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PQMD Newsletter

Welcome! In this volume of the PQMD newsletter, you will find highlights from our membership and noteworthy articles from around the web. Please note the newsletter is best viewed in your browser. 

Does your organization have news to share? Contact Beth Haynes for placement in future newsletters. 

Note from Elizabeth (EJ) Ashbourne, Executive Director, PQMD
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It is hard to believe that September is ending and that we are already heading into the beginning of Fall. As we move into this new season, I would like to reflect on a couple of the programs that PQMD delivered over the summer, with the help of some new partners, and the contributions these made to continuing to build a multi-sectoral coalition of thought leaders to address critical global problems. We have now moved all our initiatives online, and it is through our learning and knowledge platform, the CoP, that we are able to continue to reach into the highest level of governments, industry, academia and NGOs, to share the experience of our PQMD members and make collective contributions to the biggest challenges facing global health. I am very proud of the partners we have worked with to deliver high-quality, expert-driven webinars.

In June, we held a webinar with our new partner Global Water 2020 to discuss the intersection of WASH and health systems resiliency. The webinar provided a discussion on how the current pandemic has the potential to increase financing for water and sanitation and the clear need to fortify WASH infrastructure through collaboration, coordination and public-private partnerships.

We also partnered with the World Economic Forum (WEF) for our COVID-19 webinar series, and in August, we held a two-part program discussing the critical issues related to a strategy for effective distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Together with the WEF, we invited top experts to participate in the event that provided meaningful dialogue centered on the challenges in the administration of a COVID vaccine. A series of additional webinars with WEF are in the planning, so please keep a lookout for the announcements with dates and times.

A broad multi-sectional coalition must also include a diverse set of partners. On our most recent webinar, Forces Affecting Global Health Security, we had the pleasure of hearing from Professor Dr. Azza Karam, Secretary General of Religions of Peace International and Gabrielle Fitzgerald, CEO of Panorama, an ambitious "action tank" of a broad spectrum of organizations and individuals. We explored the many different definitions and interpretations of global health security, particularly as it applies to systems, disasters, health crisis, pandemics and social justice.

As PQMD moves toward furthering these partnerships and more, I look forward to seeing what is next for us! Enjoy the change of seasons and stay safe.





PQMD Announces the Release of our NEW Online Interactive Guidelines Module

In partnership with Disaster Ready, PQMD has developed our new Quality Medical Product Donation Guidelines module, which provides access to an online, interactive version of the guidelines on any device from anywhere in the world! With this new version of the PQMD Guidelines, users can search from the needed content, download key infographics for on-the-go reference, and test their knowledge of key principles of the Guidelines.

This exciting tool will help product donation professionals and others in the international development field navigate different aspects of product donations. Please help us promote this new, helpful tool through your networks and social media. You can find our social media toolkit here. Additionally, please SAVE THE DATE for our launch event! PQMD will be holding a virtual launch celebration and live demo of the module on Wednesday, October 28th at 11:00 am (EDT). You can register here.  

PQMD Global Health & Development Essentials Course- Next Session Begins October 8th 

PQMD has condensed elements of a Master's in Public Health curriculum to create a comprehensive Executive Survey Course on global development essentials for professionals working with medical product donation programs or other means of international development assistance. PQMD is currently enrolling its next cohort of participants

Sessions begin October 8th and run weekly until November 19th. Space is limited! Register here.  


October is Mental Health Month at PQMD 

October is Mental Health Month at PQMD. Each year, we will focus on mental health in October to coincide with World Mental Health Day on October 10th. This year's World Mental Health Day is focused on increased investment in mental health at national and international levels. The current pandemic has demonstrated the need for mental health resources as many who have not ever struggled with mental health issues have had challenges coping with the disruption, uncertainty, fear, economic strain, family strain, the illness of others and oneself, and the death of loved ones. At the same time, the WHO points out that funding and programs addressing mental health have been declining in recent years. 

Throughout the month, we will have resources on mental health on the CoP (Not signed up? Join us!). Some resources will address individual mental health and wellness and others will highlight activities our member organizations are already involved in or provide suggestions for investing in employee mental health. Look for links to resources, webinars, and other materials that may be of interest to you or your organization. 



