Informatics and information technology do not appear to be valued by the health industry to the degree that they are in other industries. The agenda for health informatics should be presented so that value to the health system is linked directly to required investment. The agenda should acknowledge the foundation provided by the current health system and the role of financial issues, system impediments, policy, and knowledge in effecting change. The desired outcomes should be compelling, such as improved public health, improved quality as perceived by consumers, and lower costs. Strategies to achieve these outcomes should derive from the differentia of health, opportunities to leverage other efforts, and lessons from successes inside and outside the health industry. Examples might include using logistics to improve quality, mass customization to adapt to individual values, and system thinking to change the game to one that can be won. The justification for the informatics infrastructure of a virtual health care data bank, a national health care knowledge base, and a personal clinical health record flows naturally from these strategies.
Stead, William W.; Lorenzi, Nancy M.
Strengthening the capacity of public health systems to protect and promote the health of the global population continues to be essential in an increasingly connected world. Informatics practices and principles can play an important role for improving global health response capacity. A critical step is to develop an informatics agenda for global health so that efforts can be prioritized and important global health issues addressed. With the aim of building a foundation for this agenda, the authors developed a workshop to examine the evidence in this domain, recognize the gaps, and document evidence-based recommendations. On 21 August 2011, at the 2011 Public Health Informatics Conference in Atlanta, GA, USA, a four-hour interactive workshop was conducted with 85 participants from 15 countries representing governmental organizations, private sector companies, academia, and non-governmental organizations. The workshop discussion followed an agenda of a plenary session - planning and agenda setting - and four tracks: Policy and governance; knowledge management, collaborative networks and global partnerships; capacity building; and globally reusable resources: metrics, tools, processes, templates, and digital assets. Track discussions examined the evidence base and the participants’ experience to gather information about the current status, compelling and potential benefits, challenges, barriers, and gaps for global health informatics as well as document opportunities and recommendations. This report provides a summary of the discussions and key recommendations as a first step towards building an informatics agenda for global health. Attention to the identified topics and issues is expected to lead to measurable improvements in health equity, health outcomes, and impacts on population health. We propose the workshop report be used as a foundation for the development of the full agenda and a detailed roadmap for global health informatics activities based on further contribution from key stakeholders. The global health informatics agenda and roadmap can provide guidance to countries for developing and enhancing their individual and regional agendas.
Mirza, Muzna; Kratz, Mary; Medeiros, Donna; Pina, Jamie; Richards, Janise; Zhang, Xiaohui; Fraser, Hamish; Bailey, Christopher; Krishnamurthy, Ramesh
Objectives This paper outlines a new method of teaching health informatics to large numbers of students from around the world through a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). Methods The Health Informatics Forum is one of examples of MOOCs through a social networking site for educating health informatics students and professionals. It is running a MOOC for students from around the world that uses creative commons licenced content funded by the US government and developed by five US universities. The content is delivered through narrated lectures with slides that can be viewed online with discussion threads on the forum for class interactions. Students can maintain a professional profile, upload photos and files, write their own blog posts and post discussion threads on the forum. Results The Health Informatics Forum MOOC has been accessed by 11,316 unique users from 127 countries from August 2, 2012 to January 24, 2014. Most users accessed the MOOC via a desktop computer, followed by tablets and mobile devices and 55% of users were female. Over 400,000 unique users have now accessed the wider Health Informatics Forum since it was established in 2008. Conclusions Advances in health informatics and educational technology have both created a demand for online learning material in health informatics and a solution for providing it. By using a MOOC delivered through a social networking platform it is hoped that high quality health informatics education will be able to be delivered to a large global audience of future health informaticians without cost.
This chapter gives an educational overview of: * health informatics competencies in medical, nursing and allied clinical health professions * health informatics learning cultures and just-in-time health informatics training in clinical work settings * major considerations in selecting or developing health informatics education and training programs for local implementation * using elearning effectively to meet the objectives of health informatics education. PMID:20407180
Liaw, Siaw Teng; Gray, Kathleen
Health Informatics (HI) is a dynamic discipline based on the medical sciences, information sciences, and cognitive sciences. Its domain can broadly be defined as medical information management. The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of this domain, discuss the current "state of the art," and indicate the likely growth areas for health informatics. The sources of information used in this paper are selected publications from the literature of Health Informatics, HI 5300: Introduction to Health Informatics, which is a course from the Department of Health Informatics at the University of Texas Houston Health Sciences Center, and the author's personal experience in practicing telemedicine and implementing an electronic medical record at the NASA-Johnson Space Center. The conclusion is that the direction of Health Informatics is in the direction of data management, transfer, and representation via electronic medical records and the Internet.
McGinnis, Patrick J.
Health Informatics (HI) is a dynamic discipline based upon the medical sciences, information sciences, and cognitive sciences. Its domain is can broadly be defined as medical information management. The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of this domain, discuss the current "state of the art" , and indicate the likely growth areas for health informatics. The sources of information utilized in this paper are selected publications from the literature of Health Informatics, HI 5300: Introduction to Health Informatics, which is a course from the Department of Health Informatics at the University of Texas Houston Health Sciences Center, and the author's personal experience in practicing telemedicine and implementing an electronic medical record at the NASA Johnson Space Center. The conclusion is that the direction of Health Informatics is in the direction of data management, transfer, and representation via electronic medical records and the Internet.
McGinnis, Patrick J.
The American Medical Informatics Association 2001 Spring Congress brought together the public health and informatics communities to develop a national agenda for public health informatics. Discussions on funding and governance; architecture and infrastructure; standards and vocabulary; research, evaluation, and best practices; privacy, confidentiality, and security; and training and workforce resulted in 74 recommendations with two key themes: (1) all stakeholders need to be engaged in coordinated activities related to public health information architecture, standards, confidentiality, best practices, and research and (2) informatics training is needed throughout the public health workforce. Implementation of this consensus agenda will help promote progress in the application of information technology to improve public health. PMID:11713752
Yasnoff, W A; Overhage, J M; Humphreys, B L; LaVenture, M; Goodman, K W; Gatewood, L; Ross, D A; Reid, J; Hammond, W E; Dwyer, D; Huff, S M; Gotham, I; Kukafka, R; Loonsk, J W; Wagner, M M
From the hypothesis that the development of scientific papers, mainly in interdisciplinary areas such as Health Informatics, may bring difficulties to the author, as had its communicative efficacy decreased or compromising their approval for publication; we aim to make considerations on the main items to good players making this kind of text. The scientific writing has peculiarities that must be taken into consideration when it writes: general characteristics, such as simplicity and objectivity, and characteristics of each area of knowledge, such as terminology, formatting and standardization. The research methodology adopted is bibliographical. The information was based on literature review and the authors' experience, teachers and assessors of scientific methodology in peer review publications in the area. As a result, we designed a checklist of items to be checked before submission of a paper to a scientific publication vehicle in order to contribute to the promotion of research, facilitating the publication and increase its capacity in this important area of knowledge. PMID:23823379
Pereira, Samáris Ramiro; Duarte, Jacy Marcondes; Bandiera-Paiva, Paulo
We are reporting on a recent experience with Health Informatics (HI) teaching at undergraduate degree level to an audience of HI and Pharmacy students. The important insight is that effective teaching of clinical informatics must involve highly interactive, applied components in addition to the traditional theoretical material. This is in agreement with general literature underlining the importance of simulations and role playing in teaching and is well supported by our student evaluation results. However, the viability and sustainability of such approaches to teaching hinges on significant course preparation efforts. These efforts consist of time-consuming investigations of informatics technologies, applications and systems followed by the implementation of workable solutions to a wide range of technical problems. In effect, this approach to course development is an involved process that relies on a special form of applied research whose technical complexity could explain the dearth of published reports on similar approaches in HI education. Despite its difficulties, we argue that this approach can be used to set a baseline for clinical informatics training at undergraduate level and that its implications for HI education in Canada are of importance. PMID:21335688
Pantazi, Stefan V; Pantazi, Felicia; Daly, Karen
As health care job opportunities continue to expand, a number of institutions have been developing online training materials to help support academic public health programs. One such program is the Michigan Informatics (MI-INFO) website, which contains a variety of tutorials that deal with health information and computer skills. All told, the site contains nine tutorials which include titles like "Evidence Based Public Health", "Finding Health Statistics Online", and "Searching the Public Health Literature". Each of the tutorials features key concept overviews, exercises, and case studies. Near the bottom of the site, visitors can find a user manual for the tutorials, and a place where they can offer their own feedback. The site is rounded out by the "Other Resources" area, which contains links to other relevant sites, such as the Michigan Public Health Training Center and the Greater Midwest Region of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine.
The Information Era we live in has created new challenges and opportunities. This age of information highways has an economic price, which has not been properly evaluated. Detailed studies are needed to prove the cost and medical effectiveness of these technologies as well as its effects in the quality of life. Our society's future may depend on it. People are living longer, discoveries in genetics and in information technology are not only helping produce newer drugs faster but also providing the opportunity to exploit new areas such as disease prevention. These technologies provide a variety of opportunities to address public health challenges such as universal access for the uneducated, counter-bioterrorism, telemedicine, distance education, and home care. These opportunities present new challenges such as: surveillance, privacy/confidentiality/security of personal information which will affect all of our lives. No strategy has been presented publicly (yet) addressing (neither) the benefits (n)or the pitfalls of such technologies. From an economic point of view it is an imperative necessity to understand the importance of the Information Technology Infrastructure (ITI) and what it is. The investments in creating and maintaining this ITI will not come from a single application area such as healthcare, but rather from a combination of sources such as electronic commerce, banking, financial, manufacturing, entertainment, travelling, weather forecasting, pharmaceuticals, education, defence and many other 'industries' or application areas. PMID:11226613
Kun, L G
Informatics and information technology do not appear to be valued by the health industry to the degree that they are in other industries. The agenda for health informatics should be presented so that value to the health system is linked directly to required investment. The agenda should acknowledge the foundation provided by the current health system and the role of financial issues, system impediments, policy, and knowledge in effecting change. The desired outcomes should be compelling, such as improved public health, improved quality as perceived by consumers, and lower costs. Strategies to achieve these outcomes should derive from the differentia of health, opportunities to leverage other efforts, and lessons from successes inside and outside the health industry. Examples might include using logistics to improve quality, mass customization to adapt to individual values, and system thinking to change the game to one that can be won. The justification for the informatics infrastructure of a virtual health care data bank, a national health care knowledge base, and a personal clinical health record flows naturally from these strategies. PMID:10495093
Stead, W W; Lorenzi, N M
Objectives Health informatics programs usually are evaluated by national accreditation committees. Not always are the members of these committees well informed about the international level of (education in) health informatics. Therefore, when a program is accredited by a national accreditation committee, this does not always mean that the program is of an international level. The International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA) has expertise in the field of education. The IMIA Recommendations on Education in Biomedical and Health Informatics guide curricula development. The goal of this article is to show that IMIA can also play the role of accreditation agency and to present the IMIA accreditation protocol and experiences obtained with it. Methods The accreditation procedure used in the Netherlands and Belgium was taken as a template for the design of the IMIA accreditation protocol. In a trial period of one and a half year the protocol is tested out on six health informatics programs. Results An accreditation protocol was designed. For judging the curriculum of a program the IMIA Recommendations are used. The institution has to write a self-assessment report and a site visit committee visits the program and judges its quality, supported by the self-assessment report and discussions with all stakeholders of the program. Conclusions After having visited three programs it appears that the IMIA accreditation procedure works well. Only a few changes had to be introduced. Writing the self-assessment report already appears to be beneficial for the management of the program to obtain a better insight in the quality of their program.
The public sectors of developing countries require strengthened capacity in health informatics. In Peru, where formal university graduate degrees in biomedical and health informatics were lacking until recently, the AMAUTA Global Informatics Research and Training Program has provided research and training for health professionals in the region since 1999. The Fogarty International Center supports the program as a collaborative partnership between Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia in Peru and the University of Washington in the United States of America. The program aims to train core professionals in health informatics and to strengthen the health information resource capabilities and accessibility in Peru. The program has achieved considerable success in the development and institutionalization of informatics research and training programs in Peru. Projects supported by this program are leading to the development of sustainable training opportunities for informatics and eight of ten Peruvian fellows trained at the University of Washington are now developing informatics programs and an information infrastructure in Peru. In 2007, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia started offering the first graduate diploma program in biomedical informatics in Peru.
Kimball, Ann Marie; Curioso, Walter H; Arima, Yuzo; Fuller, Sherrilynne; Garcia, Patricia J; Segovia-Juarez, Jose; Castagnetto, Jesus M; Leon-Velarde, Fabiola; Holmes, King K
A dialogue between upper management and operational elements over an organization's informatics policies and procedures could take place in an environment in which both parties could succeed. Excellent patient care practices can exist in organizational settings where upper management is not concerned with the specifics of the medical care process. But as the medical care process itself becomes costly, complex, and part of the purview of upper management, solutions to ambiguous informatics policies and practices need to be found. As the discussion of cost determination suggests, a comprehensive "top-down" solution may not be feasible. Allowing patient care expertise to drive the design and implementation of clinical computing modules without unduly restrictive specifications from above is probably the best way to proceed. But if the organization needs to know the specifics of a treatment episode, then the informatics definitions specific to treatment episodes need to be unambiguous and consistently applied. As the discussion of Social Security numbers suggests, communication of information across various parts of the organization not only requires unambiguous data structure definitions, but also suggests that the communication process not be dependent on the content of the messages. Both ideas--consistent data structure definitions for essential data and open system communication architectures--are current in the medical informatician's vocabulary. The same ideas are relevant to the management and operation of large and diffuse health care enterprises. The lessons we are learning about informatics policy and practice controls in clinical computing need to be applied to the enterprise as a whole. PMID:1921663
Holden, F M
We introduce the Applied Health Informatics Bootcamp. This is an intense, interactive on-site program, augmented by approximately 80 hours of online material. The Bootcamp is intended to introduce those with little or no knowledge of Health Informatics (HI) to the nature, key concepts, and applications of this discipline to addressing challenges in the health field. The focus of the program is on Applied Health Informatics (AHI), the discipline addressing the preparation for, and the procurement, deployment, implementation, resourcing, effective usage, and evaluation of informatics solutions in the health system. Although no program of this duration can cover all topics, we target the high profile areas of Health Informatics and point the participants in the direction of broader and deeper explorations.
Fenton, Shirley; Covvey, H. Dominic
Improving healthcare quality while simultaneously reducing cost has become a high priority of healthcare reform. Informatics is crucial in tackling this challenge. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 mandates adaptation and “meaningful use (MU)” of health information technology. In this review, we will highlight several areas in which informatics can make significant contributions, with a focus on radiology. We also discuss informatics related to the increasing imperatives of state and local regulations (such as radiation dose tracking) and quality initiatives.
Liu, Yueyi I.
To date, little has been written about the implementation of utilizing food safety informatics as a technological tool to protect consumers, in real-time, against foodborne illnesses. Food safety outbreaks have become a major public health problem, causing an estimated 48 million illnesses, 128,000 hospitalizations, and 3,000 deaths in the U.S. each year. Yet, government inspectors/regulators that monitor foodservice operations struggle with how to collect, organize, and analyze data; implement, monitor, and enforce safe food systems. Currently, standardized technologies have not been implemented to efficiently establish "near-in-time" or "just-in-time" electronic awareness to enhance early detection of public health threats regarding food safety. To address the potential impact of collection, organization and analyses of data in a foodservice operation, a wireless food safety informatics (FSI) tool was pilot tested at a university student foodservice center. The technological platform in this test collected data every six minutes over a 24 hour period, across two primary domains: time and temperatures within freezers, walk-in refrigerators and dry storage areas. The results of this pilot study briefly illustrated how technology can assist in food safety surveillance and monitoring by efficiently detecting food safety abnormalities related to time and temperatures so that efficient and proper response in "real time" can be addressed to prevent potential foodborne illnesses. PMID:23569605
Tucker, Cynthia A; Larkin, Stephanie N; Akers, Timothy A
Public health surveillance is the ongoing, systematic collection, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination of data regarding a health-related event for use in public health action to reduce morbidity and mortality and to improve health by effective response management and coordination. As new pressures for early detection of disease outbreaks have arisen, particularly for outbreaks of possible bioterrorism (BT) origin, and as electronic health data have become increasingly available, so has the demand for public health situation awareness systems. Although these systems are valuable for early warning of public health emergencies, there remains the cost of developing and managing such large and complex systems and of investigating inevitable false alarms. Whether these systems are dependable and cost effective enough and can demonstrate a significant and indispensable role in detection or prevention of mass casualty events of BT origin remains to be proven. This article will focus on the complexities of design, analysis, implementation and evaluation of public health surveillance and situation awareness systems and, in some cases, will discuss the key technologies being studied in Center for Biosecurity Informatics Research at University of Texas, Health Science Center at Houston.
Mirhaji, Parsa; Zhang, Jiajie; Smith, Jack W.; Madjid, Mohammad; Casscells, Samuel W.; Lillibridge, Scott R.
It is argued that the progress of information processing and information technology changes our societies. Examples are given that there is a significant economic relevance of information technology for medicine and healthcare and for the quality of healthcare as well. In order to adequately pursue the goal of 'Transforming healthcare through innovative use of information technology for the 21st century' (the topic of the 6th International Conference on Health and Medical Informatics Education and of this special issue of the International Journal of Medical Informatics), health professionals are needed who are well-educated in health informatics or medical informatics, respectively. Raising the scope and the quality of education in the field of health and medical informatics would help to raise the quality and efficiency of healthcare. In this context the International Medical Informatics Association (IMIA) and its working group 1 (WG1) on Health and Medical Informatics Education can make a contribution by disseminating information and by elaborating recommendations on courses and programs in health and medical informatics. For this purpose IMIA WG1 has established a WWW site (http://www.imia.org/wg1) with information on health and medical informatics programs and courses. All teachers and institutions are encouraged to submit information about courses and programs offered and to set pointers to their own WWW sites. In addition, a mailing list was installed to facilitate communication between all persons involved in health and medical informatics education. For subscription, a message has to be sent to 'firstname.lastname@example.org'. The body of the message should read 'SUBSCRIBE IMIA-WG1'. PMID:9726488
Objectives To design an interdisciplinary course in health care informatics that enables students to: (1) understand how to incorporate technology into the provision of safe, effective and evidence-based health care; (2) make decisions about the value and ethical application of specific technologies; and (3) appreciate the perspectives and roles of patients and providers when using technology in care. Design An online, interdisciplinary elective course using a distributive learning model was created. Standard courseware was used to manage teaching and to facilitate student/instructor interactions. Interactive, multimedia lectures were developed using Internet communication software. Assessment Upon completion of the course, students demonstrated competency in identifying, analyzing, and applying informatics appropriately in diverse health settings. Conclusion Online education using multimedia software technology is effective in teaching students about health informatics and providing an innovative opportunity for interdisciplinary learning. In light of the growing need for efficient health care informatics training, additional study of this methodology is warranted.
Smith, Scott R.
This article discusses the ongoing development of a health informatics capstone program in a Midwest university from the hiring of a program coordinator to the development of a capstone course, through initial student results. University health informatics programs require a strong academic program to be successful but also require a spirited program coordinator to manage resources and organize an effective capstone course. This is particularly true of health informatics master's programs that support health industry career fields, whereby employers can locate and work with a pool of qualified applicants. The analysis of students’ logs confirms that students’ areas of focus and concern are consistent with course objectives and company work requirements during the work-study portion of the student capstone project. The article further discusses lessons learned and future improvements to be made in the health informatics capstone course.
Hackbarth, Gary; Cata, Teuta; Cole, Laura
Despite enormous efforts to prevent cardiovascular disease (CVD) in the past, it remains the leading cause of death in most countries worldwide. Around two-thirds of these deaths are due to acute events, which frequently occur suddenly and are often fatal before medical care can be given. New strategies for screening and early intervening CVD, in addition to the conventional methods, are therefore needed in order to provide personalized and pervasive healthcare. In this special issue, selected emerging technologies in health informatics for screening and intervening CVDs are reported. These papers include reviews or original contributions on 1) new potential genetic biomarkers for screening CVD outcomes and high-throughput techniques for mining genomic data; 2) new imaging techniques for obtaining faster and higher resolution images of cardiovascular imaging biomarkers such as the cardiac chambers and atherosclerotic plaques in coronary arteries, as well as possible automatic segmentation, identification, or fusion algorithms; 3) new physiological biomarkers and novel wearable and home healthcare technologies for monitoring them in daily lives; 4) new personalized prediction models of plaque formation and progression or CVD outcomes; and 5) quantifiable indices and wearable systems to measure them for early intervention of CVD through lifestyle changes. It is hoped that the proposed technologies and systems covered in this special issue can result in improved CVD management and treatment at the point of need, offering a better quality of life to the patient.
Hartley, Craig J.; Naghavi, Morteza; Parodi, Oberdan; Pattichis, Constantinos S.; Poon, Carmen C. Y.; Zhang, Yuan-Ting
Evolving information technology has had profound effects on business operations and the marketplace. The health care services industry, particularly hospitals, clinics, and medical offices, has historically lagged behind other industries in the implementation of comprehensive, integrated, computerized data management tools. Health care reformers are looking to the promises of the information technology "revolution" as a means of improving systemic efficiency and health care quality. This study discusses the impact of informatics, or information technology, on the delivery of health care services. We present the evolution of informatics and the predicted future benefits of integrated computerized patient records and point-of-care systems. PMID:10162811
Montoya, I D; Carlson, J W
Objective: The article offers a current perspective on medical informatics and health sciences librarianship. Narrative: The authors: (1) discuss how definitions of medical informatics have changed in relation to health sciences librarianship and the broader domain of information science; (2) compare the missions of health sciences librarianship and health sciences informatics, reviewing the characteristics of both disciplines; (3) propose a new definition of health sciences informatics; (4) consider the research agendas of both disciplines and the possibility that they have merged; and (5) conclude with some comments about actions and roles for health sciences librarians to flourish in the biomedical information environment of today and tomorrow. Summary: Boundaries are disappearing between the sources and types of and uses for health information managed by informaticians and librarians. Definitions of the professional domains of each have been impacted by these changes in information. Evolving definitions reflect the increasingly overlapping research agendas of both disciplines. Professionals in these disciplines are increasingly functioning collaboratively as “boundary spanners,” incorporating human factors that unite technology with health care delivery.
Perry, Gerald J.; Roderer, Nancy K.; Assar, Soraya
While interest and activity in health informatics continues to increase worldwide, concerns about the most appropriate educational preparation for practice also arise. Health informatics is an interdisciplinary field that pursues effective use of data, information and knowledge to support effective decision making; in the health field, those…
Dalrymple, Prudence W.; Roderer, Nancy K.
