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The Awards for Excellence in Inter-American Public Health Program

Each year, the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF)/Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Awards for Excellence in Inter-American Public Health Program recognizes innovative individuals, programs, institutions, and organizations advancing health in the Americas, especially in Latin America and the Caribbean. The Program consists of six awards that highlight key aspects of public health as a way to stimulate the growth of the next and rising generation of leaders working together to improve health and health care in the Americas.

Initially established in 1975, these awards have become known throughout the Americas as prestigious honors and career milestones, and a unique opportunity to help bring recognition to those who have dedicated their careers to improving public health in the Western Hemisphere.

For each award, an independent jury of distinguished public health professionals, peers, and academics, who are appointed by PAHO and PAHEF, is convened to review the nominations and recommend a winning candidate to the PAHEF board of directors for approval. Each award includes a cash prize or research grant, certificate of honor and, a symbolic representation of the award. The cash prizes or research grants are funded by either family members of the person for whom the award is named, by governments, or by PAHEF general funds. Additionally, although not always the case, awardees have been previously invited to Washington, DC, to be recognized during an evening event held during the week of the PAHO Directing Council Meeting, in the presence of dignitaries, including ministers of health from throughout the Americas, OAS ambassadors, U.S. government officials, and private sector representatives who provide support to the event. Some awardees also have been recognized before the delegates to the PAHO Directing Council Meeting.

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A Sample of Recent PAHEF Projects in the Region