The Public Health Institute of Malawi (PHIM) was established in 2013 under the Ministry of Health to provide leadership in disease surveillance, research, prevention and control as well as generate evidence that informs policy and practice in public health service delivery. In this respect, the institute is building the capacity of the country to effectively respond and deal with public health challenges such as emerging communicable and non-communicable diseases.
Three units constitute PHIM and these are the Epidemiology Unit- responsible for disease surveillance, implementation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) and outbreak investigation as well as response in collaboration with the reference lab; The Research Unit- provides support and direction on essential health research; and finally the National Reference Laboratory- that is responsible for public health laboratory services in the country.
A centre of excellence in public health that contributes towards quality and productive life of all people in Malawi.
To provide national leadership and coordination in multidisciplinary surveillance, prevention and control of diseases, health conditions and threats as well as to generate information that informs policy and practice in public health
A well equipped, resourced and staffed Public Health Institute that effectively responds to pandemic and emerging disease conditions thereby improving health and wellbeing of Malawi.
PHIM Core Values
PHIM will create a welcoming environment; interacting with all partners and stakeholders regardless of gender, religion, sexual orientation and other individual characteristics. Within the varied professions, PHIM will promote participation of all in working towards achievement of the strategic goals and objectives. PHIM’s reputation is entrenched in its core values. The Institute will be consistent with these values and will not waiver due to contrary internal and external influences but will stand strong in what it believes should be done to realise its vision and mission. PHIM will be ethical in all its undertakings and will do the right thing, in the right way, at the right time and for the right reason (s). The values are implied in the mission statement above and are hereby summarized:
Excellence: Strive for evidence based practice, competency, continuous improvement, adaptability and flexibility in all functions and activities.
Integrity: Strive for honesty, truthfulness, credibility, and sincerity
Accountability and Transparency: Endeavour for openness, liability, in fiscal and social responsibility
Confidentiality: Believe in privacy and discretion in the performance of duty, in accordance with applicable regulations and laws of the country.
Professionalism: Demonstrate expertise, proficiency, and promote team work.
Equity: Believe in justice and fairness to all.
PHIM is implementing Ministry of Health strategic goals that affect public health in partnership with other agencies, departments and the development community. Amongst the most notable partners is the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) that has since 2008 supported PHIM in its establishment and is now offering technical support for the strengthening of the IHR (2005). Through this partnership, NIPH has seconded two members of staff to the institute through the Norwegian Church Aid boosting PHIM’s communications, visibility and surveillance.
International Training and Education Center for Health (I-TECH), with support from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is supporting PHIM to advance epidemiological capacity in the Ministries of Health and Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development by training health professionals in basic field epidemiology through the Frontline Field Epidemiology Training Programme (FETP-Frontline). I-TECH is also supporting the institution in the process of devolving into a semi-autonomous institution.