As the emphasis on individuals' active partnership in health care grows, so does the public's need for effective, comprehensible consumer health resources. Consumer health informatics has the potential to provide frameworks and strategies for designing effective health communication tools that empower users and improve their health decisions. This article presents an overview of the consumer health informatics field, discusses promising
Alla Keselman; Robert Logan; Catherine Arnott-Smith; Gondy Leroy; Qing Zeng-Treitler
Informatics is essential for biomedical research. There is, however, a lack of skilled practitioners and training programmes in developing countries. We have established a cross-disciplinary Biomedical Informatics Training programme in South Africa (www.biomedinfo.org) with the support of the Informatics Training for Global Health Programme of the Fogarty International Centre, National Institutes of Health, USA. The Informatics Training Programme is one
Christopher J Seebregts; Maurice Mars; Deshendran Moodley; Hamish SF Fraser; Sarie P Human; Carl Fourie; Yashik Singh; Milan Hajek; Woolaganathan Pillay; Jules-Raymond Tapamo; Hugh Murrell; Tulio de Oliveira; Donnie McGrath; Michael L. Bennish
Federal investment in health information technology has incentivized the adoption of electronic health record systems by physicians and health care organizations; the result has been a massive rise in the collection of patient data in electronic form (i.e. "Big Data"). Health care systems have leveraged Big Data for quality and performance improvements using analytics-the systematic use of data combined with quantitative as well as qualitative analysis to make decisions. Analytics have been utilized in various aspects of health care including predictive risk assessment, clinical decision support, home health monitoring, finance, and resource allocation. Visual analytics is one example of an analytics technique with an array of health care and research applications that are well described in the literature. The proliferation of Big Data and analytics in health care has spawned a growing demand for clinical informatics professionals who can bridge the gap between the medical and information sciences. PMID:24696396
Simpao, Allan F; Ahumada, Luis M; Gálvez, Jorge A; Rehman, Mohamed A
The National Agenda for Public Health Informatics calls for standards in data and knowledge representation within public health, which requires a multi-level framework that links all aspects of public health. METHOD: The literature of public health informatics and public health informatics application were reviewed. A UML-based systems analysis was performed. Face validity of results was evaluated in analyzing the public health domain of lead poisoning. RESULTS: The core class of the UML-based system of public health is the Public Health Domain, which is associated with multiple Problems, for which Actors provide Perspectives. Actors take Actions that define, generate, utilize and/or evaluate Data Sources. The life cycle of the domain is a sequence of activities attributed to its problems that spirals through multiple iterations and realizations within a domain. CONCLUSION: The proposed Public Health Informatics Meta-Framework broadens efforts in applying informatics principles to the field of public health
Orlova, Anna O.; Lehmann, Harold
As the emphasis on individuals' active partnership in health care grows, so does the public's need for effective, comprehensible consumer health resources. Consumer health informatics has the potential to provide frameworks and strategies for designing effective health communication tools that empower users and improve their health decisions. This article presents an overview of the consumer health informatics field, discusses promising approaches to supporting health communication, and identifies challenges plus direction for future research and development. The authors' recommendations emphasize the need for drawing upon communication and social science theories of information behavior, reaching out to consumers via a range of traditional and novel formats, gaining better understanding of the public's health information needs, and developing informatics solutions for tailoring resources to users' needs and competencies. This article was written as a scholarly outreach and leadership project by members of the American Medical Informatics Association's Consumer Health Informatics Working Group. PMID:18436895
Keselman, Alla; Logan, Robert; Smith, Catherine Arnott; Leroy, Gondy; Zeng-Treitler, Qing
As the emphasis on individuals' active partnership in health care grows, so does the public's need for effective, comprehensible consumer health resources. Consumer health informatics has the potential to provide frameworks and strategies for designing effective health communication tools that empower users and improve their health decisions. This article presents an overview of the consumer health informatics field, discusses promising approaches to supporting health communication, and identifies challenges plus direction for future research and development. The authors' recommendations emphasize the need for drawing upon communication and social science theories of information behavior, reaching out to consumers via a range of traditional and novel formats, gaining better understanding of the public's health information needs, and developing informatics solutions for tailoring resources to users' needs and competencies. This article was written as a scholarly outreach and leadership project by members of the American Medical Informatics Association's Consumer Health Informatics Working Group.
Keselman, Alla; Logan, Robert; Smith, Catherine Arnott; Leroy, Gondy; Zeng-Treitler, Qing
The mission of SHINE is to construct an open systems framework for the development of regional community healthcare telematic services that support and add to the strategic business objectives of European healthcare providers and purchasers. This framework will contain a Methodology, that identifies healthcare business processes and develops a supporting IT strategy, and the Open Health Environment. This consists of an architecture and information standards that are 'open' and will be available to any organisation wishing to construct SHINE conform regional healthcare telematic services. Results are: generic models, e.g., regional healthcare business networks, IT strategies; demonstrable, e.g., pilot demonstrators, application and service prototypes; reports, e.g., SHINE Methodology, pilot specifications & evaluations; proposals, e.g., service/interface specifications, standards conformance. PMID:7889752
Kruit, D; Cooper, P A
A decision support system can be approached from two major disciplinary perspectives, those of information systems science (ISS) and artificial intelligence (AI). We present in this chapter an extended ontology for a decision support system in health informatics. The extended ontology is founded on related research in ISS and AI, and on performed case studies in health informatics. The ontology
The AMIA 2001 Spring Congress brought together members of the the public health and informatics communities to develop a national agenda for public health informatics. Discussions of funding and governance; architecture and infrastructure; standards and vocabulary; research, evaluation, and best practices; privacy, confidentiality, and security; and training and workforce resulted in 74 recommendations with two key themes-that all stakeholders need to be engaged in coordinated activities related to public health information architecture, standards, confidentiality, best practices, and research; and that informatics training is needed throughout the public health workforce. Implementation of this consensus agenda will help promote progress in the application of information technology to improve public health. PMID:11687561
Yasnoff, W A; Overhage, J M; Humphreys, B L; LaVenture, M
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has become a major tool in delivery of health services and has had an innovative impact on quality of life. ICT is affecting the way healthcare is delivered to clients. In this paper, we discuss the state of ICT and health informatics in Ghana. We also discuss the state of various relevant infrastructures for the successful implementation of ehealth projects. We analyse the past and present state of health informatics in Ghana, in comparison to other African countries. We also review the challenges facing successful implementation of health informatics projects in Ghana and suggest possible solutions.
Achampong, Emmanuel Kusi
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has become a major tool in delivery of health services and has had an innovative impact on quality of life. ICT is affecting the way healthcare is delivered to clients. In this paper, we discuss the state of ICT and health informatics in Ghana. We also discuss the state of various relevant infrastructures for the successful implementation of ehealth projects. We analyse the past and present state of health informatics in Ghana, in comparison to other African countries. We also review the challenges facing successful implementation of health informatics projects in Ghana and suggest possible solutions. PMID:23569633
Achampong, Emmanuel Kusi
This paper proposes a socio-technical assessment tool (STAT-HI) for health informatics implementations. We explore why even projects allegedly using sound methodologies repeatedly fail to give adequate attention to socio-technical issues, and we present an initial draft of a structured assessment tool for health informatics implementation that encapsulates socio-technical good practice. Further work is proposed to enrich and validate the proposed instrument. This proposal was presented for discussion at a meeting of the UK Faculty of Health Informatics in December 2009.
Scott, Philip J; Briggs, James S
The complexity of health informatics (HI) projects necessitates a solid base of skills and knowledge in a variety of different fields. Case studies are an excellent way to introduce this complexity without overwhelming students. This paper makes a contribution to HI education by presenting a systematic approach to introducing HI concepts to future health informatics professionals (HIPs) and to health care professionals and administrators who need a solid grounding to participate in HI projects.
Kagolovsky, Yuri; Brillinger, Kathryn
The complexity of health informatics (HI) projects necessitates a solid base of skills and knowledge in a variety of different fields. Case studies are an excellent way to introduce this complexity without overwhelming students. This paper makes a contribution to HI education by presenting a systematic approach to introducing HI concepts to future health informatics professionals (HIPs) and to health care professionals and administrators who need a solid grounding to participate in HI projects. PMID:20351869
Kagolovsky, Yuri; Brillinger, Kathryn
The peer-review organizations (PROs) were created by Congress in 1984 to monitor the cost and quality of care received by Medicare beneficiaries. In order to do this, the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) contracted with the PROs through a series of contracts referred to as "Scopes of Work." Under the Fourth Scope of Work, the HCFA initiated the Health Care Quality Improvement Program (HCQIP) in 1990, as an application of the principles of continuous quality improvement. Since then, the PROs have participated with health care providers in cooperative projects to improve the quality of primarily inpatient care provided to Medicare beneficiaries. Through HCFA-supplied administrative data and clinical data abstracted from patient records, the PROs have been able to identify opportunities for improvements in patient care. In May 1995, the HCFA proposed a new Fifth Scope of Work, which will shift the focus of HCQIP from inpatient care projects to projects in outpatient and managed care settings. This article describes the HCQIP process, the types of data used by the PROs to conduct cooperative projects with health care providers, and the informatics challenges in improving the quality of care received by Medicare beneficiaries.
Grant, J B; Hayes, R P; Pates, R D; Elward, K S; Ballard, D J
The 1998 Scientific Symposium of the American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI) was devoted to developing visions for the future of health care and biomedicine and a strategic agenda for health and biomedical informatics in support of those visions. This symposium focus was prompted by the many major changes currently underway in health care delivery, education, and research, as well as in our health and biomedical enterprises, and by the constantly increasing role of information technology in both shaping and enabling these changes. The three audacious goals developed for 2008 are a virtual health care databank, a national health care knowledge base, and a personal clinical health record.
Greenes, Robert A.; Lorenzi, Nancy M.
The paper proposes a zero concept, health-oriented approach to applying informatics to two health care problems: first, the lack of easily understood and used terminology linking health problems and interventions to the concept of "health"; and second, the lack of a unifying principle on which to base all aspects of health care. (DB)
Wittenstrom, John C.
Biomedical informatics in Health (BIH) is the discipline in charge of capturing, handling and using information in health and biomedicine in order to improve the processes involved with assistance and management. Informatic nephrology has appeared as a product of the combination between conventional nephrology with BIH and its development has been considerable in the assistance as well as in the academic field. Regarding the former, there is increasing evidence that informatics technology can make nephrological assistance be better in quality (effective, accessible, safe and satisfying), improve patient's adherence, optimize patient's and practitioner's time, improve physical space and achieve health cost reduction. Among its main elements, we find electronic medical and personal health records, clinical decision support system, tele-nephrology, and recording and monitoring devices. Additionally, regarding the academic field, informatics and Internet contribute to education and research in the nephrological field. In conclusion, informatics nephrology represents a new field which will influence the future of nephrology. PMID:23065430
Musso, Carlos; Aguilera, Jerónimo; Otero, Carlos; Vilas, Manuel; Luna, Daniel; de Quirós, Fernán González Bernaldo
The Professional Health Card Public interest group (Groupement d'Intérêt Public-Carte de professionnel de Santé (GIP-CPS)) was founded in 1993 as a joint initiative by the different parties involved in health care in France: the state, the representatives of the health care professions and the compulsory and complementary health insurance organizations. The CPS system enables safe exchange and electronic sharing of medical data. Via Intranet connections and Extranet hosting of medical files, databases, the CPS system enables health care professionals who access servers to be identified with certainty. For email exhanges, the CPS systems guarantees the sender's identity and capacity. The electronic signature gives legal value to the email. The system also enables confidential email. The health card system (CPS) contributes to making the health service efficient. Shared medical files, health care networks, health warning systems or electronic requests for reimbursement of health insurance expenses all use the CPS system. More than 300,000 health care professionals use it regularly. The freedom of movement of patients throughout Europe has led to the growth of exchanges and information sharing between health professionals in the States of the Union. More and more health professionals will be leaving their own countries to work in foreign countries in the future. It is essential that their freedom of movement is accompanied by the ability to prove their rights to practice. PMID:16385785
The AMIA Public Health Informatics 2011 Conference brought together members of the public health and health informatics communities to revisit the national agenda developed at the AMIA Spring Congress in 2001, assess the progress that has been made in the past decade, and develop recommendations to further guide the field. Participants met in five discussion tracks: technical framework; research and evaluation; ethics; education, professional training, and workforce development; and sustainability. Participants identified 62 recommendations, which clustered into three key themes related to the need to (1) enhance communication and information sharing within the public health informatics community, (2) improve the consistency of public health informatics through common public health terminologies, rigorous evaluation methodologies, and competency-based training, and (3) promote effective coordination and leadership that will champion and drive the field forward. The agenda and recommendations from the meeting will be disseminated and discussed throughout the public health and informatics communities. Both communities stand to gain much by working together to use these recommendations to further advance the application of information technology to improve health.
Goodman, Kenneth W; Gotham, Ivan J; Holmes, John H; Lang, Lisa; Miner, Kathleen; Potenziani, David D; Richards, Janise; Turner, Anne M; Fu, Paul C
Global health reflects the realities of globalization, including worldwide dissemination of infectious and noninfectious public health risks. Global health architecture is complex and better coordination is needed between multiple organizations. Three overlapping themes determine global health action and prioritization: development, security, and public health. These themes play out against a background of demographic change, socioeconomic development, and urbanization. Infectious diseases remain critical factors, but are no longer the major cause of global illness and death. Traditional indicators of public health, such as maternal and infant mortality rates no longer describe the health status of whole societies; this change highlights the need for investment in vital registration and disease-specific reporting. Noncommunicable diseases, injuries, and mental health will require greater attention from the world in the future. The new global health requires broader engagement by health organizations and all countries for the objectives of health equity, access, and coverage as priorities beyond the Millennium Development Goals are set.
Simone, Patricia M.; Davison, Veronica; Slutsker, Laurence
There is an increased level of activity in the biomedical and health informatics world (e-prescribing, electronic health records, personal health records) that, in the near future, will yield a wealth of available data that we can exploit meaningfully to strengthen knowledge building and evidence creation, and ultimately improve clinical and preventive care. The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) 2008 Health Policy Conference was convened to focus and propel discussions about informatics-enabled evidence-based care, clinical research, and knowledge management. Conference participants explored the potential of informatics tools and technologies to improve the evidence base on which providers and patients can draw to diagnose and treat health problems. The paper presents a model of an evidence continuum that is dynamic, collaborative, and powered by health informatics technologies. The conference's findings are described, and recommendations on terminology harmonization, facilitation of the evidence continuum in a “wired” world, development and dissemination of clinical practice guidelines and other knowledge support strategies, and the role of diverse stakeholders in the generation and adoption of evidence are presented.
Detmer, Don E
There is an increased level of activity in the biomedical and health informatics world (e-prescribing, electronic health records, personal health records) that, in the near future, will yield a wealth of available data that we can exploit meaningfully to strengthen knowledge building and evidence creation, and ultimately improve clinical and preventive care. The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) 2008 Health Policy Conference was convened to focus and propel discussions about informatics-enabled evidence-based care, clinical research, and knowledge management. Conference participants explored the potential of informatics tools and technologies to improve the evidence base on which providers and patients can draw to diagnose and treat health problems. The paper presents a model of an evidence continuum that is dynamic, collaborative, and powered by health informatics technologies. The conference's findings are described, and recommendations on terminology harmonization, facilitation of the evidence continuum in a "wired" world, development and dissemination of clinical practice guidelines and other knowledge support strategies, and the role of diverse stakeholders in the generation and adoption of evidence are presented. PMID:20190052
Bloomrosen, Meryl; Detmer, Don E
Health information technology is revolutionizing the way we interact with health-related data. One example of this can be seen in the rising adoption rates of electronic health records by healthcare providers. Nursing plays a vital role in electronic health record adoption, not only because of their numbers but also their intimate understanding of workflow. The success of an electronic health record also relies on how usable the software is for clinicians, and a thorough usability evaluation is needed before implementing a system within an organization. Not all nurses have the knowledge and skills to perform extensive usability testing; therefore, the informatics nurse specialist plays a critical role in the process. This article will discuss core usability principles, provide a framework for applying these concepts, and explore the role of the informatics nurse specialist in electronic health record evaluation. Health information technology is fundamentally changing the clinical practice environment, and many nurses are seeking leadership positions in the field of informatics. As technology and software become more sophisticated, usability principles must be used under theguidance of the informatics nurse specialist to provide a relevant, robust, and well-designed electronic health record to address the needs of the busy clinician. PMID:24473121
Rojas, Crystal L; Seckman, Charlotte A
The European standardisation of health informatics in CEN/TC 251 started in 1990 with the now twenty national standards bodies as members and a political mandate from the European Union and EFTA. The start of the international work in ISO/TC 215 has been welcomed by Europe and there is a lot of co-operation where European pre-standards have often been the basis for the start of international standards work, particularly in the area of medical device communication and for health cards. CEN and ISO also collaborate with other bodies in the field such as DICOM for imaging, IEEE for devices and the US based HL7 organisation for message development. It is important to find the right level of standards work for different aspects. The European CEN work will be maintained for issues like the electronic health record, some security aspects and medication related communication where there are common views and legislation makes European consensus necessary and achievable. The device market on the other hand requires global standards. In addition to multinational co-operation, it is important with a national strategy for the use of standards and adaptation and promotion of specific profiles to achieve interoperability in the still mainly national health systems. PMID:15061554
Klein, Gunnar O
Objective The field of Biomedical and Health Informatics (BMHI) continues to define itself, and there are many educational programs offering ‘informatics’ degrees with varied foci. The goal of this study was to develop a scheme for systematic comparison of programs across the entire BMHI spectrum and to identify commonalities among informatics curricula. Design Guided by several published competency sets, a grounded theory approach was used to develop a program/curricula categorization scheme based on the descriptions of 636 courses offered by 73 public health, nursing, health, medical, and bioinformatics programs in the USA. The scheme was then used to compare the programs in the aforementioned five informatics disciplines. Results The authors developed a Course-Based Informatics Program Categorization (CBIPC) scheme that can be used both to classify coursework for any BMHI educational program and to compare programs from the same or related disciplines. The application of CBIPC scheme to the analysis of public health, nursing, health, medical, and bioinformatics programs reveals distinct intradisciplinary curricular patterns and a common core of courses across the entire BMHI education domain. Limitations The study is based on descriptions of courses from the university's webpages. Thus, it is limited to sampling courses at one moment in time, and classification for the coding scheme is based primarily on course titles and course descriptions. Conclusion The CBIPC scheme combines empirical data about educational curricula from diverse informatics programs and several published competency sets. It also provides a foundation for discussion of BMHI education as a whole and can help define subdisciplinary competencies.
Hemminger, Bradley M
Public health professionals work with a variety of information sources to carry out their everyday activities. In recent years, interactive computational tools have become deeply embedded in such activities. Unlike the early days of computational tool use, the potential of tools nowadays is not limited to simply providing access to information; rather, they can act as powerful mediators of human-information discourse, enabling rich interaction with public health information. If public health informatics tools are designed and used properly, they can facilitate, enhance, and support the performance of complex cognitive activities that are essential to public health informatics, such as problem solving, forecasting, sense-making, and planning. However, the effective design and evaluation of public health informatics tools requires an understanding of the cognitive and perceptual issues pertaining to how humans work and think with information to perform such activities. This paper draws on research that has examined some of the relevant issues, including interaction design, complex cognition, and visual representations, to offer some human-centered design and evaluation considerations for public health informatics tools.
Sedig, Kamran; Parsons, Paul; Dittmer, Mark; Ola, Oluwakemi
Within the framework of a bi-national project, between the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and four Israeli universities, a prototype database of programs and courses in health informatics was implemented. Examined Web sites particularly for courses offered via distance education and discusses results of a content analysis. (Author/LRW)
Lazinger, Susan; Handzel, Ruth
Information and communication technologies (ICT) have been recognized in the past decades as an essential tool for the scientific, economic, and social development of a country. In the health sector these technologies have proven to be a significant factor for an effective and comprehensive planning, management, and estimation of health care. The increased development and use of these technologies in
Ghislain Kouematchoua; Otto Rienhoff
In the wake of the report of the World Health Organisation's Commission on the Social Determinants of Health, Closing the gap in a generation (Marmot 2008), this invited commentary considers the scope for geographical research on global health. We reflect on current work and note future possibilities, particularly those that take a critical perspective on the interplay of globalisation, security and health. PMID:22413171
Brown, Tim; Moon, Graham
Global mental health challenges sit at the frontiers of health care worldwide. The frequency of mental health disorders is increasing, and represents a large portion of the global burden of human disease (DALYs). There are many impeding forces in delivering mental health care globally. The knowledge of what mental health and its diseased states are limits the ability to seek
Melvin G. McInnis; Sofia D. Merajver
Objectives This article seeks to describe the current state of informatics supported collaborative care and to point out areas of future research in this highly interdisciplinary field. Methods In this article, person-centered collaborative care is seen as a concept addressing both the provision of care over organizational borders between health and social care, and within care teams as well as the changed patient/client-care provider relationship characterized by increased patient/client involvement. Results From a health systems perspective, there are several attempts to describe the conceptual and theoretical basis for collaborative care indicating that agreement on core concepts and terminology is difficult. From an informatics perspective, focus is on standardization of clinical content models and terminology to achieve interoperability of information technology systems and to support standardized care pathways. Few examples look into how ad-hoc collaborative care processes can be supported using information technology and informatics standards. Nevertheless, promising examples do exist showing that integrational Information Communication Technology services can be supportive for collaborative care developments. However, the current landscape consists of many fragmented, often technology-driven eHealth solutions targeting specific diagnostic groups in geographically and/or organizationally restricted settings. Conclusions A systematic approach incorporating organizational, clinical, informatics and social science knowledge is needed to perform further research in areas such as virtual team partnerships, new paradigms of care delivery, data and knowledge management as well as its secure sharing. Also organizational and legal aspects need to be further researched in order to facilitate the coordinated provision of health and social care to citizens including self-management, utilizing informatics support in a societal context.
This paper analyses the relationship between globalization, poverty and health, defining and presenting the main characteristics of contemporary globalization. It also establishes the characteristics of poverty today, both globally and regionally. Reviewing articles and world reports, it presents a set of evidence on the relationships between globalization and poverty, as well as their influence on health. Furthermore, it presents the opportunities offered by globalization, through a series of worldwide initiatives prompted by actions among countries under the aegis of the United Nations in general and the WHO in particular, in addition to intergovernmental alliances and coalitions and other civil society representatives. PMID:18813494
Buss, Paulo Marchiori
This paper describes the results of a two year project to design a model curriculum of health care informatics for Dutch higher professional education. The core of the curriculum are sixteen modules which cover the broad range of medical informatics and which are closely related to the profiles of the professions involved (nursing, physiotherapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and dietetics). The curriculum emphasizes the need of using structured data and information to perform tasks in health care delivery and management, for which modern information technology is indispensable. The model curriculum will enable faculty to redesign existing undergraduate programs and to select the contents they see appropriate. In this way we hope that the model curriculum will contribute to an innovative attitude of future graduating health care professionals. A new three year project just has started to develop learning materials using professional health care software based on the sixteen modules of the curriculum.
This debut editorial of Globalization and Health introduces the journal, briefly delineating its goals and objectives and outlines its scope of subject matter. 'Open Access' publishing is expected to become an increasingly important format for peer reviewed academic journals and that Globalization and Health is 'Open Access' is appropriate. The rationale behind starting a journal dedicated to globalization and health is three fold:Firstly: Globalization is reshaping the social geography within which we might strive to create health or prevent disease. The determinants of health - be they a SARS virus or a predilection for fatty foods - have joined us in our global mobility. Driven by economic liberalization and changing technologies, the phenomenon of 'access' is likely to dominate to an increasing extent the unfolding experience of human disease and wellbeing.Secondly: Understanding globalization as a subject matter itself needs certain benchmarks and barometers of its successes and failings. Health is one such barometer. It is a marker of social infrastructure and social welfare and as such can be used to either sound an alarm or give a victory cheer as our interconnectedness hurts and heals the populations we serve.And lastly: In as much as globalization can have an effect on health, it is also true that health and disease has an effect on globalization as exemplified by the existence of quarantine laws and the devastating economic effects of the AIDS pandemic.A balanced view would propose that the effects of globalization on health (and health systems) are neither universally good nor bad, but rather context specific. If the dialogue pertaining to globalization is to be directed or biased in any direction, then it must be this: that we consider the poor first. PMID:15847699
This discussion paper considers the adoption of socio-technical perspectives and their theoretical and practical influence within the discipline of health informatics. The paper highlights the paucity of discussion of the philosophy, theory and concepts of socio-technical perspectives within health informatics. Instead of a solid theoretical base from which to describe, study and understand human-information technology interactions we continue to have fragmented, unelaborated understandings. This has resulted in a continuing focus on technical system performance and increasingly managerial outputs to the detriment of social and technical systems analysis. It has also limited critical analyses and the adaptation of socio-technical approaches beyond the immediate environment to the broader social systems of contemporary society, an expansion which is increasingly mandated in today’s complex health environment.