Community of Practice (CoP) 


Community of Practice Special COVID-19 Pillar Talk Series 

PQMD COVID-19 Pillar Talk: "Innovation and Urgency in the Health Care Supply Chain in a Time of COVID"- October 29, 2020, 10 AM ET

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the global supply chains. The pressure for medicines, protective equipment, therapeutics, and products to combat both COVID-19 and existing illness and disease will only increase as the pandemic continues and the need for equitable, inclusive, and efficient distribution of all of these for COVID-19 and other diseases needs to be ensured.

PQMD, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum (WEF), is hosting a webinar on October 29, 2020 at 10am where leaders in the fields of healthcare, supply chain and humanitarian services can discuss the current distribution landscape for life-saving medicines, vaccines, and other essential goods in the face of this global pandemic. They will discuss some examples of innovative mobility solutions and discuss novel technologies that can be used to solve for supply system challenges and generate true community value. 

Please look out for registration information coming soon! 


PQMD COVID-19 Pillar Talk on Forces Affecting Global Health Security - Recording Now Available 

 COVID-19 has shown all of us that epidemics develop suddenly and new diseases spread unpredictably in our interconnected world. Infectious diseases do not recognize socioeconomic or geographical boundaries with the potential for significant human suffering and economic impact. The establishment of a global health security agenda attempts to improve national and international capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious diseases by mitigating their impact on human lives and economies.

Within the complexity of an epidemic or pandemic, trusted networks and respected leaders are tasked to deliver timely, dependable, and appropriate messaging and recommendations to the public. These actors have traditionally been national and international governments, agencies, and coordinating bodies. Yet, we are seeing that coordinated actions of key "influencing informers" religious networks, societal influencers, and dependable entrepreneurs also play a critical role in promoting coordinated responses, innovative synergies, and protection for a population- leading to true global health security.

Learn more and view the webinar on the CoP here



PQMD Member News- COVID-19


PQMD Members Responding to COVID-19 Pandemic 

PQMD is continuing to monitor how members are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. All of our members are doing incredible work to assist with this crisis around the world. You can find updates on what PQMD members are doing on the CoP (members only) or the PQMD website. If you have an update you'd like us to include, please send an email to Sam MacDonald at  

Additionally, we can also include fundraising campaigns efforts. Please send to Beth Haynes at 


Anera Responds Quickly and Effectively to the Beirut Explosion
The catastrophic explosion in Beirut on August 4th generated a strong global response. Six hospitals and 20 health clinics suffered structural damage, impacting services for thousands of people and putting additional strain on the still operational healthcare infrastructure to treat the 6,000 people injured. Hundreds of thousands of medicines used to supply health centers across Lebanon were stored at the port and were badly damaged or destroyed by the explosion, leading to acute shortages in critically needed medications and supplies. With the crucial support of international donors, Anera and other organizations on the ground in Lebanon have been at the forefront of the efforts to meet emergency needs. 

Anera is planning up to 20 shipments of medical donations to the country, the first of which arrived in Beirut less than three weeks after the blast and included 56 tons of medicines and medical supplies, donated by Direct Relief and others, and valued at over $12 million. Our initial emergency response focused on replenishing medicines and medical supplies that hospitals used in treating the injured free of charge. The many critical medicines we are our donors have delivered thus far include emergency health kits, would dressings, antibiotics like vancomycin, anesthetics like sevoflurane, chemotherapy drugs like capecitabine, beractant for the treatment of neonatal respiratory distress syndrome, antidiabetics, cardiovascular medicines, analgesics, PPE, disinfectants, and diagnostic equipment. 

Read the full article on the PQMD website here.   

Direct Relief Squadron Flies Aid to Wildfire-Scarred Oregon  

On September 19th, a flying armada organized by volunteer pilots flying private aircraft today delivered 100,000 KN95 respirators from Direct Relief's California-based humanitarian distribution center to residents and firefighters in Oregon's worst-hit fire-zones.

The airlift also includes medications and supplies to treat up to 750 people, including firefighters, for health conditions often associated with wildfire emergencies. Items include inhalers for people with respiratory diseases, antibiotics for dermal and ophthalmic injuries, irrigation solutions, wound care products, and personal protective equipment (PPE) for health workers.

