A national health research-to-policy workshop was held in June 2011 to discuss strategies for optimizing the utilization of results emanating from research-for health activities for policy development and practice. Over a hundred participants, drawn from the health research community, representatives of research and teaching institutions, policy makers, NGOs and funders engaged in health related activities in Kenya, congregated in Nairobi for the two day event. The meeting was opened by the Acting Minister for Higher Education, Science and Technology, Prof. Hellen Sambili; EGH, MP, and attended by representatives from Uganda, Tanzania and Malawi. Professor Wen Kilama, the Managing Trustee of the African Malaria Network Trust (AMANET), delivered the keynote presentation.
From a broad perspective of research-for-health, the meeting examined barriers and constraints that impede health research in Kenya from attaining the goals set outin Vision 2030, as well as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), ranging from research regulation, research priority setting and knowledge sharing. Throughout the workshop ample opportunities were provided for interactive discussions.
The meeting was convened and co-hosted by the Consortium for National Health Research (CNHR) in collaboration with the National Council for Science and Technology (NCST). At the end of the two-day event, the workshop participants were able to agree on some major recommendations. The workshop also requested that the dialogue fora be held more regularly under the aegis of CNHR/NCST. In addition, the workshop suggested the formation of a follow-up committee that would ensure that the recommendations would be acted upon, and progress reported at the next workshop.