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19th Conference on Poverty and Health – Germany’s Public Health Conference

by Christopher Ellis, GIZ

Over 2,000 participants gathered last March 13th and 14th, 2014, for the annual German public health conference “Poverty and Health” (Kongress Armut und Gesundheit) held on the campus of the Technical University of Berlin. Presented by a group of prominent public health institutions, the conference presented over 90 lectures, workshops, and exhibitions as part of a comprehensive program covering a wide spectrum of diverse themes.

This year’s conference once again addressed health equity for people in difficult circumstances, this time under the banner of sustainability. Sir Michael Marmot of the UCL Institute of Health Equity in London kicked off the discussion with his keynote address, “Fair Society, Healthy Lives”. At the core of the debate were questions over which structures, processes, and results could lead to positive long-term, stable results: which conditions lead to such results in health promotion and prevention? Which existing strategies and concepts can be drawn upon? And what relationship exists between sustainable structures, living conditions, and long-term behavioural change?

Central themes of the congress included early childhood care, immigration, unemployment, health economics and health promotion, as well as a wide range of action areas in the field (e.g. HIV/AIDS, patient care, etc.). In addition to lectures and workshops, participants also had the opportunity to gain an overview of the German public health landscape through photo exhibits and film screenings. International themes were also addressed through a global lecture series, exploring the federal German position on global health, new United Nations development goals, and recent interventions in the global right to healthcare.

You can learn more about the conference (in German) here:

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