Keynote Speakers

Dr Agnès Soucat - Director for Health Systems Governance and Financing at the World Health Organization

Dr Agnès Soucat is the Director for Health Systems Governance and Financing at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland.
Before joining WHO, she was Global Leader Service Delivery and Lead Economist at the World Bank. She previously was the Director for Human Development for the African Development Bank, where she was responsible for health, education, social protection and jobs for Africa, including 54 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and the Maghreb. She has over 25 years of experience in health and poverty reduction, covering more than 70 countries in Africa, Asia and Europe.
She was a pioneer of several innovations in health care financing including community based financing and performance based financing and  authored seminal publications on these topics.   She is also the co-author of the World Development Report 2004 “Making Services Work for Poor People” and of the Lancet Commission report “Global Health 2035: a world converging within a generation”. She was commissioner of the recent Lancet and Rockefeller Commission on Planetary Health.  Dr Soucat did also extensive work on the health labor market dynamics in Africa. Dr Soucat holds an MD and a Masters in Nutrition from the University of Nancy in France as well as a Master of Public Health and Ph.D in Health Economics from the Johns Hopkins University.

Guadalupe Silvia García de la Torre, MD, MS

Dr. Guadalupe Silvia García de la Torre is a medical doctor graduating from the Facultad de Medicina de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México UNAM (National Autonomous University of Mexico) with a Master’s degree in Sociomedical Science with an emphasis on Epidemiology. She has collaborated with the School of Medicine for 31 years in teaching and research.

She is currently the Head of the Public Health Department of the School of Medicine of the UNAM, professor at the undergraduate and postgraduate level (Masters and Doctoral programs in epidemiology), and head of the disciplinary field of Epidemiology from the Master’s and Doctoral Program in Medical, Dental and Health Sciences, from UNAM.

Her research has an epidemiological focus on different topics of importance for public health, such as chagas disease, sexual transmitted infections, violence, diabetes mellitus type 2, life style, and health in the working population.

She is chairman of the Research Committee of the General Directorate of Epidemiology of the Ministry of Health of Mexico.

María del Rocío Sáenz Madrigal, MPH, MD

Dr. María del Rocío Sáenz Madrigal is a Costa Rican medical doctor at Universidad La Salle, México, D.F and public health specialist. Former Executive President of Costa Rican Social Security Fund 2014-2017 (CCSS). Former Minister of Health of Costa Rica and Coordinator of the Social Council (2002-2006). Member of PAHO/WHO Health Emergency Response Team with emphasis on Central America, with main functions related to support and assist in the re-establishment of basic health services including water, sanitation and primary health care, and its corresponding evaluation.

Work experience in primary health as Coronado Health Area Director (1983 and 1990), a period which she also served as coordinator of the Nicaraguan refugee camp. Between 1998 and 2002 was the director of Planning of the Ministry of Health of Costa Rica, where she performed functions of planning, programming, evaluation of programs and projects in health, with emphasis on the social area. As Minister of Health she consolidated the reform process initiated in the 90s clarifying functions between regulation and the provision of health services; promoting the role of the Ministry on research and technological development in health; and assuming responsibilities in modulating the financing of health system in Costa Rica.

Dr. Saenz has worked as an academic in undergraduate and graduate programs of the School of Medicine and School of Public Health at the University of Costa Rica. She has published 42 technical papers and 16 scientific papers, most of them related to health promotion, health policy, and health systems. She currently chairs the Executive Committee of the American Network for Health Equity (HENA/RAES) , as well as the Alianza Latianoamericana en Salud Global.

Osvaldo Artaza Barrios, MD, MHA

Dr. Osvaldo Artaza Barrios is a pediatrician with a Master in Health Administration. He is the Former Health Minister of Chile, a Professor of Public Health Universidad Austral de Chile, and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences of the University of Las Americas. 

Hospital Management

As a hospital manager, he led the change process in an emblematic Chilean hospital and was one of the protagonist of the Chilean hospital transformation of the last decades (implementation of self-management in health network, compliance with explicit guarantees in health, accreditation in quality of care processes, etc.) His experience was consolidated in numerous books and articles and his influence in hospital management and Integrated Health Services Networks has spread to many Latin American countries. Extensive experience and knowledge in hospital governance and integrated networks, clinical management, quality accreditation processes, explicit guarantees in health and human resources for health.

Former Health Minister (CHILE) International Consultant in Health Public Policies

As a designer of public policies, he was responsible for leading programmatic technical teams of two government teams in Chile and therefore played an important role in the changes in the Chilean health system. As Minister of Health of President Ricardo Lagos Escobar had to promote the design, negotiation and approval by the Chamber of Deputies of the broadest and most ambitious reform package that Chile has had in health in recent decades.

As an advisor to the Andean Health Organization (Hipólito Unanue agreement) for several years, he had to collaborate in the political processes in health of all the Andean countries, especially Peru and Colombia. In Peru he participated actively in the pact of political parties for universal insurance, in the creation of the SIS, the Universal Insurance Plan and in the last reform process. In Colombia he participated in multiple activities aimed at the evaluation and improvement of Law 100 and the health system of Colombia, maintaining excellent networks with the political world, provider and academician of several countries of America.

PAHO/WHO Advisor
As an HSS advisor in Mexico, he has been responsible for collaborating in the design of a new technical cooperation agreement between the representation and the government of Mexico with strong emphasis on HSS goals and its main achievements have been the design of a new Integrated Care Model structured in Integrated Health Services Delivery Networks and based on Primary Health Care (PHC); contribution to the governance of the health sector leading the process of generating consensus among relevant actors for universal access; strengthening of the rectory in a highly fragmented and segmented system; the creation of a new regulatory framework for quality; the strengthening of access to cost-effective and safe medicines and their regulatory capacity; and a change of view before the human resources in health that has been translated in evaluation of Human Resources for health (HRH) gaps with respect to inequity in health and to initiate adjustments of formation and distribution HRH for PHC. As an HSS Advisor in Argentina, he has been responsible for-among other projects under execution-coordinating the execution of a hospital equipment project; technically support the creation of the national technology assessment agency (currently in parliamentary approval); the change of the model of hospital accreditation, and participate in the proposal of transformation model of care in Buenos Aires city and change of hospital management model in the province of Santa Fe.

Associate Professor, School of Public Health, University of Chile and the Institute of Health Administration, Faculty of Economics and Administration, University of Chile.
He has participated as a guest lecturer at ESAN University Lima Peru (Master in Health Administration); San Marcos University of Lima Peru (Specialty in Health Administration); Institute of Public Health of the Andrés Bello University; Autonomous Metropolitan University of Mexico -UAM Xochimilco-; National Autonomous University of Mexico-UNAM-; Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos; National Institute of Public Health of Mexico; ISALUD University; and at the University of Buenos Aires. Currently Assistant Professor of the Institute of Public Health of the Austral University of Valdivia and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences of the University of Las Americas.