The National Institute of Health Administration (INAS) is funded by the Ministry of Health and is in charge of training and research in public health and health administration. It has a leader role in promoting and carrying out health system research for the Ministry of Health. INAS is a World Health Organization collaborative centre since 1994. INAS’ mission, as defined by the ministry of health, is 1°) to develop initial (MPH) and continuous training programs in health program management and health care management 2°) to develop the expertise and technical support in public health and health care management 3°) to undertake research in the domain of the health system 4°) To ensure the dissemination of the information related to its expertise 5°) to monitor the training needs of health professionals and 6°) To develop South–North and South-South collaboration in public health and health administration (research and training).

INAS, which falls under the Ministry of Health, will lead the FEMHealth research and dissemination work in Morocco.

Abderrahmane Maaroufi is Professor of epidemiology and public health, Head of the Public Health Department at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Casablanca and director of the National Institute of Health Administration. He graduated from the University of Montreal, and is a WHO expert in evaluation, a ‘Partners in population and development’ expert and an evaluator of research projects supported by the Spanish cooperation. He coordinated many national and international projects such as ‘Promotion of physical activity by using marketing methods (Development of multifaceted intervention)’; Co-investigator of the ‘Promotion of Clinical Prevention program in Quebec (Canada)’; Epidemiological studies in the field of HIV, HTLV, Viral hepatitis C, Urinary disorders, obesity; Evaluation of the National Health Care Quality Assurance project; Evaluation of the quality of health care in public hospitals; Arabic Translation and trans-cultural validation of Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36). Pr Maaroufi will supervise the research teams and lead the organisation of national and international events.

Amina Essolbi is a medical doctor with an MPH (Boston University) who has worked for 5 years as medical officer before being recruited by USAID-Morocco as health care specialist (1994-98). Then she joined INAS in 1994 where she is a lecturer. She also teaches in different national and international short courses (VIH-AIDS, Ipact, continuing training) matters in relation to planning, project elaboration and epidemiology. She coordinates a 6-month course in advanced epidemiology and disease surveillance. Her current domain of research is related to the role of home caregivers for diabetic patients. She will lead the WP3 on realist evaluation and share her epidemiological skills for WP4.

Hind Filali is a psycho-social scientist (University Paris V). After two years as psycho-sociologist at the Directorate of Population, MOH, she joined INAS in 1992. She led the implementation of the qualitative part of three major EU-INCO researches in Morocco (STD3 on children health seeking behaviour; STD3 on referral and counter-referral; INCO-DEV on near miss cases). Then she worked at CERED from 2000 until 2006 (as a sociologist research) before coming back to INAS in 2006. She is co-author of several articles in relation to the research mentioned above and led the publication of several reports in relation to adolescent reproductive health, abortion, and VIH. She will lead the qualitative work in Morocco.

Hafid Hachri is a medical doctor with a MPH (INAS). He worked as medical officer in a rural district 5 years before joining the Directorate of Hospitals and Ambulatory Care in 2004 where he coordinated an important program (25 million €) on regionalization and strengthening of basic health services. He joined INAS in 2008 to start a PhD on Family medicine and quality of care in health centers. He is a lecturer in different modules taught in the INAS MPH course and coordinates a short course on planning, contracting and evaluating budgets. Dr Hachri will help the WP3 as a resource person for realist evaluations.

Bouchra Assarag is a medical doctor with a certificate in STI/HIV (University of Rabat), a certificate in sport medicine (EHESS Rennes) and a MPH (INAS). She worked as medical officer in a rural district 6 years before joining INAS in 2008 to start a PhD on maternal morbidity. She is an active member of civil associations in the domain of adolescent health, HIV, and family planning. She participated to several studies (national study on burden of diseases, mandatory declaration of diseases in the private sector, the quality of management of STI in the public sector, children infected and affected by HIV). In INAS, she coordinates a short course on project management in the domain of HIV. Dr Assarag will lead the WP4, focussing on the near miss epidemiological survey.

Amina Abaacrouche is a medical doctor with a MPH (INAS). She has a field experience of 10 years in a rural hospital. Then, she joined the Directorate Population in Rabat where she coordinated an EU partnership program on family planning (93-97) and the monitoring of emergency obstetric care (98-03). She contributed to the writing of many guidelines in the domain of safe motherhood and family planning. She became head of Family Planning Division in 2004 before joining INAS in 2007. In INAS, she is a lecturer of different modules related to safe motherhood, basic concepts in public health and family planning. She coordinates an international short course on maternal and neonatal health (Ipact). She is leading research on maternity waiting homes. Dr Abaacrouche will contribute to WP3 and 4.

Chakib Boukhalfa is a newly recruited assistant professor at INAS. He is an economist graduated from the Université de Bourgogne (Dijon, France), where he obtained his doctorate in economic sciences in 2008. He will coordinate the research project and will work on the financial part of WP2.