Cochrane at the WHO: Department of Reproductive Health and Research’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Group

Blog
Dr Tari Turner at WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Group

'Cochrane at the WHO' is a blog series that highlights the partnership between Cochrane and the World Health Organization. If you would like to share a story about how your Cochrane Group is working with WHO, please contact Emma Thompson, Advocacy and Partnership Officer.

In this blog post Dr Tari Turner from Cochrane Australia talks about the WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Group (STAG) meeting in Geneva.

Could you give a quick introduction to yourself and your work within Cochrane?
I am a Senior Research Fellow at Cochrane Australia where I work on TaskExchange, Living Systematic Reviews and Living Guidelines. I also work on knowledge translation, particularly in maternal and child health in low resource settings, which I really love.

Can you tell us about the WHO process you are involved in?    
STAG provides guidance to the WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research, and the Human Reproduction Programme (HRP). Essentially, the HRP presents their draft workplan for the year, along with key strategic questions about their work or challenges they are facing, and we provide suggestions and advice.

WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Group

What were the key conclusions?
As well as reviewing the 2019 workplan, we discussed the importance of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) within the global focus on universal health coverage, how to ensure effective evidence-based SRH in emergency settings and primary health care, and how implementation research fits within the work of the department. I am particularly interested in this latter bit, and it is so great to be in a room of clever people who get the value and challenges of implementation research, and who are committed to doing it well.

The next step is for HRP to continue with their great work. The STAG meeting is an annual event, so I now step back and watch with great pleasure as HRP achieves great things over the next 12 months.

How has Cochrane evidence impacted on the process?
There is a lot of respect for Cochrane at RHR, which has a close relationship with the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Review Group, and many of the WHO staff have long histories of supporting and authoring Cochrane reviews. Cochrane evidence underpins many of the guidelines that the department produces, and evidence synthesis is core business.

Dr Tari Turner

Being a part of the STAG is a fantastic privilege and I would definitely recommend people take up similar opportunities. It is fascinating – a real learning experience – and great fun.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
Just my huge thanks to WHO and the RHR/HRP team for their fantastic work in these vital areas, and for the opportunity to contribute, it is humbling.

Do you work with WHO?
We would love to hear more about how members of the Cochrane community are working with WHO so that we can help publicise these activities.

Please email Emma Thompson, Cochrane Advocacy and Partnership Officer, and let us know.

 

March 15, 2019

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