The volunteer pilots from the California Pilots Association Disaster Airlift Response Team (CalDART) and Angel Flights West loaded their planes at Santa Barbara Airport Saturday morning with the Direct Relief-donated materials before departing for Eugene, Oregon, some via secondary staging areas at Northern California airports. 

Read the article on PQMD's website here

Medical Teams International Partners with Becton Dickinson (BD) and Oregon-based Corporations to Provide Hygiene Kits to Wildfire Evacuees 

As massive wildfires continue to claim lives, displace families, and destroy businessed and livelihoods across the western U.S., the non-profit Medical Teams International has partnered with Becton Dickinson and Company (BD) and three Oregonian companies to provide critically needed hygiene supplies. 

Medical Teams is deeply grateful to Becton Dickinson and Company (BD), Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield, A-dec, and Reser's Fine Foods for stepping up to help their neighbors in distress in Oregon. Together, the companies have contributed toward providing 5,000 Compassion Force hygiene kits to evacuees. 

Medical Teams' Compassion Force hygiene kits cost $10 per kit. Each kit provides enough hygiene items for one month, including shampoo, toothpaste, deodorant, floss, bandaids, and a washcloth. Medical Teams will also provide specialized medical equipment (e.g. walkers, nebulizers, diabetes strips, and testers) as requested, while discerning other areas or needed support. The kits will be delivered to United Way's Salem office and distributed to the evacuation centers at Oregon State Fairgrounds and Deschutes County Fairgrounds. 

"We so appreciate our compassionate corporate partners, Becton Dickinson, Regence BlueCross Blueshield of Oregon, A-dec, and Reser's Fine Foods who have come together to help displaced Oregonians," said Debra Hirsh, Medical Teams Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations. "These companies have long-standing relationships with Medical Teams and have a history of responding to needs in our community. In this time of great crisis, they have responded yet again."

Read Medical Teams International's press release on PQMD's website here.  


Preparation for a Pandemic: Sanofi and Medical Teams Collaborate for Long-Lasting, Life-Saving Results 

"The best preparation for tomorrow is to do today's work superbly well," said prominent Canadian physician William Osler more than a century ago. Through its generous commitment of resources, Sanofi Espoir Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the global healthcare leader currently working on a COVID-19 vaccine, has enabled Medical Teams International to live out this truth through its disease preparedness work in Uganda. This pro-active collaboration between Sanofi Espoir Foundation and Medical Teams has reaped benefits in terms of lives protected and saved.

Resources from Sanofi Espoir Foundation helped enable Medical Teams to fight the spread of Ebola in Uganda in 2019 and prepared it to expertly respond to COVID-19 in Uganda, helping to slow its spread. To date, according to the World Health Organization, Uganda, a nation of 45 million people, has had 2,426 cases of COVID-19 and 25 deaths. By contrast, the United States, a nation of 331 million, has had approximately 5.6 million cases and more than 176,000 deaths.

Medical Teams is UNHCR's lead health and nutrition implementing partners in more than 20 refugee settlements and at western border entry and transit centers in Uganda. The organization provides comprehensive primary health and medical screening services to more than one million people, including refugees from Congo, Burundi, South Sudan, as well as hosts Ugandans. Medical Teams works through 70 health facilities, more than 1,600 local staff and a network of more than 1,500 Village Health Teams (VHTs).

Medical Teams, through funding provided by Sanofi Espoir Foundation, was able to mount a significant Ebola virus disease response from February 2019 to May 2020, gaining invaluable learnings and protecting countless refugee children and families. Medical Teams provided medical screenings to more than 55,000 people at 27 Points of Entry along the Uganda-DRC border, trained 522 community volunteers on community-based disease surveillance, and trained 175 health workers on cholera, measles, and hemorrhagic fevers. In addition, Medical Teams supported 20 health facilities in high-risk districts with essential medicines, supplies, including PPE and isolation and screening tents.

In March 2020, Medical Teams began implementing COVID-19 preparedness measures, bolstered by its previous Ebola preparedness work funded by Sanofi Espoir Foundation. Thanks to protocols put in place through this work, staff and volunteers who received training-- and the facilities supported with supplies and structural improvements-- are well-positioned to continue providing high-quality infection prevention and control measures.

