Message from Chair
What is global health? Some say global health is an area for study, research, and practice that places a priority on improving health and achieving health equity for all people worldwide. Others say it is collaborative trans-national research and action for promoting health for all. These are all correct and model answers, but there is a definition which I think captures the essence of global health, both domestic and international health, most closely: “Global health is the future of medicine.”
In this increasingly interconnected world, a health problem in one area today can be anyone’s problem tomorrow. In order to solve a given health issue, we have to bring in not only medical but political, social, economic and cultural perspectives. Non-profit organizations and individuals have emerged as new key players and made great contributions through innovative solutions and efficient operations, in partnership with conventional players in health such as the World Health Organization and national governments. Pharmaceutical companies, which used to be stubborn opponents to diffusing generic drugs in developing countries, now see providing “access to medicine” in least-developed countries as a long-term strategic investment. Global health is, therefore, what requires us to think creatively and thoughtfully beyond borders, disciplines and sectors – and most importantly to act together. This will become a norm for everyone involved and committed to enhance health for all.
Such a process will be facilitated and informed by high quality evidence. Harvey Fineberg, the President of the Institute of Medicine, once told me, “Good policies can be made without evidence. Bad policies can also be made without evidence. But better policies can be made only with evidence.”
The Department of Global Health Policy (GHP) aims at transforming global health policy through best possible evidence and developing next-generation leaders who can actively contribute to solving global health issues. We offer GHP students a theoretical basis in and practical opportunities to nurture competencies and skills required to be a global health leader in the area of global health policy. With the GHP experience, we hope that our students will become ready to be part of “the future” and, therefore, that the world will become a better place than it is today.