systems

2012                                  Uludag University, Bursa, Turkey

                                              Conference: International Health Policy and Reforms. (15th Turkish National Public Health Congress

2012                                  Free University of Brussels

                                              Lectures: European global health policy, Public Health Spring University

2012                                  Belgian Royal Academy of Overseas Sciences, Brussels

                                              Conference: Professionalism in health care management in LMICs

2011                                  Instituto de Salud Pública, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador, Quito

                                              Conference: Research methodologies in health policies

2011                                  National Lanus University, Buenos Aires, Argentina

                                              Conference: Comparative analysis of health systems in Latin America

2011                                  Universidad del Rosario, Bogota, Colombia

                                              Conference: Comparative analysis of Brazil and Colombia health systems

2011                                  Free University of Brussels, Malta

                                              Lectures: control of health determinants in family practice

2011                                  Universidad de Antiochia, Medellin, Colombia

        Lecture: Principles of national health policy and planning

2006, 2010                    Universidad de Las Palmas Gran Canarias, Spain

                                              Lecture: International health policies. Practical and theoretical program of public health and international cooperation. Cátedra UNITWIN-UNESCO de Investigación, Planificación y Desarrollo de Sistemas Locales de Salud de la ULPGC

2008                                  National Health and Welfare Institute, Helsinki

                                              Conferences: 1. International Health Policies. 2. The Belgium Local Health System project

2008                                  KIT, Amsterdam

                                              Conference: management contracts in Costa Rica and Performance-Based Financing

2008, 2009                    Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Santé Publique, Rennes, France

                                              Lectures: Health planning and regulation

2007                                  INHEM, Havana, Cuba

                                              Conference: the role of health systems in controlling social determinants of health

2007                                  Amsterdam, the Netherlands

                                              Conferences: health policies and international cooperation in Latin America (KIT, Amsterdam and Institute of Social Sciences, Den Haag, Prof Jim Bjorkman).

2007                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Co-organiser and keynote speaker. Public Health Symposium on Health Policy in Latin America (“La política de salud en los países latinoamericanos”), 29-31 Oct. 2007, 50th anniversary of FLACSO, the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences.

2007                                  Santander, Spain

                                              Conference. International health policies. International School “Raul Prebisch”, the “Instituto Complutense de Estudios Internacionales”, Madrid) and the “Universidad Internacional Menendez Pelayo”, Santander (09-10 July 2007).

2006                                  Brussels, Belgium

                                              Conference: Alternatives in international health policies. CEPULB (Conseil de l’Éducation Permanente de L’Université de Bruxelles)

2006                                  Universidad de Pais Vasco, Bilbao, Spain

                                              Conference. HAART, care continuity and policy design. Hegoa Center for development studies.

2006                                  Instituto Nacional de Sanidad Carlos III, Madrid, Spain

                                              Lectures: international health policies.

2006                                  University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

                                              Conference. Research in public health policy. Centre for International Public Health Policy

2006                                  National Public Health School, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

                                              Conference: Health Systems and Regional Integration. Mercosur Forum , 22 - 24 March 2006 .

2005                                  University of Chile, Santiago, Chile

                                              Conference. International health policies.

2004                                  University of Costa Rica, San José, Costa Rica

                                              Conference: International health policies.

2004                                  Paris Dauphine University, France

                                              Lectures. Organisations policies for sustainable development (in the third cycle professional diploma in sustainable development)  (Prof. Trinh).

2004                                  8th international conference on health systems science. Geneva, Switzerland

                                              Conference. J.-P. Unger, P. De Paepe, P. Ghilbert. Health systems between public and private management. Policy options in international aid. Universities of Geneva and Lyon, Geneva, Switzerland, 1 – 4 Sept 2004.

2004                                  Amsterdam, The Netherlands

                                              Conference P. De Paepe, J.-P. Unger. Reorienting International Aid: Quality Standards For Eligible Publicly Oriented Health Services. 3rd symposium on research in international health: Research for Better Health. Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, 19 May 2004.

