Advancing Together Towards Global Health

[This text has been written by Francisco Saúte, Director General of CISM and, Antoni Plasència, Director General of ISGlobal. This blog post is a one of a series of articles to commemorate the 25th anniversary of CISM].

Mopeia inquirers team

With the dawn of the new year, our celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Manhiça Health Research Centre (CISM) has drawn to a close. After rereading all the articles published in this series, we are proud to see that the relationship of cooperation, exchange and friendship that began a quarter of a century ago has continued to grow and gain strength ever since.

The governments of Spain and Mozambique joined forces in 1996 to lay the groundwork for what would become CISM; in turn, CISM was instrumental in the evolution of the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal). Since then, we have advanced together along the path of global health with a single objective: finding solutions to the health inequalities that affect the planet’s most vulnerable populations. With a model of equitable partnership and mutual exchange, a shared scientific agenda, and a two-way academic programme involving the University of Barcelona and Eduardo Mondlane University, we have put into practice the African proverb that has guided and inspired us from the outset: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. And indeed, we have come a long way.

The fruits of this long-standing strategic partnership are many. The scientific evidence generated by our research teams has contributed to the development of health policies that have saved thousands of lives in Mozambique

To give just a couple of examples, CISM produced the necessary evidence for the inclusion of meningitis, pneumonia and diarrhoea vaccines in Mozambique’s Expanded Programme on Immunisation —which has had a huge impact on the number of lives saved—and data generated by our teams have shed light on the importance of tuberculosis as a cause of death in the country.

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine is yet another very significant case. The Government of Mozambique recently announced a nationwide rollout of this vaccine, which will help to improve the health and lives of thousands of women in the coming years. The role of CISM and