WHO Collaborating Centre for Training and Research in Occupational Health
The Department of Community Medicine is designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre for Training and Research in Occupational Health. The designation came into effect on 30th July 2012 and the formal ceremony took place on 15 October 2012 by the unveiling of a plaque by Dr. Sanjay Thinley, Director Family Health and Research of WHO/SEARO. The ceremony was attended by Dr. Salma Burton, Dr. Athula Kahandaliyanage, Director for sustainable development and healthy environment of the WHO/SEARO and the WHO Representative to Sri Lanka Dr. Firdosi Rustom Mehta, amidst other officials from the WHO country office, Ministry of Health, Department of Labour and the University of Colombo.
The department and the centre was visited by the former WHO Regional Director for South East Asia, Dr. Samlee Plianbangchang on 8 October 2013. He was received by a formal ceremony held in the Board Room of the Faculty of Medicine, Colombo.
Since the designation, each year the progress made by the centre is submitted online by means of a annual progress report. The last report was submitted for the period 31 July 2013-31 July 2014. The Collaborating Centre is working towards achieving the objectives of the WHO-Global Plan of Action on Workers Health & Global Master Plan (2012-2017).
Typical functions of WHO CCs include:
a) collection and dissemination of information;
b) standardization of terminology and nomenclature, of technology, of diagnostic, therapeutic and prophylactic substances, and of methods and procedures;
c) development of evidence-based technical guidance tools and resource materials on various topics;
d) development and application of appropriate technology;
e) provision of reference substances and other services;
f) participation in collaborative research developed under WHO's leadership, including the planning, conducting, monitoring and evaluation of research; evaluation of WHO interventions in countries; and promotion of the application of the results of research;
g) training, including research training;
h) coordination of activities carried out by several institutions on a given subject;
i) capacity-building work at country level;
j) provision of monitoring, preparedness and response services to deal with disease outbreaks and public health emergencies.
Visitors to the centre during 2014
The WHO Regional Director for South East Asia, Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh who succeeded Dr. Samlee Plianbanchang visited the department and the WHO-CC on 13 June 2014. Dr. Poonam was welcomed by the Dean/FM, Prof. Rohan Jayasekera followed by a formal ceremony held in the Board Room attended by the WR Sri Lanka, other officials from the WHO, Ministry of Health, Department of Labour, Faculty of Medicine and the University of Colombo. The website for the University Community Health Project, Kotte was launched by Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh at this ceremony.
Prof. Arun Chockalingam, Director, Office of Global Health Education and Training, University of Toronto at the invitation of the WHO visited the department and the Centre on 16 September 2014. Presentations were made by representatives who were present from the Rajarata University, Faculty of Medicine, Colombo and Faculty of Medicine, Kelaniya on the public health training conducted by their institutions. Dr. Firdosi Rustom Mehta also attended this meeting. Prof. Chockalingam delivered a guest lecture at the same venue titled, ..........................
A team of officials from Nepal visiting Sri Lanka from 17-23 September 2014 mediated by the WHO and the Ministry of Health visited the department and the WHO-CC. The Director WHO-CC made a presentation on the Community Stream teaching programme and the activities of the WHO-CC.
Farewell to Dr. Firdosi Rustom Mehta
Dr. Firdosi Rustom Mehta, WHO Representative to Sri Lanka was hosted to a informal ceremony held in the Board Room of the Faculty of Medicine, Colombo on the completion of his term of office as the WHO representative in Sri Lanka and on the eve of his departure from Sri Lanka. Prof. Rohini De Alwis Seneviratne, Director WHO-CC and Prof. Wasantha Gunathunga, Head and Professor in Community Medicine spoke in appreciation of the close collaboration he established with the department and his valuable contributions to the activities of the department and the WHO-CC. The Director WHO-CC presented Dr. Mehta with a memento.
Farewell to Dr. Firdosi Rustom Mehta in the faculty Board Room
Nepal team being entertained by the staff of the department- Sep. 2014
Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Director, WHO / SEARO being received by the Director WHO-CC and Head of department on her arrival to the faculty – 13 June 2014
Ceremonial designation of the department as the WHO collaborating centre for
Training and research in occupational health by unveiling of the plaque by Dr.Sanjay Thinley
On 15 October 2012
Visit of Dr. Samlee Plianbangchang on 8 October 2013
And launch of the ‘Industrial Safety Manual’ in the Board Room
Of the faculty