2003                                  Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, School of Public Health, Spain

                                              Lectures. Health financing in LMICs, pharmaceutical management, international cooperation. Diploma in health and international cooperation (Prof. Javier Freire)

1997, 1998,                  Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

2001 to 2004,              Member of the MPH Examination jury.

2007, 2009                   

1999                                  Carol Davila Faculty of Medicine, University of Bucharest

                                              Lectures. Public health, MPH programme, Prof. Enachescu

1989, 1996-97            Royal Tropical Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

                                              Lectures (MPH programme). Health manpower management and planning

1995                                  Universidad Nacional del Nordeste, Argentina

                                              Lectures (MPH programme). Hospital management and health network organization.

1994                                  Free University of Brussels, Belgium

                                              Lectures. Resources management in LMICs

1989, 90,                        Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, Spain

1992-1994                     Lectures. Evaluation of health services and district health systems. Audience: Spanish district medical officers.

1990, 92, 94                 Institut National d’administration sanitaire, Rabat, Morocco

                                              WHO missions. MPH curricular development

                                              Lectures: development strategies for local health systems



2015                                  Universidad Veracruzana, Mexico

                                              Technical support to teaching program design.

2009                                  Mbarara, Uganda and Lund, Sweden

                                              End-evaluation of the Swedish Development Agency (SIDA) LUMUST project, a academic cooperation project between Lund University and Mbarara University of Sciences and Technology (ref.: Dr Isaline Greindl, AEDES, Brussels)

2007–2009                    "Equal opportunities for health action for development" Project

                                              EU Contract n°: ONG-ED/2006/120-752 - Ref. 47). An EU project to disseminate international health teaching in European universities. Partners: CUAMM (Padova), University of Florence, Medeor-Germany, and other academic institutions.


1994-1997                     Cochabamba, Bolivia

                                              Scientific follow up of the Belgian medical cooperation project (partim) in Cochabamba to:

-     develop a public health unit in the Universidad San Simon de Cochabamba;

-     implement action research to improve urban health services.  Ref: Jean Van Der Vennet and Dr. Luc De Backer

1994-1996                     Corrientes, Argentina

                                               Organization of a MPH program jointly organized by the North-East National University (Argentina) and IT. Ref.: Prof. Alfredo Zurita

1993-95                           Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

                                               Scientific of a ITM /World Bank DMO training project. Ref. Dr. François Bredo

1992                                   Cochabamba, Bolivia

                                               A Belgian Cooperation (AGCD) mission to explore a possible cooperation with the Mayor San Simon University.

1991                                   La Paz, Bolivia

                                               An ITM mission to prepare a collaborative project between the "Universidad Catolica Boliviana" and ITM.

1991                                   Santa Cruz, Sucre, Cochabamba, and La Paz, Bolivia

                                               A Belgian cooperation mission. Objective: to advise on the design of Belgian academic cooperation activities in Bolivia e.g. with post-graduate school of Santa Cruz University (Universidad Autonoma Gabriel Rene Moreno) and medical faculty at La Paz University (Universidad Mayor de San Andres de La Paz). Ref.: Dr C.Darras

1989-1991                     Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

                                               Mission for the Belgian and Brazilian National Funds for Scientific Research (FNRS and CNPQe) to design and implement an academic collaboration between the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and ITM.




2014                                  Third Latin American and Caribbean Congress of Global Health, San Jose de Costa Rica

                                              Conference. Health policy, a subject of descriptive or action research? The case of  the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) treaty


2014                                  International Association of Mutual Aid Organizations, Bruges (European Affairs Committee, Association Mutualiste Internationale)

                                              Conference. US EU Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations


2014                                  Social Platform and European Public Health Alliance, Brussels

                                              Conference and debate, with Prof. David Price, University of London, and Marco Düerkop, DG Trade, lead negotiator for Services in the (Transatlantic Trade) TTIP negotiations


2013                                  International Association of Health Policy, a conference at ITM

                                              Together with SESA, Catholic University of Louvain, organisation of the IAHP conference. Object: South North cooperation and contribution of Latin American academics to the design of European health policies (with selected participants from tens of European, South and North American universities, socio-political, social, professional and policy organizations). Political participants were members of the Belgian and El Salvador executives, MEPs and European national MPs. 

