Healthcare Information For All

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Healthcare Information For All (HIFA)
HIFA logo.jpg
Type Global Knowledge Network
Headquarters Charlbury, Oxford, UK
Dr. Neil Pakenham-Walsh
Website Official website

Healthcare Information For All (HIFA) is a global network of health professionals, publishers, librarians, technologists, researchers, and policymakers. Formerly known as HIFA2015 (Healthcare Information For All by 2015), the network was rebranded as HIFA in 2014. They have over 14,000 members from 2500 separate organisations in 175 countries worldwide.[1][2]

HIFA was formally launched in October 2006 at the 10th Congress of the Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa in Mombasa, Kenya.[2] The network is administered by the Global Healthcare Information Network, a nonprofit organisation based in the United Kingdom. Universal and user-friendly access to relevant, reliable health information is considered a vital part of meeting the World Health Organization's goal of Health For All and the United Nation's Millennium Development Goals and Sustainable Development Goals.[3]


The HIFA vision is: "A world where every person and every health worker will have access to the healthcare information they need to protect their own health and the health of others". HIFA addresses the information needs of citizens as well as health workers and health policymakers, recognising the importance of citizens, parents and children as providers of care, especially in low-resource settings where health workers may be absent or hard to reach.[4] The HIFA vision is supported by more than 260 health and development organisations worldwide,[5] including the British Medical Association; BioMed Central; CAB International; Cochrane Collaboration; Hesperian Foundation; ICCDR, B; International Confederation of Midwives; International Council of Nurses; London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine; Medical Library Association; Partners in Health; Partnerships in Health Information; Public Library of Science; Royal College of Midwives; Royal College of Nursing; Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists; The Joanna Briggs Institute; THET; and Wikimedia Canada.[6]

The HIFA community interacts on five forums: HIFA, CHIFA, HIFA-Portuguese, HIFA-French, and HIFA-Zambia.

CHIFA (2006-), formerly known as CHILD2015, focuses on child health and rights and has 3000 global child health professionals. [7] CHIFA is administered jointly by Global Healthcare Information Network, International Child Health Group (Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health), and International Society for Social Paediatrics and Child Health.

HIFA-French (2010-) is a collaboration between the World Health Organization and Global Healthcare Information Network. The forum was originally called HIFA-EVIPNet-French and had a focus on the information needs of policy makers for health in francophone Africa, in association with the Evidence-Informed Policy Network at the World Health Organization. [8] In 2015, the forum expanded its remit to become HIFA-French, in association with the Health Service Delivery department of WHO.

In November 2009, the Global Healthcare Information Network and ePORTUGUESe (World Health Organization) launched a Portuguese version of HIFA.[9] HIFA–Portuguese has more than 1800 members in the eight Portuguese-speaking countries (Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe, Timor-Leste), which have a combined population of 240 million people.

In May 2011, HIFA-Zambia was launched in collaboration with the Zambia UK Health Workforce Alliance.

HIFA addresses the healthcare information needs of the full range of stakeholders, including:

  • Medical, nursing and midwifery students
  • Nurses and midwives
  • Community health workers
  • Mothers and family caregivers
  • Citizens, mothers and families
  • Users and prescribers of medicines

In June 2010, the Positive Practice Environments Campaign, hosted at the International Council of Nurses in Geneva, officially incorporated the HIFA2015 Fact Sheet: Meeting the information needs of health professionals into their campaign materials to empower health workers worldwide to deliver evidence-informed health services to the global population.[10][11][12]

In May 2011, the British Medical Association hosted the first international HIFA2015 Conference.[13] Virginia Barbour, Editor-in-Chief of PLoS Medicine, said, "It is a shameful fact that in 2011 people are still dying because their healthcare workers don’t have access to the information they need."[14]

From January to September 2011, HIFA underwent an external evaluation funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, which concluded: “HIFA2015 achieves an extraordinary level of activity on minimal resources from which many people around the world benefit".

In the summer of 2012, the European Association of Science Editors (EASE) formally became a new HIFA Supporting Organization. EASE supports the global initiative by advising authors to make abstracts of their papers highly informative, reliable, and easily understandable (see EASE Guidelines for Authors and Translators of Scientific Articles).


HIFA is currently supported (2015) by financial contributions from the British Medical Association (main funder), Africa Health, Afro-European Medical & Research Network, Anadach Group, Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria, Awojobi Clinic Eruwa, Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, Children for Health, Commonwealth Nurses Federation, Council of International Neonatal Nurses, eCancer, Elsevier, Friends Of Chitambo, Global Health Media Project, Haiti Nursing Foundation, HealthProm, Intel Corporation, International Child Health Group, International Foundation for Dermatology, International League of Dermatological Societies, International Society for Social Paediatrics and Child Health, IntraHealth International, Joanna Briggs Institute, Knowledge Transfer Africa Ltd, The Lancet, LiveWell Initiative, mPowering Frontline Health Workers, Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba, Network for Information and Digital Access, Partnerships in Health Information, Physicians for Haiti, Public Library of Science (PLOS), Quality + Care Solutions, Royal College of Midwives, The Test Foundation, The Mother and Child Health and Education Trust, WHO Collaborating Centre for Knowledge Translation & Health Technology Assessment in Health Equity, Wiki Project Med Foundation, Zambia UK Health Workforce Alliance.[5]


  1. ^ Smith, Richard; Koehlmoos, Tracey Pérez (30 June 2011). "Provision of health information for all". BMJ. doi:10.1136/bmj.d4151. 
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ Bailey, C; Pang, T (Jul 17–23, 2004). "Health information for all by 2015?". Lancet 364 (9430): 223–4. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(04)16686-5. PMID 15262080. 
  4. ^ Global Healthcare Information Network (2007). "HIFA2015 Foundation Document" (PDF). 
  5. ^ a b
  6. ^ "Support". HIFA2015. Retrieved 2011-08-19. 
  7. ^ "CHILD2015". HIFA2015. Retrieved 2012-07-23. 
  8. ^ "WHO | Evidence-Informed Policy Network". Retrieved 2011-08-19. 
  9. ^ "WHO | The ePORTUGUÊSe network". 2011-07-14. Retrieved 2011-08-19. 
  10. ^ "Positive practice environments for health care professionals" (PDF). PPE Campaign. Retrieved 26 March 2014. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Invitation to HIFA2015". 2011-01-29. Retrieved 2011-08-19. 
  13. ^ Wise, Jacqui, T (2011-05-10). "Access to health information is vital for low income countries". BMJ 342: d2950. doi:10.1136/bmj.d2950. PMID 21558356. 
  14. ^ Barbour, Virginia (May 12, 2011). "HIFA2015 Conference: lack of access to healthcare information is lethal". Public Library of Science. Retrieved 26 March 2014. 

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