Whetton, Sue; Georgiou, Andrew
Physicians in the 21st century will increasingly interact in diverse ways with information systems, requiring competence in many aspects of clinical informatics. In recent years, many medical school curricula have added content in information retrieval (search) and basic use of the electronic health record. However, this omits the growing number of other ways that physicians are interacting with information that includes activities such as clinical decision support, quality measurement and improvement, personal health records, telemedicine, and personalized medicine. We describe a process whereby six faculty members representing different perspectives came together to define competencies in clinical informatics for a curriculum transformation process occurring at Oregon Health & Science University. From the broad competencies, we also developed specific learning objectives and milestones, an implementation schedule, and mapping to general competency domains. We present our work to encourage debate and refinement as well as facilitate evaluation in this area.
Hersh, William R; Gorman, Paul N; Biagioli, Frances E; Mohan, Vishnu; Gold, Jeffrey A; Mejicano, George C
The Health Sciences Library and the Department of Health Informatics & Information Management at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis piloted an embedded librarian project in summer 2012. The value and effectiveness of the pilot project was evaluated by analyzing the content of e-mail questions received from the students and the students' answers to the pre- and post-class surveys. The project received positive feedback from the students and course faculty. Librarians collaborating with teaching faculty and interacting one-on-one with students in health information-intensive courses proved to be helpful for student learning. PMID:24528264
Kumar, Sajeesh; Wu, Lin; Reynolds, Rebecca
Advances in informatics, particularly the implementation of electronic health records (EHR), in dentistry have facilitated the exchange of information. The majority of dental schools in North America use the same EHR system, providing an unprecedented opportunity to integrate these data into a repository that can be used for oral health education and research. In 2007, fourteen dental schools formed the Consortium for Oral Health-Related Informatics (COHRI). Since its inception, COHRI has established structural and operational processes, governance and bylaws, and a number of work groups organized in two divisions: one focused on research (data standardization, integration, and analysis), and one focused on education (performance evaluations, virtual standardized patients, and objective structured clinical examinations). To date, COHRI (which now includes twenty dental schools) has been successful in developing a data repository, pilot-testing data integration, and sharing EHR enhancements among the group. This consortium has collaborated on standardizing medical and dental histories, developing diagnostic terminology, and promoting the utilization of informatics in dental education. The consortium is in the process of assembling the largest oral health database ever created. This will be an invaluable resource for research and provide a foundation for evidence-based dentistry for years to come.
Stark, Paul C.; Kalenderian, Elsbeth; White, Joel M.; Walji, Muhammad F.; Stewart, Denice C.L.; Kimmes, Nicole; Meng, Thomas R.; Willis, George P.; DeVries, Ted; Chapman, Robert J.
Advances in health information technology and biomedical informatics have laid the groundwork for significant improvements in healthcare and biomedical research. For instance, Electronic Health Records can help improve the delivery of evidence-based care, enhance quality, and contribute to discoveries and evidence generation. Despite this promise, there are many challenges to achieving the vision and missions of our healthcare and research enterprises. Given the challenges inherent in doing so, institutions are increasingly moving to establish dedicated leadership and governance models charged with designing, deploying and leveraging various information resources to advance research and advanced care activities at AHCs. Some institutions have even created a new leadership position to oversee such activities, such as the Chief Research Information Officer. This panel will include research informatics leaders discussing their experiences from the proverbial trenches as they work to operationalize such cross-mission governance models. Panelists will start by providing an overview their respective positions and environments, discuss their experiences, and share lessons learned through their work at the intersection of clinical and translational research informatics and Health IT.
Embi, Peter J.; Tachinardi, Umberto; Lussier, Yves; Starren, Justin; Silverstein, Jonathan
Over the past 100 years, both diagnostic radiology and radiation therapy have grown from infancy to maturity. Accompanying this growth, the discipline of medical physics has evolved and advanced accordingly. New diagnostic and therapeutic procedures continue to be developed, for example, multidetector computed tomography, multileaf collimation, magnetic resonance imaging, dual-source computed tomography, and intensity-modulated radiation therapy. These are now incorporated in health care facilities throughout the world. Modern technologies such as these provide information on underlying pathology at increasingly higher resolutions, generating more information; thus requiring complex methods of image recording and storage. The management of the storage and retrieval of accumulated information is a domain of informatics. In this short review, we describe the different roles of medical physicists and the effective contribution of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine in the evolution of informatics. Medical physicists have contributed to the development of informatics in numerous ways, such as designing hospital information systems and infrastructures that better serve radiologists and other physicians. In addition, the positive exploitation of knowledge gathered in medical settings and effective interdisciplinary collaborations between scientists of different backgrounds have increased. These developments provide future medical physicists the opportunity to develop strategic roles in information technology and thus better contribute to health care. PMID:18293569
Kagadis, George C; Nagy, Paul; Langer, Steve; Flynn, Michael; Starkschall, George
\\u000a Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) seeks to achieve and maintain a state of “readiness” within the community of response\\u000a partners to detect, respond to, and mitigate health emergencies, such as large-scale infectious disease outbreaks. The activities,\\u000a workflows, and information exchanges in this process are optimized when embedded as a part of routine public health practice.\\u000a Information systems supporting PHEP “readiness”
Ivan J. Gotham; Debra L. Sottolano; Linh H. Le; Michael J. Primeau; Loretta A. Santilli; Geraldine S. Johnson; Stephanie E. Ostrowski; Mary E. Hennessey
Open-access peer-reviewed journals continue to grow in number and in scope, and those dealing with the future of public health are no exception. One of the latest is Globalization and Health, which provides Ã¢ÂÂa platform for research, knowledge sharing and debate on the topic of globalization and its effects on health, both positive and negative.Ã¢ÂÂ With such a broad range, it is no surprise that the journal has included articles on the tobacco industry, intellectual property rights, the effect of trade agreements on health, and the dissemination of Western diets across the globe. The journal currently publishes everything from book reviews to debate articles, so interested parties should definitely take a look at their work and requirements for publication consideration.
The literature suggests that there is a need for measuring public health informatics (PHI) competency to further understand whether current educational modules and modalities meet the needs of PHI practitioners and researchers to perform their jobs more effectively, particularly for mid-tier practitioners that constitute the majority of public health workers in the USA. The present study seeks to update current knowledge of the perceptions and experiences of PHI competencies proposed by the U.S. Council on Linkage in Public Health specifically for mid-tier PH practitioners and researchers. The results were collected and analyzed by using a Web-based survey (WBS) method administered among both practitioners and researchers. Researchers first compiled a draft list of candidate competency set by incorporating existing competency areas provided by: 1) the Council on Linkage; and by 2) those proposed by the USA's Centers for Disease Control CDC Public Health Informatics Work Group. Nine sets of competency statements with 120 competency items and demographic information of respondents were included in the WBS. The online survey instruments were pilot-tested accordingly to incorporate feedback from respondents of the pilot. Fifty-six subjects were recruited from PH experts who were: 1) members of the Health Informatics Information Technology (HIIT) group of American Public Health Association; and, 2) members from the Community of Science (COS) Website who were the first authors published in the PHI field from PubMed. The sample included diverse backgrounds of PHI workers. They expressed an increased need for training to improve their PHI competencies. Respondents agreed that four competency sets should be adequately represented, including Leadership and System Thinking Skills (82%), followed by Financial Planning and Management Skills (79%), Community Dimensions of Practice Skills (77%), and Policy Development/Program Planning Skills (63%). The findings parallel current literature indicating that there exists an expressed need for clarification of the public health practitioner's job-specific informatics competency. Findings of expressed needs for basic computer literacy training and community-based practice were consistent with those of the literature. Additional training and resources should be allocated to address the competency of leadership, management, community-based practice and policy advocacy skills for mid-tier public health practitioners to perform their jobs more effectively. Only when healthcare organizations properly identify PHI competency needs will public health practitioners likely improve their overall informatics skills while improving diversification for contribution across multiple settings. PMID:22447878
Hsu, Chiehwen Ed; Dunn, Kim; Juo, Hsin-Hsuan; Danko, Rick; Johnson, Drew; Mas, Francisco Soto; Sheu, Jiunn-Jye
In addition to the meaning as Health Informatics Society of Australia, HISA is the acronym used for the new European Standard: Health Informatics - Service Architecture. This EN 12967 standard has been developed by CEN - the federation of 29 national standards bodies in Europe. This standard defines the essential elements of a Service Oriented Architecture and a methodology for localization particularly useful for large healthcare organizations. It is based on the Open Distributed Processing (ODP) framework from ISO 10746 and contains the following parts: Part 1: Enterprise viewpoint. Part 2: Information viewpoint. Part 3: Computational viewpoint. This standard is now also the starting point for the consideration for an International standard in ISO/TC 215. The basic principles with a set of health specific middleware services as a common platform for various applications for regional health information systems, or large integrated hospital information systems, are well established following a previous prestandard. Examples of large scale deployments in Sweden, Denmark and Italy are described. PMID:17911763
Klein, Gunnar O; Sottile, Pier Angelo; Endsleff, Frederik
The term 'globalization' describes the integration of economic systems through improved communication, but it also represents increased insecurity for those with few resources--particularly refugees. This article examines why people migrate, their numbers, constraints on their movement and their particular health care needs. Immigrants have much to contribute to their recipient countries, but at some loss to their homelands. Both economically and morally, more liberal immigration policies would be beneficial. Policies towards asylum seekers should not be more restrictive in the aftermath of 11 September 2001 and detention should be the exception rather than the rule. Globalization should be managed so as to improve people's lives throughout the world. PMID:11917962
Bridging levels of scale and context are key problems for integrating Bio- and Health Informatics. Formal, logic-based ontologies using expressive formalisms are naturally "fractal" and provide new methods to support these aims. The basic notion of composition can be used to bridge scales; axioms can be used to carry implicit information; specific context markers can be included in definitions; and a hierarchy of semantic links can be used to represent subtle differences in point of view. Experience with OpenGALEN, the UK Drug Ontology and new experiments with the Gene Ontology and Foundational Model of Anatomy suggest that these are powerful tools provide practical solutions.
Rector, Alan L.; Rogers, Jeremy; Roberts, Angus; Wroe, Chris
The number of health-related websites has proliferated over the past few years. Health information consumers confront a myriad of health related resources on the internet that have varying levels of quality and are not always easy to comprehend. There is thus a need to help health information consumers to bridge the gap between access to information and information understanding—i.e. to help consumers understand health related web-based resources so that they can act upon it. At the same time health information consumers are becoming not only more involved in their own health care but also more information technology minded. One way to address this issue is to provide consumers with tailored information that is contextualized and personalized e.g. directly relevant and easily comprehensible to the person's own health situation. This paper presents a current trend in Consumer Health Informatics which focuses on theory-based design and development of contextualized and personalized tools to allow the evolving consumer with varying backgrounds and interests to use online health information efficiently. The proposed approach uses a theoretical framework of communication in order to support the consumer's capacity to understand health-related web-based resources.
Alpay, Laurence; Verhoef, John; Xie, Bo; Te'eni, Dov; Zwetsloot-Schonk, J.H.M.
Integrated Vehicle Health Management (IVHM) systems have been pursued as highly integrated systems that include smart sensors, diagnostic and prognostics software for assessments of real-time and life-cycle vehicle health information. Inclusive to such a system is the requirement to monitor the environmental health within the vehicle and the occupants of the vehicle. In this regard an enterprise approach to informatics is used to develop a methodology entitled, Comprehensive Environmental Informatics System (CEIS). The hardware and software technologies integrated into this system will be embedded in the vehicle subsystems, and maintenance operations, to provide both real-time and life-cycle health information of the environment within the vehicle cabin and of its occupants. This comprehensive information database will enable informed decision making and logistics management. One key element of the CEIS is interoperability for data acquisition and archive between environment and human system monitoring. With comprehensive components the data acquired in this system will use model based reasoning systems for subsystem and system level managers, advanced on-board and ground-based mission and maintenance planners to assess system functionality. Knowledge databases of the vehicle health state will be continuously updated and reported for critical failure modes, and routinely updated and reported for life cycle condition trending. Sufficient intelligence, including evidence-based engineering practices which are analogous to evidencebased medicine practices, will be included in the CEIS to result in more rapid recognition of off-nominal operation to enable quicker corrective actions. This will result from better information (rather than just data) for improved crew/operator situational awareness, which will produce significant vehicle and crew safety improvements, as well as increasing the chance for mission success, future mission planning as well as training. Other benefits include improved reliability, increase safety in operations and cost of operations. The cost benefits stem from significantly reduced processing and operations manpower, predictive maintenance for systems and subjects. The improvements in vehicle functionality and cost will result from increased prognostic and diagnostic capability due to the detailed total human exploration system health knowledge from CEIS. A collateral benefit is that there will be closer observations of the vehicle occupants as wrist watch sized devices are worn for continuous health monitoring. Additional database acquisition will stem from activities in countermeasure practices to ensure peak performance capability by occupants of the vehicle. The CEIS will provide data from advanced sensing technologies and informatics modeling which will be useful in problem troubleshooting, and improving NASA s awareness of systems during operation.
Nall, Mark E.
There is a range of organisations with responsibility for information standards development within Australia. These include Standards Australia, which is formally linked to the International Organisation for Standards (ISO), the National Health Information Management Group, which deals with the government sector and several statutory organisations such as the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare and the National Centre for Classification in Health. The different constituencies involved with each of these organisations, the scope of healthcare informatics and the rate of organisational and technological change in the industry present a significant challenge in ensuring that the standard setting process is highly visible, responsive and capable of demonstrating its value through effective implementation. Creating awareness and ensuring broad dissemination of healthcare informatics standards is a key component in meeting this challenge. This can operate at a number of levels from strategic to operational. At the strategic level, it requires active engagement and commitment of the key decision-makers, both political and professional. This may require directly lobbying and promoting the benefits of standardisation to those decision-makers but can be achieved even more effectively by creating industry awareness and demand through carefully targeted presentations on the impact of standards to broader health industry forums. At the tactical level, the standards development medium itself can be used to engage and gain commitment from government, professionals, vendors and the health industry by operating as an inclusive, open and effective process. At the operational level, there is the opportunity for much more efficient use of technology to create awareness of both these processes and their outcomes. The establishment in Australia of a web enabled National Health Information Knowledge base built around ISO standards is one example of the type of development which will assist in the acceleration of awareness of standards and standardisation, which is needed to cope with the increasing demand. PMID:9600403
User-centered design (UCD) is well recognized as an effective human factor engineering strategy for designing ease of use in the total customer experience with products and information technology that has been applied specifically to health care information technology systems. We conducted a literature review to analyze the current research regarding the use of UCD methods and principles to support the development or evaluation of diabetes-related consumer health informatics technology (CHIT) initiatives. Findings indicate that (1) UCD activities have been applied across the technology development life cycle stages, (2) there are benefits to incorporating UCD to better inform CHIT development in this area, and (3) the degree of adoption of the UCD process is quite uneven across diabetes CHIT studies. In addition, few to no studies report on methods used across all phases of the life cycle with process detail. To address that void, the Appendix provides an illustrative case study example of UCD techniques across development stages.
LeRouge, Cynthia; Wickramasinghe, Nilmini
How do global diseases get eradicated? It's a fascinating query and one that is explored in-depth on this website sponsored by the Center for Disease Control and Emory University. The site focuses on three diseases (smallpox, Guinea worm, and malaria) to create a portrait of the various resources and individuals that were instrumental in addressing these epidemics. Each section contains oral histories, photographs, documents, and other media. The Malaria Control section is fascinating as it contains a detailed profile of the ways in which the U.S. Public Health Service dealt with this problem in the southeastern states. From here, visitors can click on Media to watch an animated film titled, "Criminal at Large,Ã¢ÂÂ and several interesting training films. It's easy to see how these resources might be used in history of science courses or by public health professionals interested in such matters.
The advances in electronic medical records (EMRs) and bioinformatics (BI) represent two significant trends in healthcare. The widespread adoption of EMR systems and the completion of the Human Genome Project developed the technologies for data acquisition, analysis, and visualization in two different domains. The massive amount of data from both clinical and biology domains is expected to provide personalized, preventive, and predictive healthcare services in the near future. The integrated use of EMR and BI data needs to consider four key informatics areas: data modeling, analytics, standardization, and privacy. Bioclinical data warehouses integrating heterogeneous patient-related clinical or omics data should be considered. The representative standardization effort by the Clinical Bioinformatics Ontology (CBO) aims to provide uniquely identified concepts to include molecular pathology terminologies. Since individual genome data are easily used to predict current and future health status, different safeguards to ensure confidentiality should be considered. In this paper, we focused on the informatics aspects of integrating the EMR community and BI community by identifying opportunities, challenges, and approaches to provide the best possible care service for our patients and the population. PMID:24465229
Choi, In Young; Kim, Tae-Min; Kim, Myung Shin; Mun, Seong K; Chung, Yeun-Jun
The BioHealthBase Bioinformatics Resource Center (BRC) (www.biohealthbase.org) is a public bio- informatics database and analysis resource for the study of specific biodefense and public health pathogens—Influenza virus, Francisella tularensis, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Microsporidia species and ricin toxin. The BioHealthBase serves as an extensive integrated repository of data imported from public databases, data derived from various computational algorithms and information curated from
Burke Squires; Catherine Macken; Adolfo Garcia-sastre; Shubhada Godbole; Jyothi Noronha; Victoria Hunt; Roger Chang; Christopher N. Larsen; Ed Klem; Kevin Biersack; Richard H. Scheuermann
Health has long been intertwined with the foreign policies of states. In recent years, however, global health issues have risen to the highest levels of international politics and have become accepted as legitimate issues in foreign policy. This elevated political priority is in many ways a welcome development for proponents of global health, and it has resulted in increased funding for and attention to select global health issues. However, there has been less examination of the tensions that characterize the relationship between global health and foreign policy and of the potential effects of linking global health efforts with the foreign-policy interests of states. In this paper, the authors review the relationship between global health and foreign policy by examining the roles of health across 4 major components of foreign policy: aid, trade, diplomacy, and national security. For each of these aspects of foreign policy, the authors review current and historical issues and discuss how foreign-policy interests have aided or impeded global health efforts. The increasing relevance of global health to foreign policy holds both opportunities and dangers for global efforts to improve health.
Feldbaum, Harley; Lee, Kelley; Michaud, Joshua
Health has long been intertwined with the foreign policies of states. In recent years, however, global health issues have risen to the highest levels of international politics and have become accepted as legitimate issues in foreign policy. This elevated political priority is in many ways a welcome development for proponents of global health, and it has resulted in increased funding for and attention to select global health issues. However, there has been less examination of the tensions that characterize the relationship between global health and foreign policy and of the potential effects of linking global health efforts with the foreign-policy interests of states. In this paper, the authors review the relationship between global health and foreign policy by examining the roles of health across 4 major components of foreign policy: aid, trade, diplomacy, and national security. For each of these aspects of foreign policy, the authors review current and historical issues and discuss how foreign-policy interests have aided or impeded global health efforts. The increasing relevance of global health to foreign policy holds both opportunities and dangers for global efforts to improve health. PMID:20423936
Feldbaum, Harley; Lee, Kelley; Michaud, Joshua
Participatory Design (PD) methods in the field of health informatics have mainly been applied to the development of small-scale systems with homogeneous user groups in local settings. Meanwhile, health service organizations are becoming increasingly large and complex in character, making it necessary to extend the scope of the systems that are used for managing data, information and knowledge. This study reports participatory action research on the development of a PD framework for large-scale system design. The research was conducted in a public health informatics project aimed at developing a system for 175,000 users. A renewed PD framework was developed in response to six major limitations experienced to be associated with the existing methods. The resulting framework preserves the theoretical grounding, but extends the toolbox to suit applications in networked health service organizations. Future research should involve evaluations of the framework in other health service settings where comprehensive HISs are developed. PMID:17981514
Pilemalm, Sofie; Timpka, Toomas
While much attention has been paid to the short-term impact that widespread adoption of health information technology (health IT) will have on the healthcare system, there is a corresponding need to look at the long-term effects that extant policies may have on health IT system resilience, innovation, and related ethical, social/legal issues. The American Medical Informatics Association's 2010 Health Policy Conference was convened to further the national discourse on the issues surrounding these longer-term considerations. Conference participants self-selected into three broad categories: resilience in healthcare and health IT; ethical, legal, and social challenges; and innovation, adoption, and sustainability. The discussions about problem areas lead to findings focusing on the lack of encouragement for long-term IT innovation that may result from current health IT policies; the potential impact of uneven adoption of health IT based on the exclusions of the current financial incentives; the weaknesses of contingency and risk mitigation planning that threaten system resilience; and evolving standards developed in response to challenges relating to the security, integrity, and availability of electronic health information. This paper discusses these findings and also offers recommendations that address the interwoven topics of innovation, resilience, and adoption. The goal of this paper is to encourage public and private sector organizations that have a role in shaping health information policy to increase attention to developing a national strategy that assures that health IT innovation and resilience are not impeded by shorter-term efforts to implement current approaches emphasizing adoption and meaningful use of electronic health records. PMID:22037887
McGowan, Julie J; Cusack, Caitlin M; Bloomrosen, Meryl
In this introduction to volume 32 of Epidemiologic Reviews, the authors highlight the diversity and complexity of global health concerns, and they frame the 12 articles included in this issue within the diverse topics of research in this emerging and ever-expanding field. The authors emphasize the need for ongoing research related to the methods used in global health and for comprehensive surveillance, and they offer suggestions for future directions in global health research.
Quinn, Thomas C.; Samet, Jonathan M.
The rapid advancement of genome technologies holds great promise for improving the quality and speed of clinical and public health laboratory investigations and for decreasing their cost. The latest generation of genome DNA sequencers can provide highly detailed and robust information on disease-causing microbes, and in the near future these technologies will be suitable for routine use in national, regional, and global public health laboratories. With additional improvements in instrumentation, these next- or third-generation sequencers are likely to replace conventional culture-based and molecular typing methods to provide point-of-care clinical diagnosis and other essential information for quicker and better treatment of patients. Provided there is free-sharing of information by all clinical and public health laboratories, these genomic tools could spawn a global system of linked databases of pathogen genomes that would ensure more efficient detection, prevention, and control of endemic, emerging, and other infectious disease outbreaks worldwide.
Brown, Eric W.; Detter, Chris; Gerner-Smidt, Peter; Gilmour, Matthew W.; Harmsen, Dag; Hendriksen, Rene S.; Hewson, Roger; Heymann, David L.; Johansson, Karin; Ijaz, Kashef; Keim, Paul S.; Koopmans, Marion; Kroneman, Annelies; Wong, Danilo Lo Fo; Lund, Ole; Palm, Daniel; Sawanpanyalert, Pathom; Sobel, Jeremy; Schlundt, J?rgen
Biomedical informatics involves a core set of methodologies that can provide a foundation for crossing the "translational barriers" associated with translational medicine. To this end, the fundamental aspects of biomedical informatics (e.g., bioinformatics, imaging informatics, clinical informatics, and public health informatics) may be essential in helping improve the ability to bring basic research findings to the bedside, evaluate the efficacy of interventions across communities, and enable the assessment of the eventual impact of translational medicine innovations on health policies. Here, a brief description is provided for a selection of key biomedical informatics topics (Decision Support, Natural Language Processing, Standards, Information Retrieval, and Electronic Health Records) and their relevance to translational medicine. Based on contributions and advancements in each of these topic areas, the article proposes that biomedical informatics practitioners ("biomedical informaticians") can be essential members of translational medicine teams.
