Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI)

Addresses India's capacity gaps in Public Health, focusing on training, research, and policy development to enhance public health initiatives

  • Bronze Certified 2023
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  • Headquarters

    Delhi, Delhi

  • Since


The Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) is a not for profit public-private initiative working towards a healthier India. A national consultation, Read more convened by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in September 2004, recommended a foundation which could rapidly advance public health education, training, research and advocacy. PHFI has collaboratively evolved through consultations with multiple constituencies including Indian and international academia, state and central governments, multi and bilateral agencies, global foundations and civil society groups. The Government of India enabled the setting up of PHFI in 2006 in response to the limited public health institutional capacity and the foundation was established to strengthen training, research and policy through interdisciplinary and health system connected education and, policy programme relevant research, evidence-based & equity promoting policy development, affordable health technologies, people empowering health promotion & advocacy for prioritised health causes in the area of Public Health. PHFI was conceptualized as a unique public-private initiative representing a Partnership for Public Purpose. PHFI is an independent foundation headquartered in New Delhi and its constituent Indian Institutes of Public Health (IIPHs) set up by PHFI have a presence in Gandhinagar (Gujarat), Hyderabad (Telangana), Delhi NCR, Bhubaneswar (Odisha) and Shillong (Meghalaya). PHFI works collaboratively with all stakeholders in the health system. PHFI and the IIPHs provide technical support and assistance to central and state governments for informing and aiding governmental initiatives. PHFI engages with other partners including the research community, academia, NGOs, civil society, and media towards a collective action on health across sectors, and work with international agencies who support broader public health capacity building in India. Our aim is to play an enabling role in the transformation of India's health scenario.


PHFI's extensive portfolio boasts 133 active research and implementation projects, in partnership with global academic institutions, governments, NGOs, and the private sector, culminating in 2337 publications with substantial impact.


  • Academic programs on public health

    Provides both on-campus and eLearning academic programs as well as short-term trainings in various fields of public health. Also actively engages in research that aligns with programs and policies.
    It aspires to set high standards in public health education, training, and research. The primary objective is to offer quality training to graduates from diverse backgrounds in various public health domains, contributing to the national health objectives.
    Collaborating closely with state governments, it conducts state-specific and regional research. They strive to ensure that education and research are contextually relevant for India, maintaining global-quality standards.
    The programs feature top-notch scientific content, delivery, and are tailored to the needs of developing nations. Courses are consistently updated to include the latest public health advancements and meet student needs.

  • iPROMISe - Promoting health literacy in school

    Project iPROMISe (PROMoting Health Literacy in School) is an ongoing school-based initiative aimed at fostering a supportive environment among children and adolescents to embrace healthy lifestyle practices. PHFI has collaborated with the World India Diabetes Foundation (WIDF) to implement this project. A comprehensive module has been designed, featuring interactive activities and short, all rooted in the Health Belief Model (HBM), emphasizing the significance of a nutritious diet and physical activity. PHFI is strategizing to adapt these interventions for virtual platforms. This includes online sessions, competitions, and the creation of a mobile application to spread preventive messages that can influence both home and school environments. The audio-visual short films developed as part of Project iPROMISe have been shared with schools, and additional reinforcing messages are being produced for dissemination via social media platforms.

  • India Works initiative

    India-Works is an ongoing health and wellness initiative designed to delay the onset of diabetes among high-risk individuals in 11 selected large manufacturing industries in India. Supported by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, USA, the initiative aims to assess the viability, acceptability, and effectiveness of a peer-led structured lifestyle modification program.
    India-Works initiative presents a range of offerings aimed at enhancing health and wellness in the workplace. These include a comprehensive and evidence-based wellness program catering to employees and their families. Expert talks and webinars cover topics like stress management, mental health, parenting, work-life balance, ergonomics, exercise, and nutrition. The program includes high-intensity interval training to engage children and adolescents. Additionally, it promotes healthier adaptations of existing food recipes to further support holistic well-being.

  • Tobacco cessation counselling


    Tobacco cessation counseling by healthcare providers is crucial for aiding people in quitting tobacco use. However, healthcare providers often face time constraints in outpatient clinics. Mobile phone interventions, proven effective in developed countries, can enhance quitting rates by 25-50%. Despite WHO's endorsement for such interventions, their effectiveness has not been tested.
    The intervention CERTAIN seeks to assess the viability of conducting an initial randomized controlled trial as a precursor to a larger study, evaluating the clinical efficacy (measured by tobacco cessation) and cost-effectiveness of a multifaceted intervention. This intervention combines face-to-face counselling with mobile phone calls and messaging for smokeless tobacco users in Indian primary care clinics, alongside standard care. The study will also create and assess a novel mobile phone-based counselling system to aid tobacco users in quitting over an 18-month period.

  • Research

    Since its establishment, PHFI has actively collaborated with national and international institutions to build a solid evidence foundation for public health. Through prioritized health domains, it has propelled policy-oriented research, partnering to address infectious and chronic diseases, maternal and child health, health systems, and health determinants. Encouraging scientific curiosity, PHFI fosters an environment for faculty, staff, and students to explore diverse public health disciplines and drive research agendas.

    A Research Management Committee (RMC) guides and supports organized research activities across PHFI. An independent Research Advisory Committee (RAC), chaired by Professor Barry Bloom, provides external expertise for peer review and strategic counsel. Upholding ethical standards, an Institutional Ethics Committee (IEC) reviews research proposals, offers guidance, and ensures ethical practice.

  • Centres of Excellence

    PHFI has set up four Centres of Excellence to raise awareness and strengthen research, training and education in the high priority area of public health in India. These centres are:
    Ramalingaswami Centre for Social determinants of Health, Bengaluru
    Centre for Chronic Conditions & Injuries (CCCI)
    South Asia Centre for Disability Inclusive Development and Research (SACDIR), Hyderabad
    Centre for Environmental Health (CEH)
    Centre for Digital Health

Leadership Team



  • Jasmine S. Samuel

    Executive Secretary


    Board Member




    Board Member

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