Learning about Slovenian public health reforms
21 July 2015

A high-level delegation from the Republic of Moldova visited Slovenia on 16–20 May 2015 to learn about the functions of the main Slovenian public health services and institutions that prevent and control public health threats. The study visit was organized by the WHO country offices in Slovenia and the Republic of Moldova.

The delegation from the Republic of Moldova comprised the Head and members of the Parliamentary Committee for Social Protection, Health and Family; the Deputy Minister of Health; and representatives of the Ministry of Health, the National Center for Public Health, the School of Public Health Management, Chisinau Public Health Center, Comrat Public Health Center, and the Trade Union of Health Protection Workers. Representatives of the Moldovan Parliament were received by Mr Tomaž Gantar, the President of the Parliamentary Committee on Health at the National Assembly of Slovenia.

The Moldovan officials were familiarized with:

  • the Slovenian model of delivery of essential public health operations;
  • the main responsibilities and activities of the Public Health Directorate of the Ministry of Health of Slovenia;
  • the role and main functions of the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Slovenia and its branches, and its collaboration with the Ministry of Health and other sectors; and
  • the role and functions of the Health Inspectorate of the Republic of Slovenia, and the National Laboratory of Health, Environment and Food (NLZOH).

The working agenda included meetings in Ljubljana and Maribor at the Slovenian Ministry of Health, the National Assembly, the Institute of Public Health, the Health Inspectorate of the Republic of Slovenia, NLZOH and the Public Health Unit in Maribor.

Mrs Oxana Domenti, Chair of the Parliamentary Committee for Social Protection, Health and Family stressed, "The public health sector of the Republic of Moldova needs a new and innovative perspective to keep its current strengths in prevention and control of communicable diseases, and to build capacities in health promotion and the prevention of noncommunicable diseases, as well as in the assessment of population health."


Public health sector reform in the Republic of Moldova began in 2014, based on an assessment of the essential public health functions, the development and adoption of a national public health strategy 2014–2020 and an action plan on public health. In addition, a laboratory reform was initiated to streamline services and improve the efficiency of the services infrastructure. The Republic of Moldova faces population health challenges as many other European Member States. These include a high burden of diseases through rising prevalence of noncommunicable diseases, in particular cardiovascular and cancer diseases, leading to premature mortality and morbidity. At the same time, incidence and prevalence of some communicable diseases remain a concern; yet there is scope for improving health indicators for specific population groups.

The study visit is part of the activities envisaged under the biennial collaborative agreement between WHO/Europe and the WHO/Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation project on support to strengthening governance and policy dialogue in the health sector.

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