The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) is planning interprofessional training in electronic health records (EHRs) and medical informatics. Training will be integrated throughout the curricula and will include seminars on broad concepts supplemented with online modules, didactic lectures, and hands-on experiences. Training will prepare future health professionals to use EHRs, evidence-based medicine, medical decision support, and point-of-care tools to reduce errors, improve standards of care, address Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act requirements and accreditation standards, and promote appropriate documentation to enable data retrieval for clinical research. UAMS will ensure that graduates are ready for the rapidly evolving practice environment created by the HITECH Act.
Hart, Jan K; Newton, Bruce W; Boone, Steven E
Medical informatics is defined as the scientific discipline concerned with the systematic processing of data, information and knowledge in medicine and health care. The domain of medical informatics (including health informatics), its aim, methods and tools, and its relevance to other disciplines in medicine and health sciences are outlined. It is recognized that one of the major tasks of medical
A. Hasman; R. Haux; A. Albert
The grounds for global solidarity have been theorized and conceptualized in recent years, and many have argued that we need a global concept of solidarity. But the question remains: what can motivate efforts of the international community and nation-states? Our focus is the grounding of solidarity with respect to global inequities in health. We explore what considerations could motivate acts of global solidarity in the specific context of health migration, and sketch briefly what form this kind of solidarity could take. First, we argue that the only plausible conceptualization of persons highlights their interdependence. We draw upon a conception of persons as 'ecological subjects' and from there illustrate what such a conception implies with the example of nurses migrating from low and middle-income countries to more affluent ones. Next, we address potential critics who might counter any such understanding of current international politics with a reference to real-politik and the insights of realist international political theory. We argue that national governments--while not always or even often motivated by moral reasons alone--may nevertheless be motivated to acts of global solidarity by prudential arguments. Solidarity then need not be, as many argue, a function of charitable inclination, or emergent from an acknowledgment of injustice suffered, but may in fact serve national and transnational interests. We conclude on a positive note: global solidarity may be conceptualized to helpfully address global health inequity, to the extent that personal and transnational interdependence are enough to motivate national governments into action. PMID:22827320
Eckenwiler, Lisa; Straehle, Christine; Chung, Ryoa
Medical informatics is a new knowledge domain of computer and information science, engineering and technology in all fields of health and medicine, including research, education and practice. Medical informatics has evolved over the past 30 years as medicine learned to exploit the extraordinary capabilities of the electronic digital computer to better meet its complex information needs. The first articles on this subject appeared in the 1950s, the number of publications rapidly increased in the 1960s and medical informatics was identified as a new specialty in the 1970s.
Collen, Morris F.
Background The Health Quality Measures Format (HQMF) is a Health Level 7 (HL7) standard for expressing computable Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs). Creating tools to process HQMF queries in clinical databases will become increasingly important as the United States moves forward with its Health Information Technology Strategic Plan to Stages 2 and 3 of the Meaningful Use incentive program (MU2 and MU3). Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2) is one of the analytical databases used as part of the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC)’s Query Health platform to move toward this goal. Objective Our goal is to integrate i2b2 with the Query Health HQMF architecture, to prepare for other HQMF use-cases (such as MU2 and MU3), and to articulate the functional overlap between i2b2 and HQMF. Therefore, we analyze the structure of HQMF, and then we apply this understanding to HQMF computation on the i2b2 clinical analytical database platform. Specifically, we develop a translator between two query languages, HQMF and i2b2, so that the i2b2 platform can compute HQMF queries. Methods We use the HQMF structure of queries for aggregate reporting, which define clinical data elements and the temporal and logical relationships between them. We use the i2b2 XML format, which allows flexible querying of a complex clinical data repository in an easy-to-understand domain-specific language. Results The translator can represent nearly any i2b2-XML query as HQMF and execute in i2b2 nearly any HQMF query expressible in i2b2-XML. This translator is part of the freely available reference implementation of the QueryHealth initiative. We analyze limitations of the conversion and find it covers many, but not all, of the complex temporal and logical operators required by quality measures. Conclusions HQMF is an expressive language for defining quality measures, and it will be important to understand and implement for CQM computation, in both meaningful use and population health. However, its current form might allow complexity that is intractable for current database systems (both in terms of implementation and computation). Our translator, which supports the subset of HQMF currently expressible in i2b2-XML, may represent the beginnings of a practical compromise. It is being pilot-tested in two Query Health demonstration projects, and it can be further expanded to balance computational tractability with the advanced features needed by measure developers.
Murphy, Shawn N
Global trends in women's health have to be looked at in the broader context of the definition of health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. Our species is undergoing a historical bio-social evolution, with women positioned to have more power over their bodies and their lives. The
M. F. Fathalla
Radiology and public health have an emerging opportunity to collaborate, in which radiology's vast supply of imaging data can be integrated into public health information systems for epidemiologic assessments and responses to population health problems. Fueling the linkage of radiology and public health include (i) the transition from analog film to digital formats, enabling flexible use of radiologic data; (ii)
Daniel J. Mollura; John A. Carrino; Diane L. Matuszak; Zaruhi R. Mnatsakanyan; John Eng; Protagoras Cutchis; Steven M. Babin; Carol Sniegoski; Joseph S. Lombardo
Like many forms of education, health professions education is increasingly competency-based. At the same time, there is growing use of e-learning technologies, which can be linked to competencies via emerging e-learning standards. Health care has been slow to adopt competencies and e-learning standards. We report our efforts to facilitate access to competencies and e-learning content in the medical informatics domain, linked by content-competency associations, based on standards developed by the MedBiquitous Consortium. We demonstrate that such standards can be successfully used and their implementation in other domains is warranted.
Hersh, William R.; Bhupatiraju, Ravi Teja; Greene, Peter S.; Smothers, Valerie; Cohen, Cheryl
Clinical research informatics is the rapidly evolving sub-discipline within biomedical informatics that focuses on developing new informatics theories, tools, and solutions to accelerate the full translational continuum: basic research to clinical trials (T1), clinical trials to academic health center practice (T2), diffusion and implementation to community practice (T3), and ‘real world’ outcomes (T4). We present a conceptual model based on an informatics-enabled clinical research workflow, integration across heterogeneous data sources, and core informatics tools and platforms. We use this conceptual model to highlight 18 new articles in the JAMIA special issue on clinical research informatics.
The intersection of national security, foreign policy, and health has been explored in a number of arenas, but little attention has been devoted to the ethical issues surrounding the global health impact of current counterterrorism policy and practice. In this essay, we'll review a range of harms to population health traceable to counterterrorism operations, identify concerns involving moral agency and responsibility-specifically of humanitarian health workers, military medical personnel, and national security officials and operatives-and highlight two interrelated policy issues: the need for a conception of national security that incorporates a cosmopolitan concern for health, and the need for shared health governance, including governance of activities affecting health. PMID:24821246
Eckenwiler, Lisa; Hunt, Matthew
Online courses will play a key role in the high-volume Informatics education required to train the personnel that will be necessary to fulfill the health IT needs of the country. Online courses can cause feelings of isolation in students. A common way to address these feelings is to hold synchronous online “chats” for students. Conventional chats, however, can be confusing and impose a high extrinsic cognitive load on their participants that hinders the learning process. In this paper we present a qualitative analysis that shows the causes of this high cognitive load and our solution through the use of a moderated chat system.
Herskovic, Jorge R.; Goodwin, J. Caleb; Bozzo Silva, Pamela A.; Willcockson, Irmgard; Franklin, Amy
Information systems are increasingly important for measuring and improving health care quality. A number of integrated health care delivery systems use advanced information systems and integrated decision support to carry out quality assurance activities, but none as large as the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). The VHA's Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI) is a large-scale, multidisciplinary quality improvement initiative designed to ensure excellence in all areas where VHA provides health care services, including inpatient, outpatient, and long-term care settings. In this paper, we describe the role of information systems in the VHA QUERI process, highlight the major information systems critical to this quality improvement process, and discuss issues associated with the use of these systems.
Hynes, Denise M.; Perrin, Ruth A.; Rappaport, Steven; Stevens, Joanne M.; Demakis, John G.
Global health policy is now being influenced by an ever-increasing number of nonstate and non-intergovernmental actors to include influential foundations, multinational corporations, multi-sectoral partnerships, and civil society organizations. This article reviews how globalization is a key driver for the ongoing evolution of global health governance. It describes the massive increases in bilateral and multilateral investments in global health and it highlights the current global and US architecture for performing global health programs. The article closes describing some of the challenges and prospects that characterize global health governance today. PMID:21628057
Kelley, Patrick W
The prevailing view of medical informatics as a primarily subservient discipline in health care is challenged. Developments in both general informatics and medical informatics are described to identify desirable properties of modeling languages and tools needed to solve key problems in the application field. For progress in medical informatics, it is considered essential to develop far more formal modeling languages, modeling techniques, and tools. A major aim of this development should be to expel ambiguity from concepts essential to medicine, positioning medical informatics “at the heart of health care.”
van der Maas, Arnoud A.F.; Ten Hoopen, A. Johannes; Ter Hofstede, Arthur H.M.
The prevailing view of medical informatics as a primarily subservient discipline in health care is challenged. Developments in both general informatics and medical informatics are described to identify desirable properties of modeling languages and tools needed to solve key problems in the application field. For progress in medical informatics, it is considered essential to develop far more formal modeling languages, modeling techniques, and tools. A major aim of this development should be to expel ambiguity from concepts essential to medicine, positioning medical informatics "at the heart of health care." PMID:11230381
van der Maas, A A; ten Hoopen, A J; ter Hofstede, A H
All over the world, countries more and more take part in the international society and economy. To meet the stringent requirements of this globalization asks for internationally oriented and well-educated graduates. A major challenge of academia thus lies in qualifying graduates for international positions in this new world. A crucial element in the training and education of tomorrow's medical informatics specialists is exposure to health care systems across national borders. In this contribution, we report on the international aspects of and experiences with an inter-university course for medical informatics students on hospital information systems, in particular on their strategic information management. From 2001 onwards, this course was offered jointly for students of the University of Amsterdam, the University of Heidelberg/University of Applied Sciences Heilbronn and the University of Health Informatics and Technology, Tyrol (UMIT). Based on our experiences, future establishment of international courses in the medical and health informatics field is recommended. PMID:15491931
Jaspers, M W M; Ammenwerth, E; Ter Burg, W J P P; Kaiser, F; Haux, R
The activities of the Dutch National Aerospace Laboratory Informatics Division are outlined. These include research in electronics, applied mathematics, computer programming, and data operations. Ground systems in support of aircraft and spacecraft operat...
To address the growing needs of global health, sensitive, low cost, simple, and portable medical diagnostic point of care detectors are needed. Many medical diagnostic assays are based on optical detection in devices that are suitable only for laboratory environments. We describe here a multi-wavelength fluorometer based on a simple, low cost imaging platform with sensitivity and capability similar or superior to several current commercial devices.
In 2011, the US federal government implemented an oversight program to encourage the adoption and meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). Otolaryngologists may receive as much as $44,000 under Medicare or $63,750 under Medicaid as part of this law. To receive this full benefit, otolaryngologists must acquire a certified EHR and demonstrate stage 1 meaningful use requirements by the end of 2012. Furthermore, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT intends to advance meaningful use requirements to stage 2 (estimated to go in effect in 2014) and stage 3 requirements. This commentary discusses updated recommendations from the Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Medical Informatics Committee for implementing meaningful use of EHRs, receiving incentive payments, and preparing for potential stage 2 and stage 3 requirements. PMID:22241788
Sun, Gordon H; Eisenberg, Lee D; Ermini, Edward B; Lee, K J; Nielsen, David R; Rubin, Koryn Y; Das, Subinoy
Usability issues with products such as Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are of global interest to nursing informaticists. Although improvements in patient safety, clinical productivity and effectiveness are possible when usability principles and practices are in place, most organizations do not embrace usability. This paper presents a new Health Usability Maturity Model consisting of 5 phases: unrecognized, preliminary, implemented, integrated and strategic. Within each level various aspects are discussed including focus on users, management, education, resources, processes and infrastructure. Nurse informaticists may use this new model as a guide for assessing their organization’s level of usability and transitioning to the next level. Using tactics outlined here, nurse informaticists may also serve as catalysts for change and lead efforts to improve the user experience in organizations across industry, academe and healthcare settings.
Staggers, Nancy; Rodney, Melanie
Despite the likelihood of poor quality data flowing from clinical information systems to public health information systems, current policies and practices are pushing for the adoption and use of even greater numbers of electronic data feeds. However, using poor data can lead to poor decision-making outcomes in public health. Therefore public health informatics professionals need to assess, and periodically re-evaluate, the quality of electronic data and their sources. Unfortunately there is currently a paucity of tools and strategies in use across public health agencies. Our Center of Excellence in Public Health Informatics is working to develop and disseminate tools and strategies for supporting on-going assessment of data quality and solutions for overcoming data quality challenges. In this article, we outline the need for better data quality assessment and our approach to the development of new tools and strategies. In other words, public health informatics professionals need to ask questions about the electronic data received by public health agencies, and we hope to create tools and strategies to help informaticians ask questions that will lead to improved population health outcomes.
Dixon, Brian E.; Grannis, Shaun J.
Background Current definitions of 'global health' lack specificity about the term 'global'. This debate presents and discusses existing definitions of 'global health' and a common problem inherent therein. It aims to provide a way forward towards an understanding of 'global health' while avoiding redundancy. The attention is concentrated on the dialectics of different concepts of 'global' in their application to malnutrition; HIV, tuberculosis & malaria; and maternal mortality. Further attention is payed to normative objectives attached to 'global health' definitions and to paradoxes involved in attempts to define the field. Discussion The manuscript identifies denotations of 'global' as 'worldwide', as 'transcending national boundaries' and as 'holistic'. A fourth concept of 'global' as 'supraterritorial' is presented and defined as 'links between the social determinants of health anywhere in the world'. The rhetorical power of the denotations impacts considerably on the object of 'global health', exemplified in the context of malnutrition; HIV, tuberculosis & malaria; and maternal mortality. The 'global' as 'worldwide', as 'transcending national boundaries' and as 'holistic' house contradictions which can be overcome by the fourth concept of 'global' as 'supraterritorial'. The 'global-local-relationship' inherent in the proposed concept coheres with influential anthropological and sociological views despite the use of different terminology. At the same time, it may be assembled with other views on 'global' or amend apparently conflicting ones. The author argues for detaching normative objectives from 'global health' definitions to avoid so called 'entanglement-problems'. Instead, it is argued that the proposed concept constitutes an un-euphemistical approach to describe the inherently politicised field of 'global health'. Summary While global-as-worldwide and global-as-transcending-national-boundaries are misleading and produce redundancy with public and international health, global-as-supraterritorial provides 'new' objects for research, education and practice while avoiding redundancy. Linked with 'health' as a human right, this concept preserves the rhetorical power of the term 'global health' for more innovative forms of study, research and practice. The dialectic approach reveals that the contradictions involved in the different notions of the term 'global' are only of apparent nature and not exclusive, but have to be seen as complementary to each other if expected to be useful in the final step.
Globally, women experience a disproportionate burden of disease and death due to inequities in access to basic health care, nutrition, and education. In the face of this disparity, it is striking that leadership in the field of global health is highly skewed towards men and that global health organizations neglect the issue of gender equality in their own leadership. Randomized trials demonstrate that women in leadership positions in governmental organizations implement different policies than men and that these policies are more supportive of women and children. Other studies show that proactive interventions to increase the proportion of women in leadership positions within businesses or government can be successful. Therefore, the authors assert that increasing female leadership in global health is both feasible and a fundamental step towards addressing the problem of women's health. In this Perspective, the authors contrast the high proportion of young female trainees who are interested in academic global health early in their careers with the low numbers of women successfully rising to global health leadership roles. The authors subsequently explore reasons for female attrition from the field of global health and offer practical strategies for closing the gender gap in global health leadership. The authors propose solutions aimed to promote female leaders from both resource-wealthy and resource-poor countries, including leadership training grants, mentorship from female leaders in global professions, strengthening health education in resource-poor countries, research-enabling grants, and altering institutional policies to support women choosing a global health career path. PMID:24918761
Downs, Jennifer A; Reif, Lindsey K; Hokororo, Adolfine; Fitzgerald, Daniel W
Global health diplomacy is an emerging discipline where health is incorporated into traditional diplomacy as a foreign policy tool. As, with any new area, there is a need for training. This article sets out what global health policy involves and the current academic response to providing training for it. PMID:18405195
Kickbusch, Ilona; Novotny, Thomas E; Drager, Nico; Silberschmidt, Gaudenz; Alcazar, Santiago
On November 6-7, 1989, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) held a Conference on Global Atmospheric Change and Human Health. Since this conference, presented papers have been transformed and revised as articles that address several potential impacts on human health of global warming. Coming when it did, this was a very important conference. At the present time, there
Global health's goal to address health issues across great sociocultural and socioeconomic gradients worldwide requires a sophisticated approach to the social root causes of disease and the social context of interventions. This is especially true today as the focus of global health work is actively broadened from acute to chronic and from infectious to non-communicable diseases. To respond to these complex biosocial problems, we propose the recent expansion of interest in the field of global health should look to the older field of social medicine, a shared domain of social and medical sciences that offers critical analytic and methodological tools to elucidate who gets sick, why and what we can do about it. Social medicine is a rich and relatively untapped resource for understanding the hybrid biological and social basis of global health problems. Global health can learn much from social medicine to help practitioners understand the social behaviour, social structure, social networks, cultural difference and social context of ethical action central to the success or failure of global health's important agendas. This understanding - of global health as global social medicine - can coalesce global health's unclear identity into a coherent framework effective for addressing the world's most pressing health issues. PMID:24819951
Holmes, Seth M; Greene, Jeremy A; Stonington, Scott D
Objective: Contemporary health care places enormous health information management demands on laypeople. Insights into their skills and habits complements current developments in consumer health innovations, including personal health records. Using a five-element human factors model of work, health information management in the household (HIMH) is characterized by the tasks completed by individuals within household organizations, using certain tools and technologies in a given physical environment. Design: We conducted a descriptive-exploratory study of the work of HIMH, involving 49 community-dwelling volunteers from a rural Midwestern community. Measurements: During in-person interviews, we collected data using semistructured questionnaires and photographs of artifacts used for HIMH. Results: The work of HIMH is largely the responsibility of a single individual, primarily engaged in the tasks of acquiring, managing, and organizing a diverse set of health information. Paper-based tools are most common, and residents develop strategies for storing information in the household environment aligned with anticipated use. Affiliative relationships, e.g., parent-child or spousal, within the household serve as the organization that gives rise to health information management practices. Synthesis of these findings led to identification of several storage strategies employed in HIMH. These strategies are labeled “just-in-time,” “just-because,” “just-in-case,” and “just-at-hand,” reflecting location of the artifacts of health information and anticipated urgency in the need to retrieve it. Conclusion: Laypeople develop and employ robust, complex strategies for managing health information in the home. Capitalizing on these strategies will complement and extend current consumer health innovations to provide functional support to people who face increasing demands to manage personal health information.
Moen, Anne; Brennan, Patricia Flatley
Deficiencies of micronutrients such as iron, zinc, and vitamin A afflict over three billion people (more than 50% of the world's population), most of them women, infants, and children in resource-poor families in the developing world. This global crisis in nutritional health is the result of dysfunctional food systems that do not consistently supply enough of these essential nutrients to meet the nutritional requirements of high-risk groups. Deficiencies of micronutrients result in increased morbidity and mortality rates, lost worker productivity, stagnated national development, permanent impairment of cognitive development in infants and children, and large economic costs and suffering to those societies affected. Because agricultural systems are the primary source of all micronutrients for all people, changes in agricultural policies and systems must be made that will ensure consistent and adequate supplies of all essential nutrients to all people. Additionally, the nutrition and health sectors must turn to agricultural interventions as a primary tool in their efforts to eliminate malnutrition from the world if they want to ensure sustainability. Biotechnological advances show great promise for improving the output of bioavailable micronutrients from agricultural systems that feed the poor. This paper reviews some of these opportunities and discusses the questions and concerns that should be raised when these technologies are used to improve the micronutrient status of vast numbers of people who are dependent on staple food crops for their sustenance. Further, important issues surrounding micronutrient bioavailability and plant food factors that affect it are discussed. PMID:16465989
Welch, Ross M
The largest absolute numbers of maternal deaths occur among the 40-50 million women who deliver annually without a skilled birth attendant. Most of these deaths occur in countries with a total fertility rate of greater than 4. The combination of global warming and rapid population growth in the Sahel and parts of the Middle East poses a serious threat to reproductive health and to food security. Poverty, lack of resources, and rapid population growth make it unlikely that most women in these countries will have access to skilled birth attendants or emergency obstetric care in the foreseeable future. Three strategies can be implemented to improve women's health and reproductive rights in high-fertility, low-resource settings: (1) make family planning accessible and remove non-evidenced-based barriers to contraception; (2) scale up community distribution of misoprostol for prevention of postpartum hemorrhage and, where it is legal, for medical abortion; and (3) eliminate child marriage and invest in girls and young women, thereby reducing early childbearing. PMID:22883918
Potts, Malcolm; Henderson, Courtney E
In an effort to increase inter-agency coordination, efficiency in implementing activities, and program sustainability, a whole-of-US Government approach to conduct health programs has been developed the Global Health Initiative (GHI). For Benin, the GHI C...
Introduction Health informatics systems are a proven tool for tobacco control interventions. To address the needs of low-income groups, the Tobacco Control Initiative was established in partnership with the Louisiana State University Health Care Services Division to provide cost-effective tobacco use cessation services through the health informatics system in the state public hospital system. Methods In this study we used a Web-based, result-reporting application to monitor and assess the effect of the 2009 federal cigarette tax increase. We assessed readiness to quit tobacco use before and after a cigarette tax increase among low-income tobacco users who were outpatients in a public hospital system. Results Overall, there was an increase in readiness to quit, from 22% during the first week of February to 33% during the first week of April, when the tax went into effect. Smokers who were female, 31 or older, African American, and assessed at a clinic visit in April were more likely to report readiness to quit than were men, those aged 30 or younger, those who were white, and those who were assessed at a clinic visit in February. Conclusion A health informatics system that efficiently tracks trends in readiness to quit can be used in combination with other strategies and thus optimize efforts to control tobacco use. Our data suggest that a cigarette tax increase affects smokers’ readiness to quit and provides an opportunity to intervene at the most beneficial time.
Moody-Thomas, Sarah; Horswell, Ronald; Yi, Yong; Celestin, Michael D.; Jones, Krysten D.
The Institute for Global Health at Vanderbilt enables the expansion and coordination of global health research, service, and training, reflecting the university's commitment to improve health services and outcomes in resource-limited settings. Global health encompasses both prevention via public health and treatment via medical care, all nested within a broader community-development context. This has fostered university-wide collaborations to address education,
Sten H. Vermund; Vikrant V. Sahasrabuddhe; Sheetal Khedkar; Yujiang Jia; Carol Etherington; Alfredo Vergara
Background A world divided by health inequalities poses ethical challenges for global health. International and national responses to health disparities must be rooted in ethical values about health and its distribution; this is because ethical claims have the power to motivate, delineate principles, duties and responsibilities, and hold global and national actors morally responsible for achieving common goals. Theories of justice are necessary to define duties and obligations of institutions and actors in reducing inequalities. The problem is the lack of a moral framework for solving problems of global health justice. Aim To study why global health inequalities are morally troubling, why efforts to reduce them are morally justified, how they should be measured and evaluated; how much priority disadvantaged groups should receive; and to delineate roles and responsibilities of national and international actors and institutions. Discussion and conclusions Duties and obligations of international and state actors in reducing global health inequalities are outlined. The ethical principles endorsed include the intrinsic value of health to well?being and equal respect for all human life, the importance of health for individual and collective agency, the concept of a shortfall from the health status of a reference group, and the need for a disproportionate effort to help disadvantaged groups. This approach does not seek to find ways in which global and national actors address global health inequalities by virtue of their self?interest, national interest, collective security or humanitarian assistance. It endorses the more robust concept of “human flourishing” and the desire to live in a world where all people have the capability to be healthy. Unlike cosmopolitan theory, this approach places the role of the nation?state in the forefront with primary, though not sole, moral responsibility. Rather shared health governance is essential for delivering health equity on a global scale.
