U.S. Ambassador to Brazil Liliana Ayalde and Governor José Ivo Sartori Sign Memorandum of Understanding

The two leaders will participate in a roundtable on health care

Today, Thursday, February 5, U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, Liliana Ayalde and Governor of Rio Grande do Sul, José Ivo Sartori signed a Memorandum of Understanding advancing subnational cooperation between the Rio Grande do Sul government and the United States.  The agreement, which calls for greater collaboration in the areas of trade and investment; science, technology, and innovation; public security; and education, was praised by Governor Sartori and Ambassador Ayalde.

To capitalize on the newly signed Memorandum of Understanding, Ambassador Ayalde and Secretary of Economic Development, Science and Technology Fábio Branco, Governor Sartori’s representative, will co-host a Health Care Round Table on February 6, 2015 at the Rio Grande do Sul Governor’s Palace.  Several State Secretaries, Municipal Secretaries, hospital CEO’s and leading U.S. health IT companies will gather to discuss the policies, best practices and technology solutions being implemented to address the major challenges within the sector.

U.S. Ambassador Ayalde said, “We are pleased that we are able to immediately capitalize on this new Memorandum of Understanding as we co-host a Health Sector roundtable discussion with Secretary Fabio Branco tomorrow.  Global health is a major priority for the United States Government, which dedicates billions of dollars each year to improve health care in the United States and around the world.  Through partnerships with other countries, multilateral organizations, private corporations and non-governmental organizations, the United States Government strives to ensure access to essential high quality and affordable services.  Support in leadership, governance, technology, electronic and digital solutions applied to health, including applications using mobile technology, are part of the solution”.

Ambassador Ayalde and Governor Sartori, of Rio Grande do Sul, hold a Memorandum of Understanding they just signed. (Photo: U.S. Consulate-General São Paulo)
Ambassador Ayalde and Governor Sartori, of Rio Grande do Sul, hold a Memorandum of Understanding they just signed. (Photo: U.S. Consulate-General São Paulo)

The U.S. and Brazil also cooperate in the areas of biotechnology, epidemiology, infectious diseases, and regulatory approval processes.  Ambassador Ayalde added, “Our two countries’ populations of 200 million Brazilians and 300 million Americans pose similar challenges and opportunities in scale.  So we see tremendous potential to learn from each other to continuously improve our health care systems.”

“In Rio Grande do Sul, we want to strengthen and unify our forces to offer excellent services to the public.  To do so, two issues are essential:  working together, across different areas of government and being innovators, which is only possible when the work of government is integrated with society, universities and businesses.  Health care is a fundamental right and promoting efficiency is our duty,” emphasized Governor Sartori.

Secretary Fábio Branco cited projects supported by the State in areas of technical cooperation such as the agreement with the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz).  The program provides for the implementation of the Human, Animal and Ecosystems, which will contribute to sustained regional development based on innovation and scientific development.  To attract investment to the health care sector, Rio Grande do Sul has instituted a 30% tax credit on the State Tax on the Circulation of Goods and Services (ICMS) and a 60% tax credit for companies that invest in Rio Grande do Sul and which are part of Fundopem.  “These examples show that Rio Grande do Sul is creating an environment favorable to research and investment, and that health care should be treated in a holistic manner, integrating different sectors in order to improve health care results and reduce costs.”

The four U.S. health information technology (IT) companies present at the round table, Deloitte, IBM, Oracle and United Health Group, have vast experience in developing such initiatives.  Analyzing cost drivers, incentivizing healthier patient behavior and engagement, and rewarding improved measurable outcomes are among the key issues these companies will address.

In addition to participating in the roundtable, Ambassador Ayalde will tour the technology park at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul (TECNOPUC) and visit the Ibere Camargo Foundation during her trip to Porto Alegre.

For more information please contact:

Press Office – U. S. Consulate General in Sao Paulo
Phone: (11) 3250-5237/ 3250-5276
E-mail: SaoPauloImprensa@state.gov