2011-2013                     Medicus Mundi, Spain

                                              Conference. International Health Financing Policies, Barcelona (50th anniversary of MM-S)

2011-2013                     Beijing, 2012 Second Global Symposium on Health Systems Research

                                              Conference. Comparative results of the Hesvic project. Regulation and control of maternal health care in Vietnam, India and China

2012                                  Malta 2012, European Public Health Association Congress

                                              Marıa Luisa Vazquez Navarrete, I Garcia-Subirats, ML Vazquez, I Vargas, JP Unger, AS Mogollon- Perez, MR da Silva, P De Paepe. Access barriers of healthcare in the health systems of Brazil and Colombia. European Journal of Public Health, Vol. 22, Supplement 2, 2012: 138

2012                                  Plateforme santé solidarité, Brussels

                                              Conference. Similarities of health reforms in LMICs and Europe

2011                                  International Association of Health Policy, Ankara

                                              Keynote speech and conference. JP Unger, P Van Dessel, P De Paepe, A.Stolkiner. Why suspecting a capture of public research in health systems research by private interests?

2011                                  ITM, Hera

                                              Conference: Post MDG health policies and the goal of individual, versatile health care for all

2011                                  European Commission

                                              Opening keynote speech of the first European Conference on Global Health (Brussels, June the 27th, 2011): “From Global Health to Local Health Systems”

2011                                  Belgian Technical Cooperation, Brussels

                                              Conference. National health policies in developing countries

2011                                  European Parliament, Commission of social affairs, Mixed EU ACP parliamentary meeting, Brussels

                                              Conference to the European and ACP MPs. Health care policies in developing countries. Tens of millions of lives to save.

2011                                  Consorcio hospitalario de Cataluña and PAHO

                                              Seminar on development of a publication series – guides for the development of integrated health care networks in Latin America

2011                                  Salut Per al Desenvolupament, Barcelona

                                              Conference. International health policies

2010                                  Asociación Española de Medicos, Madrid

                                              Presentation of the European citizen chart of health rights, together with Federación de las Asociaciones de Defensa de la Sanidad Pública

2010                                  European Parliament, Brussels

                                              Presentation of the European citizen chart of health rights, together with Federación de las Asociaciones de Defensa de la Sanidad Pública

2009                                  University of Coventry, UK

                                              Conference. international health policies. Conference of the International Health Policy Association

2008                                  European Commission, Brussels

                                              EC Stakeholder Consultation: Progress Review of the European Programme for Action to Confront HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis Through External Action (2007-2011)

2008                                  European Commission, International Health Partnership, Brussels

                                              Conference. Strengthening health systems to deliver comprehensive health care

2008                                  Geneva Health Forum, Switzerland

                                              Conference.  Integration of Hospitals in Health Systems. Parallel Session "Hospitals and Health Systems: Only High Tech?" Towards Global Access to Health (Strengthening Health Systems and the Global Health Workforce), 25 - 28 May 2008.

2007                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Co-organisation of the Public Health Symposium “La política de salud en los países latinoamericanos”, 50th anniversary of the FLASCO (Facultad Latino Americana de Ciencias Sociales) . Keynote speech: the Ecuador national health policy

2007                                  Salvador de Bahia, Brazil

                                              Conference. Consistency of international health policies with the right to health Participation to the IV Brazilian Conference on Social and Human Science in Health, the XIV Congress of the International Association of Health Policy and the X Latin-American Congress of Social Medicine from 15 to 18 Jul 2007.

2007                                  Amsterdam, The Netherlands

                                              Keynote speaker, 5th European Congress on Tropical Medicine and International Health (ECTMIH) annual conference. 24-28 May 2007. Issue: International policies, primary health care, disease control and integration. Chair of a seminar on primary health care.

2006                                  Quito, Ecuador

                                              Conference. Health reform in the UK, Sweden and Holland. Primera Jornada Internacional sobre Reforma y Aseguramiento en Salud, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador and Salud de Altura project (MDMQ-CT Belga).