Ruger, J P
This review takes stock of the global health governance (GHG) literature. We address the transition from international health governance (IHG) to global health governance, identify major actors, and explain some challenges and successes in GHG. We analyze the framing of health as national security, human security, human rights, and global public good, and the implications of these various frames. We also establish and examine from the literature GHG’s major themes and issues, which include: 1) persistent GHG problems; 2) different approaches to tackling health challenges (vertical, horizontal, and diagonal); 3) health’s multisectoral connections; 4) neoliberalism and the global economy; 5) the framing of health (e.g. as a security issue, as a foreign policy issue, as a human rights issue, and as a global public good); 6) global health inequalities; 7) local and country ownership and capacity; 8) international law in GHG; and 9) research gaps in GHG. We find that decades-old challenges in GHG persist and GHG needs a new way forward. A framework called shared health governance offers promise.
Ng, Nora Y.; Ruger, Jennifer Prah
Once an orphan field, 'global mental health' now has wide acknowledgement and prominence on the global health agenda. Increased recognition draws needed attention to individual suffering and the population impacts, but medicalizing global mental health produces a narrow view of the problems and solutions. Early framing by advocates of the global mental health problem emphasised biological disease, linked psychiatry with neurology, and reinforced categories of mental health disorders. Universality of biomedical concepts across culture is assumed in the globalisation of mental health but is strongly disputed by transcultural psychiatrists and anthropologists. Global mental health movement priorities take an individualised view, emphasising treatment and scale-up and neglecting social and structural determinants of health. To meet international targets and address the problem's broad social and cultural dimensions, the global mental health movement and advocates must develop more comprehensive strategies and include more diverse perspectives. PMID:24848660
Introduction Since the end of the 1990s, globalization has become a common term, facilitated by the social media of today and the growing public awareness of life-threatening problems common to all people, such as global warming, global security and global divides. Review For the main parameters of health like the burden of disease, life expectancy and healthy life expectancy, extreme discrepancies are observed across the world. Infant mortality, malnutrition and high fertility go hand in hand. Civil society, as an indispensable activator of public health development, mainly represented by non-governmental organisations (NGOs), is characterised by a high degree of fragmentation and lack of public accountability. The World Federation of Public Health Associations is used as an example of an NGO with a global mission and fostering regional cooperation as an indispensable intermediate level. The lack of a globally valid terminology of basic public health functions is prohibitive for coordinated global and regional efforts. Attempts to harmonise essential public health functions, services and operations are under way to facilitate communication and mutual understanding. Recommendations 1) Given the limited effects of the Millennium Development Goal agenda, the Post-2015 Development Goals should focus on integrated regional development. 2) A code of conduct for NGOs should be urgently developed for the health sector, and NGOs should be registered and accredited. 3) The harmonisation of the basic terminology for global public health essentials should be enhanced.
Laaser, Ulrich; Brand, Helmut
The Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center (AFHSC) was created to centralize Department of Defense (DoD) domestic and international healthcare surveillance efforts. The organization provides relevant, timely, actionable, and comprehensive health informat...
More than 2,000 people convened for the ninth annual Global Health and Innovation Conference at Yale University on April 21-22, 2012. Participants discussed the latest innovations, ideas in development, lessons learned, opportunities and challenges in global health activities. Several themes emerged, including the important role of frontline workers, strengthening health systems, leveraging social media, and sustainable and impact-driven philanthropy. Overall, the major outcome of the conference was the increased awareness of the potential of mobile technologies and social enterprises in transforming global health. Experts warned that donations and technological advances alone will not transform global health unless there are strong functioning health infrastructures and improved workforce. It was noted that there is a critical need for an integrated systems approach to global health problems and a need for scaling up promising pilot projects. Lack of funding, accountability, and sustainability were identified as major challenges in global health. PMID:23012591
Background Pain is an enormous problem globally. Estimates suggest that 20% of adults suffer from pain globally and 10% are newly diagnosed with chronic pain each year. Nevertheless, the problem of pain has primarily been regarded as a medical problem, and has been little addressed by the field of public health. Discussion Despite the ubiquity of pain, whether acute, chronic or intermittent, public health scholars and practitioners have not addressed this issue as a public health problem. The importance of viewing pain through a public health lens allows one to understand pain as a multifaceted, interdisciplinary problem for which many of the causes are the social determinants of health. Addressing pain as a global public health issue will also aid in priority setting and formulating public health policy to address this problem, which, like most other chronic non-communicable diseases, is growing both in absolute numbers and in its inequitable distribution across the globe. Summary The prevalence, incidence, and vast social and health consequences of global pain requires that the public health community give due attention to this issue. Doing so will mean that health care providers and public health professionals will have a more comprehensive understanding of pain and the appropriate public health and social policy responses to this problem.
Ten major long-term aims and tasks, so to speak ‘grand challenges’, for research in the field of medical informatics, including health informatics, are proposed and described. These are the further development of methods and tools of information processing for: (1) diagnostics (‘the visible body’); (2) therapy (‘medical intervention with as little strain on the patient as possible’); (3) therapy simulation;
The Core Content for Clinical Informatics defines the boundaries of the discipline and informs the Program Requirements for Fellowship Education in Clinical Informatics. The Core Content includes four major categories: fundamentals, clinical decision making and care process improvement, health information systems, and leadership and management of change. The AMIA Board of Directors approved the Core Content for Clinical Informatics in November 2008.
Gardner, Reed M.; Overhage, J. Marc; Steen, Elaine B.; Munger, Benson S.; Holmes, John H.; Williamson, Jeffrey J.; Detmer, Don E.
This article reviews recent advances in genomics and informatics relevant to cardiovascular research. In particular, we review the status of (1) whole genome sequencing efforts in human, mouse, rat, zebrafish, and dog; (2) the development of data mining and analysis tools; (3) the launching of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Programs for Genomics Applications and Proteomics Initiative; (4) efforts to characterize the cardiac transcriptome and proteome; and (5) the current status of computational modeling of the cardiac myocyte. In each instance, we provide links to relevant sources of information on the World Wide Web and critical appraisals of the promises and the challenges of an expanding and diverse information landscape.
Winslow, Raimond L.; Boguski, Mark S.
Global health financing has increased dramatically in recent years, indicative of a rise in health as a foreign policy issue. Several governments have issued specific foreign policy statements on global health and a new term, global health diplomacy, has been coined to describe the processes by which state and non-state actors engage to position health issues more prominently in foreign policy decision-making. Their ability to do so is important to advancing international cooperation in health. In this paper we review the arguments for health in foreign policy that inform global health diplomacy. These are organized into six policy frames: security, development, global public goods, trade, human rights and ethical/moral reasoning. Each of these frames has implications for how global health as a foreign policy issue is conceptualized. Differing arguments within and between these policy frames, while overlapping, can also be contradictory. This raises an important question about which arguments prevail in actual state decision-making. This question is addressed through an analysis of policy or policy-related documents and academic literature pertinent to each policy framing with some assessment of policy practice. The reference point for this analysis is the explicit goal of improving global health equity. This goal has increasing national traction within national public health discourse and decision-making and, through the Millennium Development Goals and other multilateral reports and declarations, is entering global health policy discussion. Initial findings support conventional international relations theory that most states, even when committed to health as a foreign policy goal, still make decisions primarily on the basis of the 'high politics' of national security and economic material interests. Development, human rights and ethical/moral arguments for global health assistance, the traditional 'low politics' of foreign policy, are present in discourse but do not appear to dominate practice. While political momentum for health as a foreign policy goal persists, the framing of this goal remains a contested issue. The analysis offered in this article may prove helpful to those engaged in global health diplomacy or in efforts to have global governance across a range of sectoral interests pay more attention to health equity impacts. PMID:20727211
Labonté, Ronald; Gagnon, Michelle L
The One Health approach, which recognizes the interconnectedness of human, animal and ecosystem health, encourages collaboration between diverse disciplines to address complex health problems. The advantages and challenges posed by these interdisciplinary collaborations are described in this review. Learning networks where diverse participants can openly share processes, best practices, and case studies are discussed as a strategy for conducting transdisciplinary One Health research and tackling complex global health problems. The 11 papers in this special issue are also introduced as they illustrate how a One Health approach can be applied to better understand and control zoonotic pathogens, engage community stakeholders in One Health research and utilize wildlife species, most notably sea otters and birds, as sentinels of ecosystem health. Collaboration is rarely without complications; however, drawing on these insights may benefit the process of operationalizing the One Health approach to address today's global health challenges. PMID:23711930
Conrad, Patricia A; Meek, Laura A; Dumit, Joe
Global health should encompass circumpolar health if it is to transcend the traditional approach of the “rich North” assisting the “poor South.” Although the eight Arctic states are among the world’s most highly developed countries, considerable health disparities exist among regions across the Arctic, as well as between northern and southern regions and between indigenous and nonindigenous populations within some of these states. While sharing commonalities such as a sparse population, geographical remoteness, harsh physical environment, and underdeveloped human resources, circumpolar regions in the northern hemisphere have developed different health systems, strategies, and practices, some of which are relevant to middle and lower income countries. As the Arctic gains prominence as a sentinel of global issues such as climate change, the health of circumpolar populations should be part of the global health discourse and policy development.
Chatwood, Susan; Bjerregaard, Peter
This paper explores the importance for health promotion of the rise of public health as a foreign policy issue. Although health promotion encompassed foreign policy as part of 'healthy public policy', mainstream foreign policy neglected public health and health promotion's role in it. Globalization forces health promotion, however, to address directly the relationship between public health and foreign policy. The need for 'health as foreign policy' is apparent from the prominence public health now has in all the basic governance functions served by foreign policy. The Secretary-General's United Nations (UN) reform proposals demonstrate the importance of foreign policy to health promotion as a core component of public health because the proposals embed public health in each element of the Secretary-General's vision for the UN in the 21st century. The emergence of health as foreign policy presents opportunities and risks for health promotion that can be managed by emphasizing that public health constitutes an integrated public good that benefits all governance tasks served by foreign policy. Any effort to harness globalization for public health will have to make health as foreign policy a centerpiece of its ambitions, and this task is now health promotion's burden and opportunity. PMID:17307957
Fidler, David P
Background and Purpose. Nurse managers are in an excellent position for providing leadership and support within the institutions they serve and are often responsible for accessing information that is vital to the improvement of health facility processes and patients' outcomes. Therefore, competency in informatics is essential. The purposes of this study are to examine current informatics competency levels of nurse managers and to identify the variables that influence these competencies. Methods. A questionnaire designed to assess demographic information and nursing informatics competency was completed by 68 nurse managers. Multiple linear regression analysis was conducted to analyze the factors influencing informatics competency. Results. Descriptive analysis of the data revealed that informatics competency of these nurse managers was in the moderate range (77.65 ± 8.14). Multiple linear regression analysis indicated that level of education, nursing administration experience, and informatics education/training were significant factors affecting competency levels. Conclusion. The factors identified in this study can serve as a reference for nurse managers who were wishing to improve their informatics competency, hospital administrators seeking to provide appropriate training, and nursing educators who were making decisions about nursing informatics curricula. These findings suggest that efforts to enhance the informatics competency of nurse managers have marked potential benefits.
Cui, Dan; Zhu, Xuemei; Zhao, Qiuli; Xiao, Ningning; Shen, Xiaoying
This paper summarizes four UK reviews of socially stratified health inequalities that were undertaken during the past five decades. It describes the background of misplaced optimism and false hopes which characterized the UK's own record of health inequalities; the broken promises on debt cancellations which was the experience of developing countries. It describes why the UK's past leadership record in international health provides grounds for optimism for the future and for benefits for both developed and developing countries through the adoption of more collaborative approaches to global health than have characterized international relationships in the past. It recalls the enthusiasm generated in the UK, and internationally, by the establishment of the Global Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. It promotes the perception of health both as a global public good and as a developmental issue and why a focus on poverty is essential to the address of global health issues. It sees the designing of appropriate strategies and partnerships towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals as an important first step for achieving successful address to global public health issues.
Stuart, Kenneth; Soulsby, EJL
U.S.-funded global health programs have put regulatory and policy requirements in place to help prevent procurement of substandard drugs. USAID, for example, reviews quality assurance information for all drugs before they are procured. Specifically, USAID...
This paper assesses progress in the development of a global framework for responding to non-communicable diseases, as reflected in the policies and initiatives of the World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank and the UN: the institutions most capable of shaping a coherent global policy. Responding to the global burden of chronic disease requires a strategic assessment of the global processes
Roger S Magnusson
Disease has traveled with goods and people since the earliest times. Armed globalization spread disease, to the extent of eliminating entire populations. The geography of disease shaped patterns of colonization and industrialization throughout the now poor world. Many see related threats to public health from current globalization. Multilateral and bilateral trade agreements do not always adequately represent the interests of
This review describes recent experimental and focus group research on graphics as a method of communication about quantitative health risks. Some of the studies discussed in this review assessed effect of graphs on quantitative reasoning, others assessed effects on behavior or behavioral intentions, and still others assessed viewers’ likes and dislikes. Graphical features that improve the accuracy of quantitative reasoning
Jessica S. Ancker; Yalini Senathirajah; Rita Kukafka; Justin B. Starren
We introduce the concept of a Medical Informatics Workup performed by fourth year medical students working in a busy inner-city Emergency Room. These students use portable computers (Macintosh PowerBook 170s connected to a removable cartridge hard drive and CD-ROM drive) to do the patient workups. The PowerBook 170 contains the automated medical record entry software (IMR-E), five expert system software packages, and a program that allows the PowerBook to emulate a PC-compatible computer. With this configuration the student has a portable system that allows for the creation of a computerized medical record at the patient's bedside, along with the ability to analyze the data and generate a list of differential diagnoses.
Naeymi-Rad, F.; Trace, D.; Shoults, K.; Suico, J.; O'Brien, M.; Evens, M.; Carmony, L.; Roberts, R.; Zelanski, R.
The last two decades have witnessed the emergence and consolidation of an economic paradigm which emphasizes domestic deregulation and the removal of barriers to international trade and finance. If properly managed, such an approach can lead to perceptible gains in health status. Where markets are non-exclusionary, regulatory institutions strong and safety nets in place, globalization enhances the performance of countries with a good human and physical infrastructure but narrow domestic markets. Health gains in China, Costa Rica, the East Asian "tiger economies" and Viet Nam can be attributed in part to their growing access to global markets, savings and technology. However, for most of the remaining countries, many of them in Africa, Latin America and Eastern Europe, globalization has not lived up to its promises due to a combination of poor domestic conditions, an unequal distribution of foreign investments and the imposition of new conditions further limiting the access of their exports to the OECD markets. In these developing countries, the last twenty years have brought about a slow, unstable and unequal pattern of growth and stagnation in health indicators. Autarky is not the answer to this situation, but neither is premature, unconditional and unselective globalization. Further unilateral liberalization is unlikely to help them to improve their economic performance and health conditions. For them, a gradual and selective integration into the world economy linked to the removal of asymmetries in global markets and to the creation of democratic institutions of global governance is preferable to instant globalization.
Cornia, G. A.
Americans seem to have reached a consensus about the urgent need to devise a cost containment strategy that leaves intact a pluralistic health care system. One option is global budgeting--the imposition of a national health care budget with all-payer price controls. This article reviews the factual and legal bases for global budgeting and examines proposed mechanisms to cap expenditures or fix prices for all medical goods and services. Also discussed are the implications of financial restraints on a free market economy, the experiences of other countries attempting to control health care costs while providing universal coverage, the complications of global budgeting, and ways to safeguard medical excellence and innovation if global budgeting is adopted. PMID:10126799
Health promotion is very relevant today. There is a global acceptance that health and social wellbeing are determined by many factors outside the health system which include socioeconomic conditions, patterns of consumption associated with food and communication, demographic patterns, learning environments, family patterns, the cultural and social fabric of societies; sociopolitical and economic changes, including commercialization and trade and global environmental change. In such a situation, health issues can be effectively addressed by adopting a holistic approach by empowering individuals and communities to take action for their health, fostering leadership for public health, promoting intersectoral action to build healthy public policies in all sectors and creating sustainable health systems. Although, not a new concept, health promotion received an impetus following Alma Ata declaration. Recently it has evolved through a series of international conferences, with the first conference in Canada producing the famous Ottawa charter. Efforts at promoting health encompassing actions at individual and community levels, health system strengthening and multi sectoral partnership can be directed at specific health conditions. It should also include settings-based approach to promote health in specific settings such as schools, hospitals, workplaces, residential areas etc. Health promotion needs to be built into all the policies and if utilized efficiently will lead to positive health outcomes. PMID:22529532
Kumar, Sanjiv; Preetha, Gs
Health promotion is very relevant today. There is a global acceptance that health and social wellbeing are determined by many factors outside the health system which include socioeconomic conditions, patterns of consumption associated with food and communication, demographic patterns, learning environments, family patterns, the cultural and social fabric of societies; sociopolitical and economic changes, including commercialization and trade and global environmental change. In such a situation, health issues can be effectively addressed by adopting a holistic approach by empowering individuals and communities to take action for their health, fostering leadership for public health, promoting intersectoral action to build healthy public policies in all sectors and creating sustainable health systems. Although, not a new concept, health promotion received an impetus following Alma Ata declaration. Recently it has evolved through a series of international conferences, with the first conference in Canada producing the famous Ottawa charter. Efforts at promoting health encompassing actions at individual and community levels, health system strengthening and multi sectoral partnership can be directed at specific health conditions. It should also include settings-based approach to promote health in specific settings such as schools, hospitals, workplaces, residential areas etc. Health promotion needs to be built into all the policies and if utilized efficiently will lead to positive health outcomes.
Kumar, Sanjiv; Preetha, GS
Globalisation is a defining economic and social trend of the past several decades. Globalisation affects health directly and indirectly and creates economic and health disparities within and across countries. The political response to address these disparities, exemplified by the Millennium Development Goals, has put pressure on the global community to redress massive inequities in health and other determinants of human capability across countries. This, in turn, has accelerated a transformation in the architecture of global health governance. The entrance of new actors, such as private foundations and multi-stakeholder initiatives, contributed to a doubling of funds for global health between 2000 and 2010. Today the governance of public health is in flux, with diminished leadership from multilateral institutions, such as the WHO, and poor coherence in policy and programming that undermines the potential for sustainable health gains. These trends pose new challenges and opportunities for global public health, which is centrally concerned with identifying and addressing threats to the health of vulnerable populations worldwide. PMID:22621678
Kruk, Margaret E
This paper reviews the health dimension and sociocultural, economic, and ecological determinants of health in existing global scenario studies. Not even half of the 31 scenarios reviewed gave a good description of future health developments and the different scenario studies did not handle health in a consistent way. Most of the global driving forces of health are addressed adequately in the selected scenarios, however, and it therefore would have been possible to describe the future developments in health as an outcome of these multiple driving forces. To provide examples on how future health can be incorporated in existing scenarios, we linked the sociocultural, economic, and environmental developments described in three sets of scenarios (special report on emission scenarios (SRES), global environmental outlook-3 (GEO3), and world water scenarios (WWS)) to three potential, but imaginary, health futures ("age of emerging infectious diseases", "age of medical technology", and "age of sustained health"). This paper provides useful insights into how to deal with future health in scenarios and shows that a comprehensive picture of future health evolves when all important driving forces and pressures are taken into account.
Martens, Pim; Huynen, Maud
Understanding variation among users’ information needs and the quality of information in an electronic system is important for informaticians to ensure data are fit-for-use in answering important questions in clinical and public health. To measure variation in satisfaction with currently reported data, as well as perceived importance and need with respect to completeness and timeliness, we surveyed epidemiologists and other public health professionals across multiple jurisdictions. We observed consensus for some data elements, such as county of residence, which respondents perceived as important and felt should always be reported. However information needs differed for many data elements, especially when comparing notifiable diseases such as chlamydia to seasonal (influenza) and chronic (diabetes) diseases. Given the trend towards greater volume and variety of data as inputs to surveillance systems, variation of information needs impacts system design and practice. Systems must be flexible and highly configurable to accommodate variation, and informaticians must measure and improve systems and business processes to accommodate for variation of both users and information.
Dixon, Brian E.; Lai, Patrick T. S.; Grannis, Shaun J.
Intimate partner violence is a serious violation of human rights and a significant global health problem. As the largest health workforce worldwide, nurses are well positioned to address this health issue. Based on literature from various countries, this article presents a summary of the literature on health consequences, costs, prevalence, risk factors, perceptions, and manifestations of intimate partner violence, and women's responses to it. Next, building on the author's program of research on intimate partner violence, the article highlights a number of implications for nursing: intersectionality; micro, meso, and macro levels; social violence; violence throughout a woman's lifespan; and the migration context and process. Finally, the article presents research and practice recommendations for nurses and proposes North-South collaborations and capacity-building to address the complex nature of this global health problem. PMID:23448074
Four points are made about globalization and health. First, economic integration is a powerful force for raising the incomes of poor countries. In the past 20 years several large developing countries have opened up to trade and investment, and they are growing well--faster than the rich countries. Second, there is no tendency for income inequality to increase in countries that open up. The higher growth that accompanies globalization in developing countries generally benefits poor people. Since there is a large literature linking income of the poor to health status, we can be reasonably confident that globalization has indirect positive effects on nutrition, infant mortality and other health issues related to income. Third, economic integration can obviously have adverse health effects as well: the transmission of AIDS through migration and travel is a dramatic recent example. However, both relatively closed and relatively open developing countries have severe AIDS problems. The practical solution lies in health policies, not in policies on economic integration. Likewise, free trade in tobacco will lead to increased smoking unless health-motivated disincentives are put in place. Global integration requires supporting institutions and policies. Fourth, the international architecture can be improved so that it is more beneficial to poor countries. For example, with regard to intellectual property rights, it may be practical for pharmaceutical innovators to choose to have intellectual property rights in either rich country markets or poor country ones, but not both. In this way incentives could be strong for research on diseases in both rich and poor countries.
Science, technology, and medicine (STM) are not immune to the widespread and persistent crises that have defined the 21st century. We, the editors of Global Advances in Health and Medicine (GAHMJ), a new scholarly medical journal, believe that solutions in healthcare will be ones that accelerate the application of global advances in health and medicine, resulting in improved population-health management, healthcare delivery, and patient outcomes. The journal is focused on solutions in 3 main areas: (1) systems theory and medicine, (2) the global convergence of healthcare practices, and (3) evidence from the point of care (eg, medical case reports). And GAHMJ is more than a scholarly medical journal; it is a communication platform. The journal itself is cross-disciplinary and peer reviewed and offers innovative STM content for the worldwide community of healthcare professionals who actively participate in the healthcare debate.
