A Conversation with MTaPS Principal Technical Advisor Dr. Tamara Hafner

February 3, 2020

What is your role for MTaPS?
I am the program’s research advisor and the technical strategy lead for the Cross Bureau portfolio.

If a genie could give you three wishes for the future of global health, what would you ask for?
I always worry about the inherent paternalism in global health. So perhaps constant awareness among stakeholders of the power relationships that exist in global health and how that influences which ideas are given currency. I wish for real partnership between those being helped and those helping, recognizing that those two categories can be fluid in some cases. And of course equity has to be at the heart of health, so I wish for equity, too. 

What’s the last country you visited, and what did you like most about it?
I am currently in the Philippines where the country is ramping up plans for the implementation of its UHC policy. This poses a lot of challenges and opportunities, and it has been interesting to observe some of this playing out in real time, even from my small vantage point. The warmth and dynamism of the people I have interacted with so far at all levels, but especially the field office team, has been so refreshing for the spirit.