Stanford University
Center for Innovation in
Global Health  

From the Global Health Director's Desk

Michele Barry shares Global Health updates at Stanford with you quarterly:

Dear Global Health Colleagues,

It’s been a full semester for global health at Stanford with several ongoing activities to report upon to the global health community.  On a very personal note I had the pleasure of attending a meeting along with the Fogarty Center, CDC and PEPFAR in Washington DC to finalize the plan to initiate a medical arm of the Peace Corps, which when launched will be called the Global Health Partnership.  This is scheduled to be piloted in August 2011, with 20 people for one year each and a goal of growing to 700 corps members over the next five years. Plans including provision of debt amnesty for corps members and finances for this part of the program are still being investigated, but it looks promising.

The Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health (CIGH) co-sponsored several educational events and activities across campus this spring and into early summer.  Thank you to those of you who were able to attend and keep a look out for exciting plans coming in the autumn.

With the Graduate School of Business (GSB), we offered a provocative multidisciplinary seminar series in the spring for business and medical students, fellows and faculty on the Role of Multinationals and their Impact upon Global Health. Speakers were webcasted and questions fielded from the live and on-line audience. These sessions can be accessed here.  Speakers included:

  • David Kessler, past FDA Commissioner giving his perspective on the somewhat intentional impact the food industry has had upon the obesity epidemic
  • Robert Proctor, Professor of the History of Science at Stanford sharing his experiences working on issues of tobacco regulation in he US
  • Donald Shriber, the CDC’s Deputy Director for policy and Communication discussing the role of government agencies in global health
  • Jack Watters, VP for External Medical Affairs from Pfizer to discuss the pharmaceutical industry
  • Sir Richard Feachem, past head of the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and current Executive Director of UCSF’s Global Health Sciences discussing new approaches to his perspective of the broken aspects of the AID industry.

The GSB Healthcare Innovation Summit was held on May 11 at the GSB led by Stefanos Zenios. The CGH co-sponsored a global health panel which featured: Dr. Sally Stansfield from WHO, Dr. Stephen Rulisa of the National University of Rwanda, Dr. Frank Nyonator of Ghana Health Service, and Anne Moncure of Fortis Healthcare.  Panelists discussed how countries in Africa and Southeast Asia have innovated with constrained resources for effective delivery of health services and offered a different perspective for US delivery of care.   This panel, and others from the event, can be accessed here.

Conversations in Global Health, a new seminar series for those interested in global health policy, programs, and delivery, started on May 18.  The first session featured Andrea and Barry Coleman, the founders of Riders for Health as well as a panel discussion including Krista Donaldson from D-Rev Design, Kel Sheppy from Wild4Life and Ana Zacapa of the Skoll Foundation.  These conversations will provide insights into various aspects of global health delivery and are meant to be extremely interactive.  They will be held quarterly starting in the autumn.

The 15 new Johnson and Johnson Stanford Clinical Scholars and 8 new Mary Duke Biddle Scholars that were announced in March-April attended a pre-departure orientation program on July 2 to prepare them for their for overseas placements.  The scholars will be working in: Bangladesh, Borneo, Liberia, Malawi, Nepal, Rwanda, South Africa, and Uganda.

Drs. Alexander Sandu and Lance Downing have arrived as the inaugural Global Health Track Residents in Internal Medicine. During this program, they will be rotating on a monthly basis to a migrant farm camp working with Dr. Sara Doorley, who runs a mobile health van in Morgan Hill.

Drs. John Kugler and Brooke Cotter ran a standing room only tropical medicine case-based series for residents, faculty and fellows going overseas. Their innovative interactive teaching styles engaged all despite the often-impugned evening venue.

As part of the Novel Education Clinical Trainees and Researchers Program (NECTAR) in Zimbabwe, Dr. Trevor Winter visited Parirenyata Hospital in Harare to jumpstart the new Stanford Visiting Professors Program funded by the Medical Education Partnership Initiative (MEPI), an NIH program to enable medical education in sub-Saharan Africa. Professors from Stanford are working with those from the University of Colorado and the University of Zimbabwe Health Sciences in an attempt to rebuild medical education. More information on this program and an application for the Visiting Professors Program are available here.

Throughout the academic year, the CGH has been actively funding design projects focused on global health in the SPARK Drug & Diagnostic Discovery, Biodesign, Stanford Health Policy, GSB Program for Healthcare Innovation and Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability programs and courses through the C-IDEA grant provided by the NIH.  Fourteen new projects have been spawned by this grant and include innovations in the delivery of oxygen to pediatric patients, evaluation of a low-cost incubator, POC diagnostics for TB and schistosomiasis, treatment of lymphedema, improved vaccine transportation and assays to distinguish types of diabetes and detect ne-natal jaundice. Medical students are encouraged to enroll in these courses and participate in these programs for the 2011-12 school year. 

Last but not least, the CGH has created the Stanford-NBC Fellowship in Media and Global Health in order to teach future clinicians to use different forms of media to advocate for global health and help lessen health inequities. The inaugural fellow, Joyce Ho is a Stanford second year medical student who was selected through a national application process. She will be working in various media settings including with Dr. Nancy Snyderman, Chief Medical Correspondent for NBC News, NING - a new social media platform, the Journal for Health Affairs, and Mark Tuschman, a photojournalist.  She will also complete training programs through the Stanford Graduate Program in Journalism and with the Kaiser Family Foundation.

All in all it has been a busy quarter. As they say it takes a village---none of these activities could be realized without the help of the Center for Global Health core working team.

Safe travels for the summer.

Most sincerely,
Michele Barry

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