March 2017 | Business View Caribbean

100 101 The Caribbean Public Health Agency T he Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) was legally established in July 2011 by an Inter-Governmen- tal Agreement signed by Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government and began operation in January 2013. It was created by 24 countries and territories in the Caribbean by combining the functions of five Regional Health Institutes (RHIs) into a single agency. They are: The Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI), The Caribbean Epidemi- ology Centre (CAREC), The Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI), The Caribbean Health Research Council (CHRC), and The Caribbean Regional Drug Testing Laboratory (CRDTL). CARPHA brings these RHIs together as one strong force under a public health umbrella un- der which issues requiring a regional response can be addressed. These include: n Emergency responses to disasters (hurri- canes, earthquakes, flooding, volcanoes) and epidemics n The surveillance and management of non-communicable diseases (NDCs) that have reached epidemic proportions such as obesity, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes n The surveillance and management of com- municable diseases (CDs), including HIV/AIDS; re-emerging diseases, like tuberculosis in asso- ciation with HIV/AIDS; and new communicable The Caribbean Making a difference Public Health Agency