The present paper explores possible implications of the globalization of the food system for diet and health. The paper poses five key questions to clarify the relationship between food and globalization. The first question is what is globalization. The paper suggests that it is helpful to distinguish between economic, political, ideological and cultural processes. Globalization is also marked by internal oppositional dynamics: there are re-localization and regional tendencies which counter the global. The second question is whether there is anything new about globalization. Food has been a much traded commodity for millennia. The paper concludes that what is new about the current phases of globalization is the pace and scale of the change, and the fact that power is being concentrated into so few hands. New marketing techniques and supply-chain management consolidate these features. The third question is who is in control of the globalization era and who benefits and loses from the processes of globalization. It is argued that modern food economies are hypermarket rather than market economies, with power accruing to the distributor more than has been recognized. The fourth question concerns governance of the food system. Historically, systems of local and national government have regulated the food supply where appropriate. Now, new international systems are emerging, partly using existing bodies and partly creating new ones. The final question is of the future. Globalization is a value-laden area of study, yet its implications for dietary change and for health are considerable. The paper argues that dimensions of change can be discerned, although it would be rash to bet on which end of each dimension will emerge as dominant in the 21st century. PMID:10466175
Sex-based health disparities are evident throughout the world; however, nowhere are these disparities greater than in resource-poor countries. Women in developing nations lack basic health care and face life-debilitating and life-threatening health issues. Some health issues never existed in the West, whereas science eradicated others decades ago. Maternal mortality, female genital cutting, child marriage, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/AIDS, and cervical cancer are a few of the issues that plague developing nations. This article introduces some of these challenging health problems. In subsequent issues, they will be explored in more depth. Reviews in Obstetrics & Gynecology hopes that highlighting global women’s health issues will increase awareness and establish a renewed commitment to improving women’s lives.
Nour, Nawal M
Sex-based health disparities are evident throughout the world; however, nowhere are these disparities greater than in resource-poor countries. Women in developing nations lack basic health care and face life-debilitating and life-threatening health issues. Some health issues never existed in the West, whereas science eradicated others decades ago. Maternal mortality, female genital cutting, child marriage, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/AIDS, and cervical cancer are a few of the issues that plague developing nations. This article introduces some of these challenging health problems. In subsequent issues, they will be explored in more depth. Reviews in Obstetrics & Gynecology hopes that highlighting global women's health issues will increase awareness and establish a renewed commitment to improving women's lives. PMID:18701928
Nour, Nawal M
As part of the background research to the World development report 1993: investing in health, an effort was made to estimate public, private and total expenditures on health for all countries of the world. Estimates could be found for public spending for most countries, but for private expenditure in many fewer countries. Regressions were used to predict the missing values of regional and global estimates. These econometric exercises were also used to relate expenditure to measures of health status. In 1990 the world spent an estimated US$ 1.7 trillion (1.7 x 10(12) on health, or $1.9 trillion (1.9 x 10(12)) in dollars adjusted for higher purchasing power in poorer countries. This amount was about 60% public and 40% private in origin. However, as incomes rise, public health expenditure tends to displace private spending and to account for the increasing share of incomes devoted to health.
Murray, C. J.; Govindaraj, R.; Musgrove, P.
This paper examines cumulative ethical and self-interested reasons why wealthy developed nations should be motivated to do more to improve health care in developing countries. Egalitarian and human rights reasons why wealthy nations should do more to improve global health are that doing so would (1) promote equality of opportunity (2) improve the situation of the worst-off, (3) promote respect of the human right to have one's most basic needs met, and (4) reduce undeserved inequalities in well-being. Utilitarian reasons for improving global health are that this would (5) promote the greater good of humankind, and (6) achieve enormous benefits while requiring only small sacrifices. Libertarian reasons are that this would (7) amend historical injustices and (8) meet the obligation to amend injustices that developed world countries have contributed to. Self-interested reasons why wealthy nations should do more to improve global health are that doing so would (9) reduce the threat of infectious diseases to developed countries, (10) promote developed countries' economic interests, and (11) promote global security. All of these reasons count, and together they add up to make an overwhelmingly powerful case for change. Those opposed to wealthy government funding of developing world health improvement would most likely appeal, implicitly or explicitly to the idea that coercive taxation for redistributive purposes would violate the right of an individual to keep his hard-earned income. The idea that this reason not to improve global health should outweigh the combination of rights and values embodied in the eleven reasons enumerated above, however is implausibly extreme, morally repugnant and perhaps imprudent. PMID:19143088
Selgelid, Michael J
Global nuclear proliferation, bioterrorism, and emerging infections have challenged national capacities to achieve and maintain global security. Over the last century, emerging infectious disease threats resulted in the development of the preliminary versions of the International Health Regulations (IHR) of the World Health Organization (WHO). The current HR(2005) contain major differences compared to earlier versions, including: substantial shifts from containment at the border to containment at the source of the event; shifts from a rather small disease list (smallpox, plague, cholera, and yellow fever) required to be reported, to all public health threats; and shifts from preset measures to tailored responses with more flexibility to deal with the local situations on the ground. The new IHR(2005) call for accountability. They also call for strengthened national capacity for surveillance and control; prevention, alert, and response to international public health emergencies beyond the traditional short list of required reporting; global partnership and collaboration; and human rights, obligations, accountability, and procedures of monitoring. Under these evolved regulations, as well as other measures, such as the Revolving Fund for vaccine procurement of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), global health security could be maintained in the response to urban yellow fever in Paraguay in 2008 and the influenza (H1N1) pandemic of 2009-2010.
This article takes a historical perspective on the changing position of WHO in the global health architecture over the past two decades. From the early 1990s a number of weaknesses within the structure and governance of the World Health Organization were becoming apparent, as a rapidly changing post Cold War world placed more complex demands on the international organizations generally, but significantly so in the field of global health. Towards the end of that decade and during the first half of the next, WHO revitalized and played a crucial role in setting global health priorities. However, over the past decade, the organization has to some extent been bypassed for funding, and it lost some of its authority and its ability to set a global health agenda. The reasons for this decline are complex and multifaceted. Some of the main factors include WHO's inability to reform its core structure, the growing influence of non-governmental actors, a lack of coherence in the positions, priorities and funding decisions between the health ministries and the ministries overseeing development assistance in several donor member states, and the lack of strong leadership of the organization. PMID:24388640
As we have advanced in medical informatics and created many impressive innovations, we also have learned that technologic developments are not sufficient to bring the value of computer and information technologies to health care systems. This paper proposes a model for improving how we develop and deploy information technology. The authors focus on trends in people, organizational, and social issues (POI/OSI), which are becoming more complex as both health care institutions and information technologies are changing rapidly. They outline key issues and suggest high-priority research areas. One dimension of the model concerns different organizational levels at which informatics applications are used. The other dimension draws on social science disciplines for their approaches to studying implications of POI/OSI in informatics. By drawing on a wide variety of research approaches and asking questions based in social science disciplines, the authors propose a research agenda for high-priority issues, so that the challenges they see ahead for informatics may be met better.
Kaplan, Bonnie; Brennan, Patricia Flatley; Dowling, Alan F.; Friedman, Charles P.; Peel, Victor
NCI’s Center for Global Health is working to increase the availability of low-cost, portable technologies for cancer diagnosis, imaging, and treatment in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The technical scope of our efforts is broad, but we are interested in several key specifications for the technologies we would like to see developed. Read more about the objectives here.
Provides assistance and guidance to nations as they develop and implement cancer control plans, trains international investigators, and strengthens U.S. national, regional, multilateral, and bilateral collaboration in health research, cancer research, and cancer control to advance global cancer research, build expertise, and reduce cancer deaths worldwide.
Predicted shortages and recruitment targets for nurses in developed coun- tries threaten to deplete nurse supply and undermine global health initiatives in developing countries. A twofold approach is required, involving greater diligence by developing coun- tries in creating a largely sustainable domestic nurse workforce and their greater invest- ment through international aid in building nursing education capacity in the less
Linda H. Aiken; James Buchan; Julie Sochalski; Barbara Nichols; Mary Powell
Objective We investigated the user requirements of African-American youth (aged 14–24?years) to inform the design of a culturally appropriate, network-based informatics intervention for the prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STI). Materials and Methods We conducted 10 focus groups with 75 African-American youth from a city with high HIV/STI prevalence. Data analyses involved coding using qualitative content analysis procedures and memo writing. Results Unexpectedly, the majority of participants’ design recommendations concerned trust. Youth expressed distrust towards people and groups, which was amplified within the context of information technology-mediated interactions about HIV/STI. Participants expressed distrust in the reliability of condoms and the accuracy of HIV tests. They questioned the benevolence of many institutions, and some rejected authoritative HIV/STI information. Therefore, reputational information, including rumor, influenced HIV/STI-related decision making. Participants’ design requirements also focused on trust-related concerns. Accordingly, we developed a novel trust-centered design framework to guide intervention design. Discussion Current approaches to online trust for health informatics do not consider group-level trusting patterns. Yet, trust was the central intervention-relevant issue among African-American youth, suggesting an important focus for culturally informed design. Our design framework incorporates: intervention objectives (eg, network embeddedness, participation); functional specifications (eg, decision support, collective action, credible question and answer services); and interaction design (eg, member control, offline network linkages, optional anonymity). Conclusions Trust is a critical focus for HIV/STI informatics interventions for young African Americans. Our design framework offers practical, culturally relevant, and systematic guidance to designers to reach this underserved group better.
Veinot, Tiffany C; Campbell, Terrance R; Kruger, Daniel J; Grodzinski, Alison
Within health and health care, medical informatics and its subspecialties of biomedical, clinical, and public health informatics have emerged as a new discipline with increasing demands for its own work force. Knowledge and skills in medical informatics are widely acknowledged as crucial to future success in patient care, research relating to biomedicine, clinical care, and public health, as well as health policy design. The maturity of the domain and the demand on expertise necessitate standardized training and certification of professionals. The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) embarked on a major effort to create professional level education and certification for physicians of various professions and specialties in informatics. This article focuses on the AMIA effort in the professional structure of medical specialization, e.g., the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) and the related Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). This report summarizes the current progress to create a recognized sub-certificate of competence in Clinical Informatics and discusses likely near term (three to five year) implications on training, certification, and work force with an emphasis on clinical applied informatics. PMID:23616825
Detmer, Don E; Munger, Benson S; Lehmann, Christoph U
Health care providers have a basic responsibility to protect patients from accidental harm. At the institutional level, creating safe health care organizations necessitates a systematic approach. Effective use of informatics to enhance safety requires the establishment and use of standards for concept definitions and for data exchange, development of acceptable models for knowledge representation, incentives for adoption of electronic health records, support for adverse event detection and reporting, and greater investment in research at the intersection of informatics and patient safety. Leading organizations have demonstrated that health care informatics approaches can improve safety. Nevertheless, significant obstacles today limit optimal application of health informatics to safety within most provider environments. The authors offer a series of recommendations for addressing these challenges.
Kilbridge, Peter M.; Classen, David C.
The Institute for Global Health at Vanderbilt enables the expansion and coordination of global health research, service, and training, reflecting the university's commitment to improve health services and outcomes in resource-limited settings. Global health encompasses both prevention via public health and treatment via medical care, all nested within a broader community-development context. This has fostered university-wide collaborations to address education, business/economics, engineering, nursing, and language training, among others. The institute is a natural facilitator for team building and has been especially helpful in organizing institutional responses to global health solicitations from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and other funding agencies. This center-without-walls philosophy nurtures noncompetitive partnerships among and within departments and schools. With extramural support from the NIH and from endowment and developmental investments from the school of medicine, the institute funds new pilot projects to nurture global educational and research exchanges related to health and development. Vanderbilt's newest programs are a CDC-supported HIV/AIDS service initiative in Africa and an overseas research training program for health science graduate students and clinical fellows. New opportunities are available for Vanderbilt students, staff, and faculty to work abroad in partnership with international health projects through a number of Tennessee institutions now networked with the institute. A center-without-walls may be a model for institutions contemplating strategic investments to better organize service and teaching opportunities abroad, and to achieve greater successes in leveraging extramural support for overseas and domestic work focused on tropical medicine and global health.
Vermund, Sten H.; Sahasrabuddhe, Vikrant V.; Khedkar, Sheetal; Jia, Yujiang; Etherington, Carol; Vergara, Alfredo
\\u000a The goal of infectious disease informatics is to optimize the clinical and public health management of infectious diseases\\u000a through improvements in the development and use of antimicrobials, the design of more effective vaccines, the identification\\u000a of biomarkers for life-threatening infections, a better understanding of host-pathogen interactions, and biosurveillance and\\u000a clinical decision support. Infectious disease informatics can lead to more targeted
Global health education is becoming increasingly prominent in North America. It is widely agreed upon that global health is an important aspect of an education in the health sciences and increasingly in other disciplines such as law, economics and political science. There is currently a paucity of studies examining the content of global health courses at the post-secondary level. The purpose of our research is to identify the content areas being covered in global health curricula in North American universities, as a first step in mapping global health curricula across North America. We collected 67 course syllabi from 31 universities and analyzed the topics covered in the course. This snapshot of global health education will aid students searching for global health content, as well as educators and university administrators who are developing or expanding global health programs in Canada and the United States. PMID:24458005
Lencucha, Raphael; Mohindra, Katia
The impact of increased national wealth, as measured by Gross Domestic Product (GDP), on public health is widely understood, however an equally important but less well-acclaimed relationship exists between improvements in health and the growth of an economy. Communicable diseases such as HIV, TB, Malaria and the Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) are impacting many of the world's poorest and most vulnerable populations, and depressing economic development. Sickness and disease has decreased the size and capabilities of the workforce through impeding access to education and suppressing foreign direct investment (FDI). There is clear evidence that by investing in health improvements a significant increase in GDP per capita can be attained in four ways: Firstly, healthier populations are more economically productive; secondly, proactive healthcare leads to decrease in many of the additive healthcare costs associated with lack of care (treating opportunistic infections in the case of HIV for example); thirdly, improved health represents a real economic and developmental outcome in-and-of itself and finally, healthcare spending capitalises on the Keynesian 'economic multiplier' effect. Continued under-investment in health and health systems represent an important threat to our future global prosperity. This editorial calls for a recognition of health as a major engine of economic growth and for commensurate investment in public health, particularly in poor countries.
There are three grand challenges for medical informatics policy: (1) What is it? (2) What should it be? (3) How can we influence its development? To address these challenges requires: (1) an historical analysis of medical informatics policies in a representative sample of countries. This should include an account of major events, the roles of technology, individuals, culture and social settings. Pioneers have been led by visions of what medical informatics should achieve. The role of these visions and the reactions to unmet expectations thus also need to be analysed; (2) a generally applicable medical informatics policy that places the needs of its stakeholders and clients first. Top priorities are to support quality health care delivery and quality management of health care facilities; (3) an explanation of how policies in medical informatics are created and implemented together with a strategy to guide medical informatics professionals in their lobbying efforts. PMID:10805010
Infectious diseases have had a decisive and rapid impact on shaping and changing health policy. Noncommunicable diseases, while not garnering as much interest or importance over the past 20 years, have been affecting public health around the world in a steady and critical way, becoming the leading cause of death in developed and developing countries. This article discusses emergent issues in global health related to noncommunicable diseases and conditions, with focus on defining the unique epidemiologic features and relevant programmatic, health systems, and policy responses concerning noncommunicable chronic diseases, mental health, accidents and injuries, urbanization, climate change, and disaster preparedness. PMID:21896363
Koehlmoos, Tracey Pérez; Anwar, Shahela; Cravioto, Alejandro
Corruption is a serious threat to global health outcomes, leading to financial waste and adverse health consequences. Yet, forms of corruption impacting global health are endemic worldwide in public and private sectors, and in developed and resource-poor settings alike. Allegations of misuse of funds and fraud in global health initiatives also threaten future investment. Current domestic and sectorial-level responses are fragmented and have been criticized as ineffective. In order to address this issue, we propose a global health governance framework calling for international recognition of “global health corruption” and development of a treaty protocol to combat this crucial issue.
Social media use in modern medicine is fraught with ethical dilemmas and risks of unprofessional behavior. This essay surveys the existing literature on the possibilities and pitfalls of social media use by health-care professionals and concludes that non-engagement with social media is not an option. A mindful approach, not vague guidelines or long checklists, will foster a generation of physicians comfortable using online platforms for education and reflection. The use of social media during global health experiences abroad has been largely ignored in the literature and presents special challenges. With a view to starting a reflective dialogue on this subject, this essay identifies some ethically nebulous aspects of global health blogging. The discussion focuses on physician and student blogging, but these principles should apply to other online platforms as well and should prove valuable for health-care professionals who are engaged in developing guidelines, educating medical students and resident physicians, or in sharing their experiences and insights on the internet. PMID:24769750
Frischtak, Helena; Sinha, Pranay
There is broad scientific consensus that Earth's climate is warming rapidly and at an accelerating rate. Human activities, primarily the burning of fossil fuels, are very likely (>90% probability) to be the main cause of this warming. Climate-sensitive changes in ecosystems are already being observed, and fundamental, potentially irreversible, ecological changes may occur in the coming decades. Conservative environmental estimates of the impact of climate changes that are already in process indicate that they will result in numerous health effects to children. The nature and extent of these changes will be greatly affected by actions taken or not taken now at the global level. Physicians have written on the projected effects of climate change on public health, but little has been written specifically on anticipated effects of climate change on children's health. Children represent a particularly vulnerable group that is likely to suffer disproportionately from both direct and indirect adverse health effects of climate change. Pediatric health care professionals should understand these threats, anticipate their effects on children's health, and participate as children's advocates for strong mitigation and adaptation strategies now. Any solutions that address climate change must be developed within the context of overall sustainability (the use of resources by the current generation to meet current needs while ensuring that future generations will be able to meet their needs). Pediatric health care professionals can be leaders in a move away from a traditional focus on disease prevention to a broad, integrated focus on sustainability as synonymous with health. This policy statement is supported by a technical report that examines in some depth the nature of the problem of climate change, likely effects on children's health as a result of climate change, and the critical importance of responding promptly and aggressively to reduce activities that are contributing to this change. PMID:17967923
Shea, Katherine M
Introduction At the present time, higher education institutions dealing with education for public health in Europe and beyond are faced with a complex and comprehensive task of responding to global health challenges. Review Literature reviews in public health and global health and exploration of internet presentations of regional and global organisations dealing with education for public health were the main methods employed in the work presented in this paper. Higher academic institutions are searching for appropriate strategies in competences-based education, which will increase the global attractiveness of their academic programmes and courses for continuous professional development. Academic professionals are taking advantage of blended learning and new web technologies. In Europe and beyond they are opening up debates about the scope of public health and global health. Nevertheless, global health is bringing revitalisation of public health education, which is recognised as one of the core components by many other academic institutions involved in global health work. More than ever, higher academic institutions for public health are recognising the importance of institutional partnerships with various organisations and efficient modes of cooperation in regional and global networks. Networking in a global setting is bringing new opportunities, but also opening debates about global harmonisation of competence-based education to achieve functional knowledge, increase mobility of public health professionals, better employability and affordable performance. Conclusions As public health opportunities and threats are increasingly global, higher education institutions in Europe and in other regions have to look beyond national boundaries and participate in networks for education, research and practice.
Bjegovic-Mikanovic, Vesna; Jovic-Vranes, Aleksandra; Czabanowska, Katarzyna; Otok, Robert
Development of health information systems innovations is necessary to create a better future for health and health care, but evaluating them is challenging. This paper examines the problem of evaluating health IT projects in which innovation is agile, adaptive, and emergent, and in which innovation diffusion and production are interlinked. We introduce a typology of mindsets for evaluation design that are typically used in health informatics: optimality, contingency, and usefulness, and make the case for a modularity mindset. We propose a model that shifts the unit of analysis from an evaluation as a whole, to specific modules of an evaluation, such as purpose, target, and methods. We then use retrospective participant observation to illustrate the approach using a case study: the ONC SHARP Harvard project developing the SMArt platform (smartplaforms.org). We find that the proposed modular approach to evaluation design provides a balanced alternative to standard archetypical designs on the one hand, and fully custom-made designs, on the other hand.
Ramly, Edmond; Brennan, Patricia Flatley
The year 2001 and the next millennium will soon be upon us. The major gains in health in the 20th century were primarily the result of improvements in public health including sanitation and immunization. Global health improvements will occur in the 21st century through improvements in information (in particular health training). We will describe a new paradigm for transnational training, the supercourse. In the next century global lecture-shareware training will take place, with Deming based quality control systems on the Internet. Faculty will thus share their best, most passionate lectures on the internet. During the past 100 years there has been a 25-year increase in life expectancy. It has been estimated that 24 of the 25 years were the result of prevention. Most prevention activity is sharing of information. We are working with leaders from WHO, the World Bank, IBM, NASA, PAHO to create a discipline called telepreventive medicine. This is the application of low band with information systems (the Internet) to large numbers of well people to prevent disease. One of the most important aspect of this work is the establishment globalisation of prevention education; the Supercourse. Question: What is the best way to improve health training/research? Answer: Improve the lectures. Question: How do we improve health training/research lectures: Answer: Have academic faculty worldwide share their lectures: Question: Will faculty share lectures? Answer: Yes, The Supercourse has 1107 faculty from 101 countries who created a Library of Lectures with 110 lectures on the Internet with quality control, and cutting edge cognitive design. This is being shared worldwide. We are developing a "Library of Lectures" with passionate lectures in public health from across the world such as seen here from South Africa. We propose to expand this to all areas of research in health. Our program consists of: Shareware: A Global faculty is developing and sharing their best, most passionate lectures. This benefits all. The experienced faculty member can beef up their lectures that are not cutting edge. New instructors reduce preparation time and improve their lectures, as they can employ state of the art lectures from others. Faculty in developing countries have access to current public health information for the first time. The concept is that of a library of lectures for all to use is in many ways similar to that of "shareware" on the computer. Statistical Quality Assurance: We have established a Deming Model of statistical quality control to monitor lectures over time Supporting the teachers: The Library of Lectures consists of exciting lectures by public health experts in the field. The classroom teacher "takes" them out for free like a library book. There is no direct teaching of students from a distance, rather the concept of the system is to provide cutting edge material for all faculty to present. Hypertext comic book: The lectures are icon driven, and the students can go deep into the Internet for more information through hyperlinks. It is based upon PowerPoint for ease of usage Presentation Speed: We have discovered technologies to speed access to lectures world wide Text books: The British Medical Association has put 2 current text books on line for us Multilingual: For global use, this must be multilingual, the first lecture is in 8 languages Voice-Sound Video: We are using state of the art Internet voice-video systems. We soon will be using "clickable" voice video We have published over 68 papers in leading medical journals including the Lancet, British Medical Journal, Nature Medicine among others. We are working with PAHO to put mirrored servers into every medical school in the Americas this year, with 5 years we should reach globally all medical schools. WHO has developed a Supercourse. Initial pilot studies reveal that 2500 individuals will see each lecture each year, which is 50 times that of our classroom teaching. We have beta tested lectures in 2 centers in Japan and one in South Africa with very positive results. We are now dev
Despite impressive worldwide improvements in oral health, inequalities in oral health status among and within countries remain a daunting public health challenge. Oral health inequalities arise from a complex web of health determinants, including social, behavioral, economic, genetic, environmental, and health system factors. Eliminating these inequalities cannot be accomplished in isolation of oral health from overall health, or without recognizing that oral health is influenced at multiple individual, family, community, and health systems levels. For several reasons, this is an opportune time for global efforts targeted at reducing oral health inequalities. Global health is increasingly viewed not just as a humanitarian obligation, but also as a vehicle for health diplomacy and part of the broader mission to reduce poverty, build stronger economies, and strengthen global security. Despite the global economic recession, there are trends that portend well for support of global health efforts: increased globalization of research and development, growing investment from private philanthropy, an absolute growth of spending in research and innovation, and an enhanced interest in global health among young people. More systematic and far-reaching efforts will be required to address oral health inequalities through the engagement of oral health funders and sponsors of research, with partners from multiple public and private sectors. The oral health community must be "at the table" with other health disciplines and create opportunities for eliminating inequalities through collaborations that can harness both the intellectual and financial resources of multiple sectors and institutions. PMID:21490232
Garcia, I; Tabak, L A
This paper assesses progress in the development of a global framework for responding to non-communicable diseases, as reflected in the policies and initiatives of the World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank and the UN: the institutions most capable of shaping a coherent global policy. Responding to the global burden of chronic disease requires a strategic assessment of the global processes that are likely to be most effective in generating commitment to policy change at country level, and in influencing industry behaviour. WHO has adopted a legal process with tobacco (the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control), but a non-legal, advocacy-based approach with diet and physical activity (the Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health). The paper assesses the merits of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the FCTC as distinct global processes for advancing health development, before considering what lessons might be learned for enhancing the implementation of the Global Strategy on Diet. While global partnerships, economic incentives, and international legal instruments could each contribute to a more effective global response to chronic diseases, the paper makes a special case for the development of international legal standards in select areas of diet and nutrition, as a strategy for ensuring that the health of future generations does not become dependent on corporate charity and voluntary commitments. A broader frame of reference for lifestyle-related chronic diseases is needed: one that draws together WHO's work in tobacco, nutrition and physical activity, and that envisages selective use of international legal obligations, non-binding recommendations, advocacy and policy advice as tools of choice for promoting different elements of the strategy.