2006                                  Montreux, Switzerland

                                              Conference. European Aid Policy in Health: why is an alternative needed? 14th European Public Health Association (EUPHA) conference.

2006                                  Brussels, Belgium

                                              Conference to the Summer University of Attac. J.-P. Unger, P. De Paepe, W. Soors. Which alternative to the international health policy?

2006                                  Ghent University, Belgium

                                              Conference. integration of disease control programmes into health care services in Holland, Mali, Costa Rica and Belgium. An event organized by the universities of Ghent, Maastricht, and the “Towards unity for health” (TUFH) network.

2006                                  11th world public health congress. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

                                              Conference: J.-P. Unger, P. De Paepe, W. Soors. Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica: a comparative assessment of health policies. Poster: J.-P. Unger, P. De Paepe, W. Soors. Are international health evidence-based? Presentation to by-events (the International Association of Health Policy and Rede de Investigação em Sistemas e Serviços de Saúde no Cone Sul).

2005                                  4th regional conference of the Arab Administrative Development Organization, Arab States League, Amman, Jordan

                                              Keynote speaker: How can health insurance management improve access to health care in developing countries?

                                              Conference: J.-P. Unger, B. Criel, S. Dugas, J. Van der Vennet, M. Roland. Integrating hospitals in a health care network: A Belgian Experience, the Local Health Systems project”.

2005                                  XI national congress of the Spanish Society of Public Health and Health Administration, Gran Canaria, Spain

                                              Keynote speaker. Neoliberal vs. Social-Democrat international health policies

2005                                  6th international conference on the scientific basis of health services, Montreal, Canada

                                              Conference. Aid policy for health between evidence and vested interests. Insights from Colombia and Costa Rica (18 - 20 September 2005).

2005                                  National hospital days Casablanca, Morocco

                                              Keynote speaker. The Egyptian reform process

                                              Conference. The integration of hospitals in the Belgian health system and the Sylos project. (WHO-EMRO mission)

2005                                  Médecins du Monde, Paris

                                              Conference. The Millennium Development Goals

2004                                  5th Congress of the Andean Society of Family Medicine, Quito, Ecuador

                                              Keynote speaker (16 – 20 February 2004).

2003                                  Berlin, Germany

                                              Participation to the WHO conference on neglected diseases (December 2003).

2003                                  11th annual EUPHA conference Rome, Italy

                                              Conference. The Local Health Systems (LHS) project in Belgium. J.-P. Unger, B. Criel, S. Dugas, J. Van der Vennet, M. Roland. (20 - 22 November 2003).

2001                                  Antwerp, Belgium

                                              Co-organization of - and participation to - the “Health Care for All” meeting (25 – 26 October 2001) set up jointly by the Belgian Government and the ITM, Belgian Presidency of the European Union (

2000                                  INHEM, La Habana, Cuba

                                              Organization of a meeting of ex ICHD participants from Latin America.

1996                                  Lomé, Togo

                                              Organization of and teaching in a seminar organized jointly by the World Bank, Unicef and the WHO for the national, regional and provincial health directors to launch the country district policy

1993                                  Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium

                                              Co-organization of an international colloquium on the training of general practitioners in developing countries.

1992                                  Mbour, Senegal and Basel, Switzerland

                                              Participation to an international meeting on district health services. The meeting was organized by the Swiss Tropical Institute, the ITM and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in view of the preparation of the World Development Report

1985                                  Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium

                                              An international meeting on selective primary health care [1].

1989                                  Utrecht, The Netherlands

                                              Participation to the WHO/EURO collaborative centres meeting as the ITM representative.

[1] Further details, see : D. Grodos, X. de Béthune. Les interventions sanitaires sélectives: un piège pour les politiques de santé du tiers-monde. Soc.Sci.Med.Vol.26, N°9, p. 879-889, 1988.




2004-2006                     Costa Rica (Huertar Atlantica)

                                              Scientific guidance of the regional health services of Costa Rican Social Security Administration (CCSS). Objective: to introduce non managed care techniques to improve care quality in first line services. Missions financed by the Belgian Cooperation.

