Violence and injury prevention experts meet in the Republic of Moldova

Andrei Mardari

Experts in violence and injury prevention met in Chisinau on 11-12 November 2015.

50 participants from 33 countries attended the Eighth Network Meeting of European Ministry of Health Violence and Injury Prevention focal points on 11–12 November in Chisinau, Republic of Moldova.

Dr Gheroghe Turcanu, Deputy Minister of Health of the Republic of Moldova, welcomed participants. He stressed the impact of injuries and violence as a cause of premature mortality in the country and integration of prevention strategies into the national health-for-all policy.

The purposes of the meeting, organized by WHO/Europe were: 

  • to discuss implementation of "Investing in children: the European child maltreatment prevention action plan", 
  • to consider the results of the global status report on road safety 2015 and the global status report on violence prevention 2014, 
  • to discuss global policy directions in the light of the Sustainable Development Goals and 
  • to exchange experience in preventing violence and injury.

Focus on child development and reducing road traffic crash deaths

Professor Mark Bellis, focal point from the United Kingdom, gave a keynote presentation on the far-reaching impact of adverse childhood experiences throughout the life-course. He said that investing in child development and resilience would have sustainable benefits in all the sectors.

Dr Dinesh Sethi from WHO/Europe presented the report "European facts and global status report on road safety 2015". He reported an 8.1% decrease in mortality due to road crashes between 2010 and 2013; however, he emphasized that countries would have to make renewed efforts if the global target of a 50% decrease in mortality by 2020 is to be achieved.

Dr Tatiana Zatic, Director of the Primary Health Care Department at the Ministry of Health, described the burden of injuries and violence in the Republic of Moldova. She said that Health 2020 was being used as a framework for health-in-all policies to mount a multi-sectoral response.  

Dr David Meddings from WHO headquarters spoke about the future global direction of violence and injury prevention in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals. He emphasized the opportunity that the Goals present for involving other sectors in reducing the burden of injuries and violence.

Data collection and country experiences

Dr Sethi thanked the focal points and national data coordinators for their work in data collection and validation for the global status reports on road safety in 2013 and 2015 and the 2014 global status report on violence prevention.

Focal points shared their country experiences in presentations and during a debate on the themes of road safety, child injury prevention, capacity-building and violence prevention. This was followed by panel discussions on the way forward for the network in implementing the European child maltreatment prevention action plan.