Medical Teams Uganda staff are grateful that the impact of COVID-19 has largely been contained in their country, and the organization is committed to continuing to ensure the safety and well-being of its staff and all whom they serve. To read the full article, please visit the PQMD website here.

Highlights From Around the Web



Deadly Malaria and Cholera Outbreaks Grow Amongst Refugees as COVID Pandemic Strains Health Systems

The International Rescue Committee is extremely concerned about the rise of infectious diseases alongside COVID-19. There is an increase in malaria and cholera cases compared to previous years due in part to COVID-related disruptions severely impeding diagnosis and treatment of the diseases, access to relief from floods as well as affordability of mosquito nets. Displaced and refugee families live together in small tents and makeshift homes and are confined together in small spaces without access to proper water, sanitation and hygiene, making the conditions ripe for outbreaks of these diseases as well as contracting COVID-19. The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has been responding to the pandemic as well as the two outbreaks and is now calling for a rapid increase of funding to scale up our response and mitigate disease spread. 

Read the full press release on the International Rescue Committee's website here.  


Covid-19: Debt Service Suspension Initiative 

As In April, the World Bank's Development Committee and the G20 Finance Ministers endorsed the Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) in response to a call by the World Bank and the IMF to grant debt service suspension to the poorest countries to help them manage the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Debt-service suspension with broad and equitable participation is urgently needed to allow low-income countries to concentrate their resources on fighting the pandemic. The G20 called on private creditors to participate in the initiative on comparable terms.

Covid-19 has triggered the deepest global recession since World War II. The main goal of the DSSI is to allow poor countries to concentrate their resources on fighting the pandemic and safeguarding the lives and livelihoods of millions of the most vulnerable people. The IMF and the World Bank are supporting the implementation of the DSSI-- by monitoring spending, enhancing public debt transparency, and ensuring prudent borrowing.

Read more at the World Bank here.


World Economic Forum is Starting The Great Reset Initiative  

There is an urgent need for global stakeholders to cooperate in simultaneously managing the direct consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. To improve the state of the world, the World Economic Forum is starting The Great Reset initiative.

The Covid-19 crisis, and the political, economic, social disruptions it has caused, is fundamentally changing the traditional context for decision-making. The inconsistencies, inadequacies and contradictions of multiple systems- from health and financial to energy and education- are more exposed than ever amidst a global context of concern for lives, livelihoods and the planet. Leaders find themselves at a historic crossroads, managing short-term pressures again medium- and long-term uncertainties. 

As we enter a unique window of opportunity to shape the recovery, this initiative will offer insights to help inform all those determining the future state of global relations, the direction of national economies, the priorities of societies, the nature of business models and the management of a global commons. Drawing from the vision and vast expertise of the leaders engaged across the Forum's communities, the Great Reset initiative has a set of dimensions to build a new social contract that honors the dignity of ever human being.  

Read more about The Great Reset Initiative here.  

Upcoming Events

Women, Peace, and Security in the Age of Covid-19
 October 1, 2020; 10:00am- 11:00am EST 

COVID-19 Vaccine Predictions: Estimating the Time Before We Approve Efficacious COVID-19 Vaccines 
 October 2, 2020; 9am- 10:30am EST 

Financing Low-Income Countries Towards Realistic Aspirations and Concrete Actions in a Post-COVID World 
 October 5-8 2020

Remembering the Forgotten: How Lebanon's Refugee and Other Vulnerable Communities are Coping in Increasingly Dire Circumstances
 October 7, 2020; 10:00am- 12:00pm EST 

Moving Forward: Reimagining How We Invest in Health, Wealth & Aging
 October 7-8, 2020; 11am-1:30pm EST 

World Mental Health Day 2020
 October 10, 2020 

The Pan American Health Organization WASH in Healthcare Facilities Regional Leaders Summit
 October 14, 2020; 10am-12pm EDT 

World Food Day 2020
 October 16, 2020 

PQMD Education Forum/AGM (Members Only) 
October 20-22, 2020

PQMD Guidelines Module Launch Webinar
October 28, 2020: 11 am ET

PQMD COVID-19 Pillar Talk: Innovation and Urgency in the Health Care Supply Chain in a Time of COVID
 October 29, 2020; 10 AM ET





Connect with other PQMD members attending these conferences on our Community of Practice



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