Magnusson, Roger S
This paper assesses progress in the development of a global framework for responding to non-communicable diseases, as reflected in the policies and initiatives of the World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank and the UN: the institutions most capable of shaping a coherent global policy. Responding to the global burden of chronic disease requires a strategic assessment of the global processes that are likely to be most effective in generating commitment to policy change at country level, and in influencing industry behaviour. WHO has adopted a legal process with tobacco (the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control), but a non-legal, advocacy-based approach with diet and physical activity (the Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health). The paper assesses the merits of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the FCTC as distinct global processes for advancing health development, before considering what lessons might be learned for enhancing the implementation of the Global Strategy on Diet. While global partnerships, economic incentives, and international legal instruments could each contribute to a more effective global response to chronic diseases, the paper makes a special case for the development of international legal standards in select areas of diet and nutrition, as a strategy for ensuring that the health of future generations does not become dependent on corporate charity and voluntary commitments. A broader frame of reference for lifestyle-related chronic diseases is needed: one that draws together WHO's work in tobacco, nutrition and physical activity, and that envisages selective use of international legal obligations, non-binding recommendations, advocacy and policy advice as tools of choice for promoting different elements of the strategy. PMID:17519005
Magnusson, Roger S
Set in 2000, with a completion date of 2015, the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals is approaching, at which time a new global development infrastructure will become operational. Unsurprisingly, the discussions on goals, topics, priorities and monitoring and evaluation are gaining momentum. But this is a critical juncture. Over a decade of development programming offers a unique opportunity to reflect on its structure, function and purpose in a contemporary global context. This article examines the topic from an analytical health perspective and identifies universal health equity as an operational and analytical priority to encourage attention to the root causes of unnecessary and unfair illness and disease from the perspectives of those for whom the issues have most direct relevance.
BACKGROUND: Global health research is essential for development. A major issue is the inequitable distribution of research efforts and funds directed towards populations suffering the world's greatest health problems. This imbalance is fostering major attempts at redirecting research to the health problems of low and middle income countries. Following the creation of the Coalition for Global Health Research – Canada
Hélène Delisle; Janet Hatcher Roberts; Michelle Munro; Lori Jones; Theresa W Gyorkos
Translational informatics (TI) is extremely important for the pharmaceutical industry, especially as the bar for regulatory approval of new medications is set higher and higher. This paper will explore three specific areas in the drug development lifecycle, from tools developed by precompetitive consortia to standardized clinical data collection to the effective delivery of medications using clinical decision support, in which TI has a major role to play. Advancing TI will require investment in new tools and algorithms, as well as ensuring that translational issues are addressed early in the design process of informatics projects, and also given higher weight in funding or publication decisions. Ultimately, the source of translational tools and differences between academia and industry are secondary, as long as they move towards the shared goal of improving health.
Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to contribute to filling gaps in digitized biodiversity data; (b) assisting countries potentially in need (for example mega-diverse) to mobilize resources and collect data that could be used in decision-making; and (c) allowing identification of which biodiversity informatics-resourced countries could afford to assist countries lacking in biodiversity informatics capacity, and which data-rich countries should benefit most from such help.
In the last twenty years the rapid change in the informatics sector has had economic and social impact on private and government activities. The Supreme Council for Science and Technology of Turkey assigned highest priority to the informatics in its meeti...
Supplementary to matter and energy, information is the third essence for modeling the natural world. An emerging discipline known as cognitive informatics (CI) is developed recently that forms a profound interdisciplinary study of cognitive and information sciences, and tackles the common root problems sharing by informatics, computing, software engineering, artificial intelligence, cognitive science, neuropsychology, philosophy, linguistics, and life science. CI
The global population has now exceeded 7 billion, and forests and other resources around the world are being irreversibly depleted for energy, food, shelter, material goods, and drugs to accommodate population needs. For most of the world's population, plants, based on many well-established systems of medicine, in either crude or extract form, represent the foundation of primary health care for the foreseeable future. Contemporary harvesting methods for medicinal plants are severely depleting these critical indigenous resources. However, maintaining and enhancing the availability of quality medicinal agents on a sustainable basis is an unappreciated public health care concept. To accomplish these goals for future health care, and restore the health of the Earth, a profound paradigm shift is necessary: ALL medicinal agents should be regarded as a sustainable commodity, irrespective of their source. Several approaches to enhancing the availability of safe and efficacious plant-based medicinal agents will be presented including integrated strategies to manifest the four pillars (information, botany, chemistry, and biology) for medicinal plant quality control. These integrated initiatives involve information systems, DNA barcoding, metabolomics, biotechnology, nanotechnology, in-field analysis of medicinal plants, and the application of new detection techniques for the development of medicinal plants with enhanced levels of safe and reproducible biological agents. PMID:21308611
Cordell, Geoffrey A
Huge political, economical and social changes have occurred in Russia to the current moment. These changes led to restructuring of Russian healthcare as a whole and caused new demands on healthcare informatics. The state priority program of informatics of Russian healthcare has been created by the Ministry of Health in order to respond to the new tasks. During the last
S. Elioutina; V. Tarasov
Lipid mediator informatics is an emerging area denoted to the identification of bioactive lipid mediators (LMs) and their biosynthetic profiles and pathways. LM informatics and proteomics applied to inflammation, systems tissues research provides a powerful means of uncovering key biomarkers for novel processes in health and disease. By incorporating them with system biology analysis, we review here our initial steps
Yan Lu; Song Hong; Katherine Gotlinger; Charles N. Serhan
Health care providers have a basic responsibility to protect patients from accidental harm. At the institutional level, creating safe health care organizations necessitates a systematic approach. Effective use of informatics to enhance safety requires the establishment and use of standards for concept definitions and for data exchange, development of acceptable models for knowledge representation, incentives for adoption of electronic health
Peter M. Kilbridge; David C. Classen
As a college course, global public health covers topics that affect individuals' welfare and thus should be accessible to the public, providing information to help people make informed decisions about their health. This article discusses the creation of DMP 844: Global Health, a graduate-level course in the College of Veterinary Medicine's…
Anders, Brent A.; Briggs, Deborah J.; Hai-Jew, Shalin; Caby, Zachary; Werick, Mary
The article deals with the issues of impact of globalization on population health and public health. The positive and negative aspects of this process are analyzed. The role of international organizations (UN, WHO, UNESCO, ILO, UNISEF) is demonstrated in the area of management of globalization impact on public health of different countries, Russia included. PMID:23033581
Context: Accelerated globalization has produced obvious changes in diplomatic purposes and practices. Health issues have become increasingly preeminent in the evolving global diplomacy agenda. More leaders in academia and policy are thinking about how to structure and utilize diplomacy in pursuit of global health goals. Methods: In this article, we describe the context, practice, and components of global health diplomacy, as applied operationally. We examine the foundations of various approaches to global health diplomacy, along with their implications for the policies shaping the international public health and foreign policy environments. Based on these observations, we propose a taxonomy for the subdiscipline. Findings: Expanding demands on global health diplomacy require a delicate combination of technical expertise, legal knowledge, and diplomatic skills that have not been systematically cultivated among either foreign service or global health professionals. Nonetheless, high expectations that global health initiatives will achieve development and diplomatic goals beyond the immediate technical objectives may be thwarted by this gap. Conclusions: The deepening links between health and foreign policy require both the diplomatic and global health communities to reexamine the skills, comprehension, and resources necessary to achieve their mutual objectives.
Katz, Rebecca; Kornblet, Sarah; Arnold, Grace; Lief, Eric; Fischer, Julie E
Strengthened efforts to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals by 2015 are urgently needed. A fundamental step toward achieving these goals is strengthening global partnerships for development. This article describes critical challenges and opportunities in global health and the social responsibility of the nursing profession in this area. Examples and suggestions for nursing action are provided for consideration by those interested in influencing global health. Engaging in global health activities such as study abroad programs, interprofessional exchanges, continuing education workshops, and seminars with a global health focus can have significant implications for nursing education, research, policy, and practice. Equipping nurses with the leadership skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed to advance global health is integral in the delivery of effective, culturally relevant health care. PMID:22074213
Opollo, Jackline G; Bond, Mary Lou; Gray, Jennifer; Lail-Davis, Vivian J
The 2001 U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) Biomedical Informatics Roadmap Meeting was devoted to developing a strategic plan in four focus areas: Hospital and Clinical Informatics, E-Health, Combat Health Informatics, and Bioinformatics and Biomedical Computation. The driving force of this Roadmap Meeting was the recent accelerated pace of change in biomedical informatics in which emerging technologies have the potential to affect significantly the Army research portfolio and investment strategy in these focus areas. The meeting was structured so that the first two days were devoted to presentations from experts in the field, including representatives from the three services, other government agencies, academia, and the private sector, and the morning of the last day was devoted to capturing specific biomedical informatics research needs in the four focus areas. This white paper summarizes the key findings and recommendations and should be a powerful tool for the crafting of future requests for proposals to help align USAMRMC new strategic research investments with new developments and emerging technologies. PMID:12223503
Reifman, Jaques; Gilbert, Gary R; Fagan, Lawrence; Satava, Richard
The current phase of globalization represents a “double-edged sword” challenge facing public health practitioners and health policy makers. The first “edge” throws light on two constructs in the field of public health: global health (formerly international health) and globalized public health. The second “edge” is that of global governance, and raises the question, “how can we construct public health regulations that adequately respond to both global and local complexities related to the two constructs mentioned earlier (global health and globalized public health)?” The two constructs call for the development of norms that will assure sustained population-wide health improvement and these two constructs have their own conceptual tools and theoretical models that permit a better understanding of them. In this paper, we introduce the “globalized public health” construct and we present an interactive comprehensive framework for critically analyzing contemporary globalization’s influences on the field of public health. “Globalized public health”, simultaneously a theoretical model and a conceptual framework, concerns the transformation of the field of public health in the sociohistorical context of globalization. The model is the fruit of an original theoretical research study conducted from 2005 to 2008 (“contextualized research,” Gibbons’ Mode II of knowledge production), founded on a QUAL-quant sequential mixed-method design. This research also reflects our political and ideological position, fuelled with aspirations of social democracy and cosmopolitical values. It is profoundly anchored in the pragmatic approach to globalization, looking to “reconcile” the market and equity. The model offers several features to users: (1) it is transdisciplinary; (2) it is interactive (CD-ROM); (3) it is nonlinear (nonlinear interrelations between the contextual globalization and the field of public health); (4) it is synchronic/diachronic (a double-crossed perspective permits analysis of global social change, the emergence of global agency and the transmutation of the field of public health, in the full complexity of their nonlinear interaction); (5) it offers five characteristics as an auto-eco-organized system of social interactions, or dynamic, nonlinear sociohistorical system. The model features a visual interface (five interrelated figures), a structure of 30 “integrator concepts” that integrates 114 other element-parts via 1,300 hypertext links. The model is both a knowledge translation tool and an interactive heuristic guide designed for practitioners and researchers in public health/community health/population health, as well as for decision-makers at all levels.
In this podcast, we talk to Professor Vikram Patel about the impact of global mental health in the field of medicine, and discuss the initiatives and platforms being developed to promote capacity building, research, policy and advocacy within the established Centre for Global Mental Health. The anticipated challenges, controversies, and future directions for this discipline of global health are highlighted as well. The podcast for this interview is available at: http://www.biomedcentral.com/sites/2999/download/Patel.mp3.
The Taubman Health Sciences Library (THL) collaborates with health sciences schools to provide information skills instruction for students preparing for international experiences. THL enhances students' global health learning through predeparture instruction for students who are involved in global health research, clinical internships, and international collaborations. This includes teaching international literature searching skills, providing country-specific data sources, building awareness of relevant mobile resources, and encouraging investigation of international news. Information skills empower creation of stronger global partnerships. Use of information resources has enhanced international research and training experiences, built lifelong learning foundations, and contributed to the university's global engagement. THL continues to assess predeparture instruction.
Rana, Gurpreet K.
The Taubman Health Sciences Library (THL) collaborates with health sciences schools to provide information skills instruction for students preparing for international experiences. THL enhances students' global health learning through predeparture instruction for students who are involved in global health research, clinical internships, and international collaborations. This includes teaching international literature searching skills, providing country-specific data sources, building awareness of relevant mobile resources, and encouraging investigation of international news. Information skills empower creation of stronger global partnerships. Use of information resources has enhanced international research and training experiences, built lifelong learning foundations, and contributed to the university's global engagement. THL continues to assess predeparture instruction. PMID:24860266
Rana, Gurpreet K
The current phase of globalization represents a "double-edged sword" challenge facing public health practitioners and health policy makers. The first "edge" throws light on two constructs in the field of public health: global health (formerly international health) and globalized public health. The second "edge" is that of global governance, and raises the question, "how can we construct public health regulations that adequately respond to both global and local complexities related to the two constructs mentioned earlier (global health and globalized public health)?" The two constructs call for the development of norms that will assure sustained population-wide health improvement and these two constructs have their own conceptual tools and theoretical models that permit a better understanding of them. In this paper, we introduce the "globalized public health" construct and we present an interactive comprehensive framework for critically analyzing contemporary globalization's influences on the field of public health. "Globalized public health", simultaneously a theoretical model and a conceptual framework, concerns the transformation of the field of public health in the sociohistorical context of globalization. The model is the fruit of an original theoretical research study conducted from 2005 to 2008 ("contextualized research," Gibbons' Mode II of knowledge production), founded on a QUAL-quant sequential mixed-method design. This research also reflects our political and ideological position, fuelled with aspirations of social democracy and cosmopolitical values. It is profoundly anchored in the pragmatic approach to globalization, looking to "reconcile" the market and equity. The model offers several features to users: (1) it is transdisciplinary; (2) it is interactive (CD-ROM); (3) it is nonlinear (nonlinear interrelations between the contextual globalization and the field of public health); (4) it is synchronic/diachronic (a double-crossed perspective permits analysis of global social change, the emergence of global agency and the transmutation of the field of public health, in the full complexity of their nonlinear interaction); (5) it offers five characteristics as an auto-eco-organized system of social interactions, or dynamic, nonlinear sociohistorical system. The model features a visual interface (five interrelated figures), a structure of 30 "integrator concepts" that integrates 114 other element-parts via 1,300 hypertext links. The model is both a knowledge translation tool and an interactive heuristic guide designed for practitioners and researchers in public health/community health/population health, as well as for decision-makers at all levels. PMID:22312210
Background The Strategic Health IT Advanced Research Projects (SHARP) program seeks to conquer well-understood challenges in medical informatics through breakthrough research. Two SHARP centers have found alignment in their methodological needs: (1) members of the National Center for Cognitive Informatics and Decision-making (NCCD) have developed knowledge bases to support problem-oriented summarizations of patient data, and (2) Substitutable Medical Apps, Reusable Technologies (SMART), which is a platform for reusable medical apps that can run on participating platforms connected to various electronic health records (EHR). Combining the work of these two centers will ensure wide dissemination of new methods for synthesized views of patient data. Informatics for Integrating Biology and the Bedside (i2b2) is an NIH-funded clinical research data repository platform in use at over 100 sites worldwide. By also working with a co-occurring initiative to SMART-enabling i2b2, we can confidently write one app that can be used extremely broadly. Objective Our goal was to facilitate development of intuitive, problem-oriented views of the patient record using NCCD knowledge bases that would run in any EHR. To do this, we developed a collaboration between the two SHARPs and an NIH center, i2b2. Methods First, we implemented collaborative tools to connect researchers at three institutions. Next, we developed a patient summarization app using the SMART platform and a previously validated NCCD problem-medication linkage knowledge base derived from the National Drug File-Reference Terminology (NDF-RT). Finally, to SMART-enable i2b2, we implemented two new Web service “cells” that expose the SMART application programming interface (API), and we made changes to the Web interface of i2b2 to host a “carousel” of SMART apps. Results We deployed our SMART-based, NDF-RT-derived patient summarization app in this SMART-i2b2 container. It displays a problem-oriented view of medications and presents a line-graph display of laboratory results. Conclusions This summarization app can be run in any EHR environment that either supports SMART or runs SMART-enabled i2b2. This i2b2 “clinical bridge” demonstrates a pathway for reusable app development that does not require EHR vendors to immediately adopt the SMART API. Apps can be developed in SMART and run by clinicians in the i2b2 repository, reusing clinical data extracted from EHRs. This may encourage the adoption of SMART by supporting SMART app development until EHRs adopt the platform. It also allows a new variety of clinical SMART apps, fueled by the broad aggregation of data types available in research repositories. The app (including its knowledge base) and SMART-i2b2 are open-source and freely available for download.
McCoy, Allison B; Wright, Adam; Wattanasin, Nich; Sittig, Dean F; Murphy, Shawn N
Programs in human health and global security should be incorporated into medical school curricula. Information about nuclear arms proliferation and unmet human health needs will help physicians exert a critical leadership role. (SK)
The ‘crisis in human resources’ in the health sector has been described as one of the most pressing global health issues of our time. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the world faces a global shortage of almost 4.3 million doctors, midwives, nurses, and other healthcare professionals. A global undersupply of these threatens the quality and sustainability of health systems worldwide. This undersupply is concurrent with globalization and the resulting liberalization of markets, which allow health workers to offer their services in countries other than those of their origin. The opportunities of health workers to seek employment abroad has led to a complex migration pattern, characterized by a flow of health professionals from low- to high-income countries. This global migration pattern has sparked a broad international debate about the consequences for health systems worldwide, including questions about sustainability, justice, and global social accountabilities. This article provides a review of this phenomenon and gives an overview of the current scope of health workforce migration patterns. It further focuses on the scientific discourse regarding health workforce migration and its effects on both high- and low-income countries in an interdependent world. The article also reviews the internal and external factors that fuel health worker migration and illustrates how health workforce migration is a classic global health issue of our time. Accordingly, it elaborates on the international community's approach to solving the workforce crisis, focusing in particular on the WHO Code of Practice, established in 2010.
Aluttis, Christoph; Bishaw, Tewabech; Frank, Martina W.
Despite growing public awareness, health systems are struggling under the escalating burden of non-communicable diseases. While personal responsibility is crucial, alone it is insufficient. We argue that one must place themselves within the broader/global context to begin to truly understand the health implications of personal choices. Global citizenship competency has become an integral part of the higher education discourse; this discourse can and should be extended to include global health. A global citizen is someone who is (1) aware of global issues, (2) socially responsible, and (3) civically engaged. From this perspective, personal health is not solely an individual, self-serving act; rather, the consequences of our lifestyle choices and behaviors have far-reaching implications. This paper will argue that, through consciously identifying global health within the constructs of global citizenship, institutions of higher education can play an instrumental role in fostering civically engaged students capable of driving social change. PMID:24836370
Stoner, Lee; Perry, Lane; Wadsworth, Daniel; Stoner, Krystina R; Tarrant, Michael A
The volume comprises extended abstracts of the papers selected for the presentation at the Third International Andrei Ershov Memorial Conference Perspectives of System Informatics, Akademgorodok (Novosibirsk, Russia), July 6- 9, 1999. The main goal of the...
A. Zamulin D. Bjorner M. Broy
Sugary beverages represent a major global threat to the health of all populations. The shifts in distribution, marketing, and sales have made them the plague of the globe in terms of obesity, diabetes, and a host of other chronic health problems. The fructose-laden beverages have unique properties that lead to lack of dietary compensation and direct adverse effects on our health. Global efforts to limit marketing and sales are necessary to protect the health of the planet. PMID:22867870
Popkin, Barry M
In the last twenty years the rapid change in the informatics sector has had economic and social impact on private and government activities. The Supreme Council for Science and Technology of Turkey assigned highest priority to the informatics in its meeting in February 1993. With this advice TUBITAK (The Scientific and Technical Research Council of Turkey) intends to give a strong impulse to development of a research policy in this field.
Clinical guidelines are heralded as a positive contribution to improving quality of care and ensuring the effectiveness of care. From the perspective of the health services researcher, the authors propose a model of how informatics can support the implementation of clinical guidelines and their integration into systems for decision support and clinical audit. Each element of the model is discussed
Lesley Duff; Anne Casey
Recent developments in medical informatics research have afforded possibilities for great advances in health care delivery. These exciting opportunities also present formidable challenges to the implementation and integration of technologies in the workplace. As in most domains, there is a gulf between technologic artifacts and end users. Since medical practice is a human endeavor, there is a need for bridging
Vimla L Patel; David R Kaufman
Rio+20's proposed Sustainable Development Goals have the potential to redefine the course of international action on climate change. They recognise that environmental health is inextricably linked with human health, and that environmental sustainability is of paramount importance in safeguarding global health. Competition entrants were asked to discuss ways of making global health a central component of international sustainable development initiatives and environmental policy, using one or two concrete examples PMID:24099214
Boyages, Costa S
Globalization is a key challenge to public health, especially in developing countries, but the linkages between globalization and health are complex. Although a growing amount of literature has appeared on the subject, it is piecemeal, and suffers from a lack of an agreed framework for assessing the direct and indirect health effects of different aspects of globalization. This paper presents a conceptual framework for the linkages between economic globalization and health, with the intention that it will serve as a basis for synthesizing existing relevant literature, identifying gaps in knowledge, and ultimately developing national and international policies more favourable to health. The framework encompasses both the indirect effects on health, operating through the national economy, household economies and health-related sectors such as water, sanitation and education, as well as more direct effects on population-level and individual risk factors for health and on the health care system. Proposed also is a set of broad objectives for a programme of action to optimize the health effects of economic globalization. The paper concludes by identifying priorities for research corresponding with the five linkages identified as critical to the effects of globalization on health.
Woodward, D.; Drager, N.; Beaglehole, R.; Lipson, D.
To improve on-orbit clinical capabilities by developing and providing operational support for intelligent, robust, reliable, and secure, enterprise-wide and comprehensive health care and biomedical informatics systems with increasing levels of autonomy, for use on Earth, low Earth orbit & exploration class missions. Biomedical Informatics is an emerging discipline that has been defined as the study, invention, and implementation of structures and algorithms to improve communication, understanding and management of medical information. The end objective of biomedical informatics is the coalescing of data, knowledge, and the tools necessary to apply that data and knowledge in the decision-making process, at the time and place that a decision needs to be made.
Johnson-Throop, Kathy A.
