March 2021 Global Health Update

March 2021

COVID-19 has exposed the weaknesses within our social, political and economic systems. It has also shone a spotlight on the stark inequalities that exist within and between countries which undermine global health and threaten progress toward vaccine coverage, let alone Universal Health Coverage. This update includes several resources around vaccine equity, including a new resource from the Vatican's COVID-19 Commission, a commission created by the Pope.

This month we also noted International Women's Day on March 8 and will recognize World Water Day on March 22.


CHA Global Health Networking Zoom Calls
CHA quarterly convenes leaders of global health programs in Catholic health care, partner organizations and non-governmental and governmental organizations to share information and talk about timely issues in global health. If you have a program topic you would like to highlight (5 minutes) or open for group discussion, please be sure to email me directly or speak up during the open forum during these gatherings.

Old Age: Our Future – The elderly after pandemic
Four Part Webinar Series – Next Session March 24

Co-sponsored by CHA, the Community of Sant'Egidio and Catholic Charities USA, this free series will open a conversation about this new Vatican document and stretch thinking on possibilities for how we can innovate to meet the critical needs of our growing elderly population.

» Learn more and register
Virtual Assembly 2021 – All God's Children
June 14 - 15
Save the date for this two-day virtual event that will provide engaging opportunities to interact with speakers, connect personally with colleagues and create new friendships. CHA is also seeking innovative ideas that highlight creative approaches to the challenges and opportunities before us.

» Learn more


USAID Request for Applications for Grant
The USAID American Schools and Hospitals Abroad annual solicitation makes possible awards to U.S. organizations that partner with in-country Overseas Institutions (OIs) to share American technologies, practices, expertise, and values in support of the USG's public diplomacy and development missions. The awards support the provision of equipment and/or the construction or renovation of health, education, or library facilities to improve services to communities. Applications are now due by 4/23/2021 at 4 p.m. ET. You can find out more by visiting the USAID ASHA Website.
Vatican COVID-19 Commissions - Resources for Church Leaders
A first step in our journey toward a more just, inclusive and equitable world is making COVID-19 vaccines available and accessible to all, as outlined in the December 2019 paper, Vaccine for all: 20 points for a fairer and healthier world, published by the Vatican COVID-19 Commission and the Pontifical Academy for Life. The following resources are designed to support parish priests and staff in diocesan offices and health and social service agencies. You will find information about the COVID-19 vaccine for varied audiences, resources to support the preparation of homilies, relevant quotes from Pope Francis, links to useful information, and short messages for websites, parish bulletins or other media. A Family Guide to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is designed to help local communities and to counter misinformation.
» Download the resources
CHA Video Reflection World for Water Day, March 22, 2021
On World Water Day, let us lift our voices in prayer for all persons who live with the scarcity of water. This video reflection can provide an opportunity for prayerful reflection on the needs of so many in our world today as we ask our loving God to provide us guidance on how to be better stewards of this finite resource.
» View a video reflection on water
Vatican's Dicastery for Integral Human Development – Initiative on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Health Care Facilities (WASH in HCF)
The Vatican's Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development is leading an initiative to improve WASH conditions in healthcare facilities, with an initial focus on 150 Catholic healthcare facilities in 24 countries. CHA will be taking part in a Donor and Partners Conference later this month when the Dicastery will gather donors and partners to support action for WASH improvements in these facilities, along with wider support for all Catholic healthcare facilities in low-resource settings across the world. If you have interest or take part in the following:
  • funding WASH improvements in these 150 Catholic facilities;
  • are already working to improve WASH in HCFs;
  • future plans include improving basic WASH in Catholic HCF in low-resource settings;
  • are currently taking inspiring steps, with your local resources, to address WASH conditions in your own facility
Please feel free to email me directly.
CHA's 5th Anniversary Edition – Guiding Principles for Global Health Activities
2020 marks the 5th anniversary of this CHA resource that offers Catholic health ministry leaders and others who participate in global health projects six Guiding Principles for Conducting Global Health Activities.

Offering a new pandemic inspired parable, as well as the unchanged Modern Day Parable and Guiding Principles, this updated edition brings to life the richness of Catholic social teaching and tradition and inspires excellence and partnership in global health activities.

» Download a PDF of the booklet
» Watch the video – Parable for Pandemic, as included in the 5th Anniversary Edition

Renewing Relationship –
Essays as We Evolve and Emerge from Pandemic

CHA has curated a set of essays from highly-regarded theologians and public health experts to set the stage for collective consideration of how the complexities and challenges of the pandemic have created an opportunity for us to rethink, reset and renew our global health relationships.

While COVID-19 and the isolation we have experienced creates many questions, it can also provide us with renewed hope and inspiration to do it better in future global health partnerships. We hope you will take this time "apart" to reflect on future opportunities to be brother and sister to our global neighbors.

WHO Twinning Partnerships for Improvement
Twinning Partnerships for Improvement (TPI) supports long-term efforts on quality of care. This is important in achieving Universal Health Coverage and resilient health systems.

The TPI model is based on a 6-step cycle which begins when two partners agree on the establishment of the partnership. TPI then guides the partners through a systematic process to set the areas for improvement, develop an action plan and then evaluate the activities conducted.
» Access the TPI resources

WHO Guidance for Coronavirus Disease
WHO Coronavirus (COVID-19) Dashboard Globally, as of March 8, 2021, there have been 116,521,281 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 2,589,548 deaths, reported to the World Health Organization (WHO). At the same time a total of 349,398,520 vaccine doses have been administered. This dashboard allows you to see the distribution of cases and vaccines by country.
» View the WHO's Coronavirus dashboard

CHA is a Resource for You
Please note as you connect with partners, discuss missed medical trips or added surplus shipments, conduct online education or even make future plans, that you can feel free to share any information or insights you gain with me at [email protected]. If I can provide assistance or additional information, please feel free to contact me.

CHA is a resource for you
Please note, as you connect with partners, discuss missed medical trips or added surplus shipments, online education or even future plans, feel free to share any information or insights you gain with me. If I can provide assistance or additional information, please feel free to contact me.

Bruce Compton
Senior Director, Global Health
Catholic Health Association of the United States