Dear members, colleagues, and friends of PQMD,
As we approach the holidays, we want to take a few moments to reflect on the past year. It has also meant another year of tremendous work and partnerships by all of our PQMD members. We continue to be encouraged that no matter the situation, our members are committed to responding and providing needed aid, healthcare, and medicines to vulnerable populations across the globe.
PQMD has had a very productive year, kicking off with our 2019 Global Health Policy Forum, in Geneva, Switzerland. Members, participants, and staff galvanized cross-sectoral collective action by examining and challenging our current understanding of resilient and inclusive health systems, governance models, disaster response and pandemics all through the lens of product donations. The Forum highlighted the importance of innovation and systems thinking in an era of collaborative transformation to meet the challenges of global health governance & accountability to better define and measure health outcomes.
Gaining exciting momentum in 2019, the PQMD Community of Practice continues to provide a dedicated space for members, colleagues, and the global community to engage in peer interest groups to discuss and dissect key policy issues. The CoP has been re-energized over the past six months. Informative calls with members and workshopping content together at our annual education forum has led to the creation of new networking spaces for committees and PQMD members on the CoP. Working at a high-level, PQMD developed an “integrated activity plan” to guide PQMD thematic activity. Next year will bring timely discussions, deeper exploration of member-informed content and a series of Pillar Talks to inspire and inform your work.
Also this year, PQMD has been able to build on our years of research and studies around metrics and measurement, pulling it all under the umbrella of what we are calling “Measuring for Success (MfS).” We are in the final stages of a new toolkit and an MfS website that will give members, partners and our colleagues beyond, the ability to develop and implement impact measurement activities around their projects and programs. Additionally, in December, we launched an exciting new initiative “Spotlight on Hygiene Kits” which created a collective impact coalition that will focus on the effectiveness of hygiene kits for disasters and short term emergencies. The group will be designing an evaluation framework that reflects the significance of hygiene kits from multiple perspectives and in 2020, will be publishing the methods and tools so others can take advantage of the work and expertise.
Our Guidelines have also seen some exciting new activities. Based on demand from our members and partners, PQMD is developing a “self-certification” process that we are hoping will demonstrate excellence in our donation practices and provide discussion opportunities for individual organizations and between members on how to do even better. We also have seen the integration of our Medical Mission Guidelines into our core products, bringing along with it the expert working group and a commitment to a scheduled annual review for the purpose of continued improvement and application.
Our full membership had the chance to spend several days together at our October Annual General Meeting in Kansas City, generously hosted by Heart to Heart International. The opportunity to learn from each other at these educational forums is key to the foundation of our organization, and we cherish the time spent together and lessons we continue to learn.
PQMD is also very excited to be in the process of developing a course on the Essentials in Global Health for Medical Product Donation Professionals to be launched in January 2020. This will be an opportunity to provide a forum for continued learning for members, colleagues, partners and eventually the larger development and global community.
As we bring 2019 to a close, our staff is already hard at work with members to plan our 2020 Global Health Policy Forum. Set to take place April 21-23 in New York, we look forward to building on the conversations and inquiries brought forth by previous meetings, and focusing on game changers in global medical donations and diving into strategies to put “policy in action.” We would love to have you join us as the program develops, and encourage you to contact us so we may keep you updated as details are finalized.
And finally, thank you to each of our members, colleagues and friends who all make PQMD what it is. Every day, individually and collectively, we are able to say that we are making a difference. Without question, we are making it a healthier and happier world. Thank you for your input, your engagement, your time, and your support, always. The collective effort of the resulting large scale donations and partnerships over the past year have led to significantly more access to medical products and health services for those we all seek to serve, which represents the true core mission of PQMD as well as our members and partners.
We wish you and yours the very best holidays for 2019, and look forward to exciting things to come in 2020!
All our best,
Elizabeth “EJ” Ashbourne & the PQMD Staff