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Latin American and Caribbean Center On Health Sciences Information
Pan American Health Organization | World Health Organization

VHL News Network

October 2008

Newsletter VHL 084 24/October/2008

ISSN 1809-6859

Positive results and bright outlook mark the celebration of the VHL 10th anniversary

The VHL5 (5th Regional Coordination Meeting of the Virtual Health Library) held in Rio de Janeiro, on September 14-16, 2008, had over 500 representatives from 55 countries related to the VHL network, in addition to professionals and authorities of national and international agencies. The broad representativeness, together with a program based on current and relevant topics, confirmed the positive evaluation of the VHL, enabled sharing experiences, learned lessons and challenges, and renewed the cooperation commitments for the collective construction of the VHL as a public asset
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CRICS8: converging innovation in information, knowledge and health

The eighth edition of the Regional Congress on Health Sciences Information (CRICS8) - held in the Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on September 16-19, 2008 - addressed the core theme of information and scientific knowledge as innovation agent in health. The results reassure the CRICS as one of the most important international congresses of information and scientific communication in health. The event was organized by the FIOCRUZ/Ministry of Health of Brazil and the BIREME/PAHO/WHO, and gathered over 800 participants who took advantage of the scientific program with more than 30 conferences and over 20 refreshment courses
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Director of the PAHO/WHO highlights the innovative role of the VHL

Once again the support and the presence of the board of the PAHO stood out at the Regional Coordination Meeting of the VHL and at the CRICS with highlight to the speeches of the Director, Mirta Roses Periago, addressing the advances and challenges of public health in the Region, molded in the Health Agenda for the Americas, pointing out the critical and innovative role of the VHL in the management of information and exchange of scientific knowledge on health
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The VHL and the Social Determinants of Health (SDH)

The Social Determinants of Health (SDH) were widely discussed in the events VHL5 and CRICS8, driven by the launching of the final reports by the WHO Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH) and the Brazilian National Commission (CNDSS). The reports aim to raise awareness about the importance of the SDH in health of populations. The interventions proposed concern the economic, social and cultural macrostructure; living and working conditions; and promotion of healthy individual behaviors. These interventions must be based on information and scientific evidence, supported by information products and services provided by the VHL
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World congress points major changes in the future development of the ISIS

The 3rd World Meeting of ISIS Users (ISIS3) was held in Rio de Janeiro, on September 14-16, 2008, and gathered over 150 participants from 31 countries. The event was organized by the BIREME/PAHO/WHO and set a landmark in the history of the ISIS family by launching new systems; approving a new modus operandi to develop the ISIS family, which is based on Free and Open Source Software (FOSS); and by establishing an international commission to strengthen self-organization of the community of ISIS users
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Augmenting human intellect through the Web: utopia or reality

The Internet poses us between the desire to keep the web independent and the risks of lacking control of published information. In the field of health there are limitations in assessing quality of contents. Moreover, there are few sources of information based on scientific evidence, and even less sources that take into account the context in which patients will make decision about their care or that include more vulnerable population groups. The same technologies that lead to these concerning perspectives may - based on common sense and networking- contribute to finding solutions that help us distinguish between what is reliable or not
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