CARPHA is an institution of the CARICOM community (CARICOM) and is governed at the highest level by the Heads of Government and the Council of Ministers of Health of Member States (COHSOD), which are the principal policy-making organs for the Agency.

Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA)


CARPHA was established at the signing of an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) by Caribbean Community Member States in July 2011 which saw the merging of the five Regional Health Institutions under one umbrella. The Caribbean Epidemiological Centre (CAREC), the Caribbean Environmental Health Institute (CEHI), the Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI), the Caribbean Research Council (CHRC) and the Caribbean Drug Testing Laboratory (CRDTL) became the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).

The IGA outlines in detail all the necessary regional and organisational players and their functions within the Agency such as the Council of Ministers, the Executive Board, the Technical Advisory Committee, the Technical Secretariat among others. The agreement informs CARPHA’s governance structure, objectives and functions.

The IGA is the document that recognizes CARPHA as the Public Health Agency that represents the Caribbean region, it also designates CARPHA as an institution of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). This comprehensive document guides major elements of the Agency’s corporate operations; giving policy to issues of revenue collection and disbursement, agency localities, legal statutes and processes as well as privileges and immunities. The Agency began operation in January 2013.