Actions, he said, should be aimed at strengthening human resources for health in order to achieve resilient systems, promote decent working conditions for health workers and to support countries in developing domestic policies and plans, as well as regulatory mechanisms for the management of health professionals.
Barbosa called for stepping up efforts to improve mental health and suicide prevention, through an intersectoral approach based on equity and human rights.
He also called for preventing and controlling noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in children, adolescents and young people, by strengthening surveillance and primary health care services for detection, diagnosis and treatment at an early age.
PAHO’s 60th Directing Council recently approved the Elimination Initiative, which seeks to put an end to more than 30 NCDs and related conditions in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The PAHO director pointed out that NCDs continue to be the leading cause of ill health, disability and death in the Americas region and account for 81% of overall mortality.