The International Training and Education Center for Health (I-TECH) made UW history when its country offices in Haiti and India transitioned into independent organizations. This is the first time a UW-led organization has transitioned into an international one that is locally owned.
I-TECH, a center in UW’s Department of Global Health, aims to strengthen health systems, as well as boost prevention, care, and treatment of infectious diseases, particularly HIV, around the globe. I-TECH recently took a major step forward by successfully transitioning two of its offices – in Haiti and India – to become locally owned independent organizations.
“I-TECH’s goal is to strengthen local capacity and to help build sustainable health systems through programs that are tailored to be absorbed into national systems,” says Dr. Ann Downer, I-TECH Executive Director and Professor in the UW Department of Global Health.
Dr. Jean-Guy Honoré, Executive Director of CHARESS (formerly I-TECH’s Haiti office), says “Our health information systems work, in particular, has had a real impact in Haiti, and our new local status will allow CHARESS to pursue even more opportunities to become a global leader.”
“This really opens doors to new things,” says Dr. Anwar Parvez Sayed, Clinical Programs Director for I-TECH India. “We were previously looked at as a foreign entity, and we can now apply for local grants.”
The transition is based on the concept that long-term, sustainable achievements in development requires local people to be the drivers of change. To this end, I-TECH works with local partners to develop skilled health care workers and strong national health systems in resource-limited countries.