2002                                  Jordan

                                              One mission to advise the USAID Primary Health Care Initiatives project (PHCI, implemented by Abt Associates) on strengthening family medicine and teamwork. Ref.: Dr. Carlos Cuellar

1995-1999                     Ecuador

                                              Scientific follow up of the Belgium Ecuador cooperation (Atencion Primaria de Salud) project in Puyo, Tena, Macas, Quevedo, Cañar and Azogues districts. Training of DMOs, field supervisions, guidance of action research, support of management and planning activities. (Ref.: Dr. Leo Reijntjens, BTC

1992,                                   Bolivia (Santa Cruz)

1994-2000                         Scientific follow up of the Belgian medical cooperation project in Santa Cruz - an action research project conceived to develop health service networks. (ref: Drs C.Darras and M.Bossuyt)

1992, 1993                    Niger (Dogon Doutchi)

                                              Scientific follow-up of the Cimefor training and research project aimed at MoH district medical officers (Misereor, Aachen, Germany).  (ref.: Dr. Govert Van Heusden)

1993                                  Colombia (Cali)

                                              Lectures in health service organization for Latin-American GTZ staff

1990                                  Spain, Vigo

                                              Lecture for the Spanish Association of Hospital and District Directors on district organization and implementation of the "Ley General de Sanidad".

1989                                  Chad, Ndjamena

                                              Consultant for the Harvard Institute for International Development and the Ministry of Health. Evaluation of the national health information system.  (Ref: Dr. Isaline Greindl, Aedes, Brussels)

1985-1988                     Senegal, Thiès Project ("Strengthening PHC in Senegal")[1]

                                              A WHO – MoH – ITM project. Objective: to create in Thiès a public health training centre for DMOs and RMOs. Activities: curricular development, field supervision, action research and technical advise to MoH.

1985                                  Senegal, Dakar, Senegal

                                              WHO mission. Design of the Thies project under supervision of Prof. P.Mercenier (ITM) and Dr. Halfdan Mahler, WHO.

1982, 1983                    Congo (then Zaïre) Gemena Project, Zaïre

                                              A Free University of Brussels project. 8 months mission to transform a iodine deficiency prophylaxis program into a PHC system for 150,000 inhabitants.  Ref.: Prof. C.Thilly



1981                                  Congo (then Zaïre) Kasongo Project, Zaïre[2]

                                              ITM assistant. Duties: clinical work; management of district health services; action-research; training of nurses and medical assistants.

[1] Further details in: J.-P. Unger, P. Daveloose, A. Bâ, N.N. Toure Sene, P. Mercenier. Senegal Makes a Move towards the Goals of Alma Ata by Stimulating its Health Districts. World Health Forum, 1989, 10, 3/4: 456-463

[2] Further details in: The Kasongo project. Annales belges de médecine tropicale, 1981, 60, supplément.


Annex 7                                     GRANTS, AWARDS, REVIEWS and MEMBERSHIPS


1982                                  Fulbright/Hays Award (USA)

1982                                  Foundation for Scientific Research and Educational Exchange Award (USA)

1991                                  Rotary Club Antwerpen (Belgium)

                                              1991 Brabo Award 

1990-1991                     Fond National de la Recherche Scientifique (Belgium)

                                              Research fellow grant

2004                                  Eminent Scientist of the Year 2004 International Award

                                              World Scientists Forum and the International Research Promotion Council


2009                                  ITM evaluation

                                              Assessed as ‘excellent’ research unit by the last, international Scientific Advisory Committee evaluating the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp

2010                                  Cambridge University Press publishes a book made inter alia of 14 of our published articles in policy and management. International Health and Aid Policies. Editors: J.-P.Unger, P.De Paepe, K.Sen, W.Soors. Cambridge University Press, 2010 (275 pages).

2012                                  Review of the same book: Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) by David Chinitz, PhD. JAMA. 2012; 308(8): 819-820.

2012                                  Queen Mary, University of London Honorary Senior Research Fellow


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