Requirements and approaches of Software Engineering education in the field of Medical Informatics are described with respect to the impact of (1) experiences characterizing the "software misery", (2) status and tendencies in software methodology, and (3) educational status and needs in computer science education influenced by the controversy "theoretical versus practical education". Special attention is directed toward the growing importance of analysis, design methods, and techniques in the professional spectrum of Medical Informatics, the relevance of general principles of systems engineering in health care, the potential of non-procedural programming paradigms, and the intersection of Artificial Intelligence and education. Realizations of and experiences with programs in the field of Software Engineering are reported with respect to special requirements in Medical Informatics. PMID:2695780
Leven, F J
Four oral mucosal infections were identified as Global Oral Health Priorities: (a) HIV and associated viral, bacterial, and fungal infections; (b) tuberculosis; (c) NOMA; and (d) sexually transmitted diseases. Huge global inequalities exist in all four. HIV-associated infections constitute the major challenge. Oral manifestations of AIDS can be specifically diagnostic, indicating a significant role for dentists within health teams. The
S. Challacombe; M. Chidzonga; M. Glick; T. Hodgson; M. Magalhães; C. Shiboski; F. Owotade; R. Ranganathan; S. Naidoo
Knowledge and skills for global health program design, implementation and monitoring is an expectation for practicing public health professionals. Major health education professional organizations including American Association for Health Education (AAHE), Society of Public Health Education (SOPHE) and International Union for Health Promotion and…
Geiger, Brian F.; Davis, Thomas M.; Beric, Bojana; Devlin, Michele K.
Mortality rates of children less than 5 years old range from <10 per 1000 live births in industrialized countries to >100 in the world's poorest countries. The fact that in New York City infant mortality fell from approximately 140 deaths per 1000 live births in 1900 to <60 per 1000 by 1930 indicates what can be achieved through improvements in public health, such as the provision of clean piped water, sewage disposal and fresh refrigeration. For children living in impoverished conditions today, excess mortality is largely due to infectious diseases for which there are effective vaccines. Thus, certain specific vaccines can reduce mortality and morbidity, improve quality of life and contribute to economic development. However, because many vaccines and the means to deliver them are beyond the financial resources of countries with the highest childhood mortality rates, strategies have been devised to provide vaccines to the most needy populations. These strategies include initiatives by the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, the International Finance Facility for Immunization and the Advanced Market Commitment, which together with various governments, international agencies and charitable foundations are providing funds to make life-saving vaccines available to the world's most needy children. PMID:19308074
Levine, Myron M; Robins-Browne, Roy
Objectives: The objective is to highlight the important role that librarians have in teaching within a successful medical informatics program. Librarians regularly utilize skills that, although not technology dependent, are essential to conducting computer-based research. The Metropolis analogy is used to introduce the part librarians play as informatics partners. Science fiction is a modern mythology that, beyond a technical exterior, has lasting value in its ability to reflect the human condition. The teaching of medical informatics, an intersection of technology and knowledge, is also most relevant when it transcends the operation of databases and systems. Librarians can teach students to understand, research, and utilize information beyond specific technologies. Methods: A survey of twenty-six informatics programs was conducted during 2002, with specific emphasis on the role of the library service. Results: The survey demonstrated that librarians currently do have a central role in informatics instruction, and that library-focused skills form a significant part of the curriculum in many of those programs. In addition, librarians have creative opportunities to enhance their involvement in informatics training. As a sample program in the study, the development of the informatics course at the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is included. Conclusions: Medical informatics training is a wonderful opportunity for librarians to collaborate with professionals from the sciences and other information disciplines. Librarians' unique combination of human research and technology skills provides a valuable contribution to any program.
King, Samuel Bishop; MacDonald, Kate
The advent of digital imaging and information management within the radiology department has prompted the growth of a new radiology subspecialty: Radiology Informatics. With appropriate training, radiologists can become leaders in Medical Informatics and guide the growth of this technology throughout the medical enterprise. Radiology Informatics fellowships, as well as radiology residency programs, provide inconsistent exposure to all the elements
Barton F. Branstetter IV; Brian J. Bartholmai; David S. Channin
As new directions and priorities emerge in health care, nursing informatics leaders must prepare to guide the profession appropriately. To use an analogy, where a road bends or changes directions, guideposts indicate how drivers can stay on course. The AMIA Nursing Informatics Working Group (NIWG) produced this white paper as the product of a meeting convened: 1) to describe anticipated nationwide changes in demographics, health care quality, and health care informatics; 2) to assess the potential impact of genomic medicine and of new threats to society; 3) to align AMIA NIWG resources with emerging priorities; and 4) to identify guideposts in the form of an agenda to keep the NIWG on course in light of new opportunities. The anticipated societal changes provide opportunities for nursing informatics. Resources described below within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the National Committee for Health and Vital Statistics (NCVHS) can help to align AMIA NIWG with emerging priorities. The guideposts consist of priority areas for action in informatics, nursing education, and research. Nursing informatics professionals will collaborate as full participants in local, national, and international efforts related to the guideposts in order to make significant contributions that empower patients and providers for safer health care.
McCormick, Kathleen A.; Delaney, Connie J.; Brennan, Patricia Flatley; Effken, Judith A.; Kendrick, Kathie; Murphy, Judy; Skiba, Diane J.; Warren, Judith J.; Weaver, Charlotte A.; Weiner, Betsy; Westra, Bonnie L.
A strong primary health care system is essential to provide effective and efficient health care in both resource-rich and resource-poor countries. Although a direct link has not been proven, we can reasonably expect better economic status when the health of the population is improved. Research in primary care is essential to inform practice and to develop better health systems and
John W. Beasley; Barbara Starfield; Chris van Weel; Walter W. Rosser; Cynthia L. Haq
The United States spends more than the rest of the world on healthcare. In 2000, the U.S. health bill was 1.3 trillion dollars, 14.5% of its gross domestic product. Yet, according to the WHO World Health Report 2000, the United States ranked 37th of 191 member nations in overall health system performance. Racial/ethnic disparities in health outcomes are the most obvious examples of an unbalanced healthcare system. This presentation will examine health disparities in the United States and reveal how health disparities among and within countries affect the health and well-being of the African Diaspora.
Cox, Raymond L.
This commentary argues that there are three major crises confronting global health: ongoing financial crises; deepening ecological crises; and rapidly escalating income and wealth inequalities within and between nations. Global rhetorical responses to these crises frequently invoke policy sentiments similar to those advised by the 2008 WHO Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH). However, actual policy decisions run counter to the evidence reviewed by the Commission, and its final report recommendations. Failure to re-regulate financial capitalism, introduce regulatory standards for transnational companies, or subordinate trade and investment liberalization treaties to development goals and human rights treaties will exacerbate global health inequities into the future. More positively, there is increasing support for systems of global taxation. The challenge for global health, however, will remain the willingness of states to make domestic and foreign policy choices that strengthen income redistribution, economic regulation, and citizen rights. PMID:22277972
Informatics is the study of the application of information technology. The focus of studies within an Informatics program is on particular problem domain areas, including scientific domains like biology or chemistry, but also nonscientific domains like music, fine arts, or business. In this paper we describe our experience with the development of a capstone course for undergraduate Informatics students. In
Dennis P. Groth; Matthew J. Hottell
Informatics is a field that is gaining importance around the globe, and the National Institute of Informatics (NII) in Japan seeks "to advance integrated research and development activities in information-related fields, including networking, software, and content." First-time visitors should note that most of the materials in the site can be located in sections such as "Research & Project" and "Services". Before delving into these areas, visitors may wish to take a look at the most recent issue of "NII Today" via the homepage. Afterwards, visitors should look over the "Research" area. Here they will find summaries of research projects, working papers, and information about their international partnerships. The "Services" area is well worth a look as it contains links to additional informatics databases that will be of use to scholars and students within the field.
For many years the World Health Organization (WHO) has provided the global direction and leadership that has helped to shape the way we view health promotion today. The future role of the WHO is now uncertain and the lack of global leadership for health promotion and identification of who will provide the future direction are issues that need to be addressed. The crucial question posed in this commentary is: Where are the individuals and organisations that will provide the global leadership and vision for health promotion in the future? We need named champions for the future leadership of health promotion practice - people and organisations who offer a leadership style that will maintain its global profile, be representative across sectors and have the ability to maintain its political efficacy. The two key health promotion approaches, top-down and bottom-up, do not always share the same goals, and they demand different styles of leadership. This is an important consideration in our goal to find champions who can work with both approaches and understand how to accommodate them as a part of the future direction of health promotion. This commentary raises key questions to stimulate discussion and action towards addressing the lack of global leadership in health promotion. It discusses some of the key players, leadership characteristics and the contradictions in style that are inherent in achieving a goal of charismatic global champions. PMID:24801785
In this podcast, we talk to Professor Vikram Patel about the impact of global mental health in the field of medicine, and discuss the initiatives and platforms being developed to promote capacity building, research, policy and advocacy within the established Centre for Global Mental Health. The anticipated challenges, controversies, and future directions for this discipline of global health are highlighted as well.The podcast for this interview is available at: http://www.biomedcentral.com/sites/2999/download/Patel.mp3. PMID:24625028
The advent of digital imaging and information management within the radiology department has prompted the growth of a new radiology subspecialty: Radiology Informatics. With appropriate training, radiologists can become leaders in Medical Informatics and guide the growth of this technology throughout the medical enterprise. Radiology Informatics fellowships, as well as radiology residency programs, provide inconsistent exposure to all the elements of this subspecialty, in part because of the lack of a common curriculum. The Society for Computer Applications in Radiology (SCAR) has developed a curriculum intended to guide training in Radiology Informatics. This article is the first in a series presented by SCAR and the Journal of Digital Imaging, titled "Reviews in Radiology Informatics." The series is designed to sample from each of the major components in the Radiology Informatics Curriculum, to spark further interest in the field and provide content for informatics education. PMID:15692866
Branstetter, Barton F; Bartholmai, Brian J; Channin, David S
Populations today face increasing health risks from human-induced regional and global environmental changes and resultant ecological nonsustainability. Localized environmental degradation that has long accompanied population growth, industrialization, and rising consumerism has now acquired a global and often systemic dimension (e.g., climate change, disrupted nitrogen cycling, biodiversity loss). Thus, the economic intensification and technological advances that previously contributed to health gains have now expanded such that humanity's environmental (and ecological) footprint jeopardizes global population health. International data show, in general, a positive correlation of a population's health with level of affluence and size of per-person footprint. Yet, beyond a modest threshold, larger footprints afford negligible health gain and may impair health (e.g., via the rise of obesity). Furthermore, some lower-income countries have attained high levels of health. Many changes now needed to promote ecological (and social) sustainability will benefit local health. Continued improvement of global health could thus coexist with an equitably shared global environmental footprint. PMID:21219161
McMichael, A J; Butler, C D
In the wake of dynamic economic and political transitions worldwide, the Institute of Medicine recently released its report advocating investments in global health from the United States (US). The expert panel reinforces the ‘transnational and interdisciplinary’ nature of global health research and practice as an endeavor ‘to improve health and achieve greater equity for all people worldwide.’ This report was judiciously timed given the growing recognition of global health, and is also acknowledged for incorporating themes that are particularly pertinent to the twenty-first century. New paradigms are introduced, denouncing the dichotomous distinction between rich and poor countries with the rapidly transitioning countries emerging as global powers, and affirming the need for models of respectful partnership and wider translation of science into practice. Cultivating sustainable partnerships and investing in the understanding and combat of diseases worldwide will become increasingly important for the US to maintain its global competitiveness, and may offer lessons in innovation, efficiency, and organization of institutions and human resources.
Ali, Mohammed K.; Venkat Narayan, K.M.
Background: There is a growing body of evidence linking health and well-being to key business issues. Despite this, corporate uptake of workplace health promotion programmes has been slow outside the USA. One possible reason for this is the lack of a generally available health risk measure that is quick and easy to administer and produces data that is rich enough
Peter R Mills
Nearly half the world's population now lives in urban settlements. Cities offer the lure of better employment, education, health care, and culture; and they contribute disproportionately to national economies. However, rapid and often unplanned urban growth is often associated with poverty, environmental degradation and population demands that outstrip service capacity. These conditions place human health at risk. Reliable urban health
Melinda Moore; Philip Gould; Barbara S. Keary
Globalization of trade, marketing and investment has important implications for public health, both negative and positive. This article considers the implications of the single package of World Trade Organization (WTO) agreements for public health research and policy, focusing on three themes: commodities, intellectual property rights, and health services. The main aims of the analysis are as follows: to identify how trade issues are associated with the transnationalization of health risks and possible benefits; to identify key areas of research; and to suggest policy-relevant advice and interventions on trade and health issues. The next wave of international trade law will need to take more account of global public health issues. However, to become more engaged in global trade debates, the public health community must gain an understanding of the health effects of global trade agreements. It must also ensure that its own facts are correct, so that public health is not blindly used for political ends, such as justifying unwarranted economic protectionism. "Healthy trade" policies, based on firm empirical evidence and designed to improve health status, are an important step towards reaching a more sustainable form of trade liberalization. PMID:10885181
Bettcher, D W; Yach, D; Guindon, G E
Context.-The mechanics of the practice of medicine in general and of pathology in particular is evolving rapidly with the rise in the use of electronic information systems for managing the care of individual patients, including the ordering and reporting of laboratory tests, maintaining the health of served populations, and documenting the full range of health care activities. Pathologists currently in practice and those in training need to acquire additional skills in informatics to be prepared to maintain a central role in patient care. Objective.-To summarize the evolving landscape of pathology informatics, with particular attention to the preparation of pathologists for this discipline and to the possible influence of the new subspecialty certification in clinical informatics. Data Sources.-Most of the information discussed is drawn from the authors' direct experience with informatics, resident and fellow education, and the organizations supporting these activities in pathology. Conclusions.-The increasing reliance of medical practice on electronic health records and other clinical information systems is creating a greater need for physicians skilled in the use and management of these tools. The establishment of clinical informatics as a formal subspecialty in medicine will likely help secure a role for physicians within information management structures at health care institutions. Pathologists must actively engage in informatics to assure that our specialty is appropriately recognized and represented in this growing discipline. PMID:24678681
Sinard, John H; Powell, Suzanne Z; Karcher, Donald S
Paper presents an overview of the EU funded Project of Curriculum Development for Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Specialist Study in Medical Informatics named MEDINFO to be introduced in Croatia. The target group for the program is formed by professionals in any of the areas of medicine, IT professionals working on applications of IT for health and researchers and teachers in medical informatics. In addition to Croatian students, the program will also provide opportunity for enrolling students from a wider region of Southeast Europe. Project partners are two faculties of the University of Zagreb - Faculty of Organization and Informatics from Varaždin and School of Medicine, Andrija Štampar School of Public Health from Zagreb with the Croatian Society for Medical Informatics, Croatian Chamber of Economy, and Ericsson Nikola Tesla Company as associates. PMID:24743088
Hercigonja-Szekeres, Mira; Simi?, Diana; Božikov, Jadranka; Vondra, Petra
At a crossroads, global public health surveillance exists in a fragmented state. Slow to detect, register, confirm, and analyze cases of public health significance, provide feedback, and communicate timely and useful information to stakeholders, global surveillance is neither maximally effective nor optimally efficient. Stakeholders lack a globa surveillance consensus policy and strategy; officials face inadequate training and scarce resources.Three movements now set the stage for transformation of surveillance: 1) adoption by Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO) of the revised International Health Regulations (IHR); 2) maturation of information sciences and the penetration of information technologies to distal parts of the globe; and 3) consensus that the security and public health communities have overlapping interests and a mutual benefit in supporting public health functions. For these to enhance surveillance competencies, eight prerequisites should be in place: politics, policies, priorities, perspectives, procedures, practices, preparation, and payers.To achieve comprehensive, global surveillance, disparities in technical, logistic, governance, and financial capacities must be addressed. Challenges to closing these gaps include the lack of trust and transparency; perceived benefit at various levels; global governance to address data power and control; and specified financial support from globa partners.We propose an end-state perspective for comprehensive, effective and efficient global, multiple-hazard public health surveillance and describe a way forward to achieve it. This end-state is universal, global access to interoperable public health information when it's needed, where it's needed. This vision mitigates the tension between two fundamental human rights: first, the right to privacy, confidentiality, and security of personal health information combined with the right of sovereign, national entities to the ownership and stewardship of public health information; and second, the right of individuals to access real-time public health information that might impact their lives.The vision can be accomplished through an interoperable, global public health grid. Adopting guiding principles, the global community should circumscribe the overlapping interest, shared vision, and mutual benefit between the security and public health communities and define the boundaries. A global forum needs to be established to guide the consensus governance required for public health information sharing in the 21st century. PMID:21143825
McNabb, Scott J N
Interest in global health (GH) among medical students worldwide is measurably increasing. There is a concomitant emphasis on emphasizing globally-relevant health professions education. Through a structured literature review, expert consensus recommendations, and contact with relevant professional organizations, we review the existing state of GH education in US medical schools for which data were available. Several recommendations from professional societies have been developed, along with a renewed emphasis on competencies in global health. The implementation of these recommendations was not observed as being uniform across medical schools, with variation noted in the presence of global health curricula. Recommendations for including GH in medical education are suggested, as well as ways to formalize GH curricula, while providing flexibility for innovation and adaptation
This paper describes how a large, academic health sciences library built capacity for supporting global health at its university and discusses related outcomes. Lean budgets require prioritization and organizational strategy. A committee, with leadership responsibilities assigned to one librarian, guided strategic planning and the pursuit of collaborative, global health outreach activities. A website features case studies and videos of user stories to promote how library partnerships successfully contributed to global health projects. Collaborative partnerships were formed through outreach activities and from follow-up to reference questions. The committee and a librarian's dedicated time established the library's commitment to help the university carry out its ambitious global agenda. PMID:24860264
Lackey, Mellanye; Swogger, Susan; McGraw, Kathleen A
This paper describes how a large, academic health sciences library built capacity for supporting global health at its university and discusses related outcomes. Lean budgets require prioritization and organizational strategy. A committee, with leadership responsibilities assigned to one librarian, guided strategic planning and the pursuit of collaborative, global health outreach activities. A website features case studies and videos of user stories to promote how library partnerships successfully contributed to global health projects. Collaborative partnerships were formed through outreach activities and from follow-up to reference questions. The committee and a librarian's dedicated time established the library's commitment to help the university carry out its ambitious global agenda.
Lackey, Mellanye; Swogger, Susan; McGraw, Kathleen A.
Informatics Workshop September 25-27, 2002 Ellen Feigal, M.D. Acting Director, Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis, NCI Imaging is Key to Cancer Research The ability to detect, through imaging, the molecular changes associated with a tumor cell will improve our ability to detect and stage tumors, select appropriate treatments, monitor the effectiveness of a treatment, and determine prognosis.
The ability to create a big picture of a knowledge domain is valuable to both experts and newcomers, who can use such a picture to orient themselves in the field’s intellectual space, track the dynamics of the field, or discover potential new areas of research. In this chapter we present an overview of medical informatics research by applying domain visualization
Shauna Eggers; Zan Huang; Hsinchun Chen; Lijun Yan; Cathy Larson; Asraa Rashid; Michael Chau; Chienting Lin
ABSTRACT Cognitive informatics (CI) is a new discipline that studies the natural intelligence and internal information processing mechanisms of the brain, as well as the processes involved in perception and cognition. CI provides a coherent set of fundamental theories, and contemporary mathematics, which form the foundation for most information and knowledge based science and engineering disciplines such as computer science,
Given the fragility of individual and population wellbeing in an interdependent world threatened by many overlapping crises, the suggestion is made that new legal mechanisms have the robust potential to reduce human vulnerability locally and globally. PMID:23581656
Benatar, Solomon R
Dr. Khan has had a distinguished career in global health. He has served as a faculty member at the University of Vermont College of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health. He is currently a family medicine physician at Christiana Care Health System in Newark, Delaware, and is President of the Delaware Academy of Family Physicians. Dr. Khan has authored more than 55 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters and has conducted research and lead primary care and public health initiatives in numerous countries. Last year, Dr. Khan also coedited a book titled Megacities and Global Health sponsored by the American Public Health Association with Dr. Gregory Pappas, Deputy Health Commissioner for Washington, DC. PMID:22461688
Simmons, Rob; Khubchandani, Jagdish
Although health has improved for many people, the extent of health inequities between and within countries is growing. Meanwhile, humankind is disrupting the global climate and other life-supporting environmental systems, thereby creating serious risks for health and wellbeing, especially in vulnerable populations but ultimately for everybody. Underlying determinants of health inequity and environmental change overlap substantially; they are signs of an economic system predicated on asymmetric growth and competition, shaped by market forces that mostly disregard health and environmental consequences rather than by values of fairness and support. A shift is needed in priorities in economic development towards healthy forms of urbanisation, more efficient and renewable energy sources, and a sustainable and fairer food system. Global interconnectedness and interdependence enable the social and environmental determinants of health to be addressed in ways that will increase health equity, reduce poverty, and build societies that live within environmental limits. PMID:18994666
Friel, Sharon; Marmot, Michael; McMichael, Anthony J; Kjellstrom, Tord; Vågerö, Denny
In this introduction to the special issue, we follow the journey of global AIDS medicines into diverse health facilities in East Africa, which for decades have been subjected to neoliberal reform processes and increasing fragmentation. The introduction explores the multifaceted and multidirectional connections between global processes and their manifold articulations and experiences “on the ground.” We sketch how individuals, families,
Anita Hardon; Hansjörg Dilger
Globalization is a key context for the study of social determinants of health (SDH): broadly stated, SDH are the conditions in which people live and work, and that affect their opportunities to lead healthy lives. In the first article in this three part series, we described the origins of the series in work conducted for the Globalization Knowledge Network of the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health and in the Commission's specific concern with health equity. We identified and defended a definition of globalization that gives primacy to the drivers and effects of transnational economic integration, and addressed a number of important conceptual and methodological issues in studying globalization's effects on SDH and their distribution, emphasizing the need for transdisciplinary approaches that reflect the complexity of the topic. In this second article, we identify and describe several, often interacting clusters of pathways leading from globalization to changes in SDH that are relevant to health equity. These involve: trade liberalization; the global reorganization of production and labour markets; debt crises and economic restructuring; financial liberalization; urban settings; influences that operate by way of the physical environment; and health systems changed by the global marketplace.
Labonte, Ronald; Schrecker, Ted
The first step for quality development is identification of the quality problem. This should be followed by a set up of criteria and standards and relevant data should be collected to perform quality assessment. The quality-level is evaluated and in cases with non-satisfying results, the problem(s) should be identified and the process repeated . Identification of the best results for continuous quality improvement and professional self-assessment is part of the process . Decentralization of the whole quality development process is an aim. The Ministry of Health is politically responsible for the process and the National Board of Health is responsible for the implementation of the process at the national level. To support continuous quality development, three bills were passed in the government in 1992: 1) Free choice of hospital for the patients; 2) Appropriate local and regional distribution of specialized functions, to ensure optimal treatment of rare and complicated diseases; 3) Coordinated planning and organization of the health services. The strategy for quality development illustrated by four cases. Four projects were identified to illustrate steps in the national strategy for quality development. PROBLEM IDENTIFICATION. ESTEEM [2,3]: Using knowledge-based systems for interpretation of EMG (electromyography) in different laboratories disclosed great variations in clinical usability. The variations could be explained by different examination techniques, test planning protocols, and diagnostic criteria. It was concluded that the use of a EMG-knowledge based system disclosed great problems for standardization of procedures dependent on EMG measurements. QUALITY ASSESSMENT. Hip fracture quality project [unpublished data]: The assumption for the study was that early and active rehabilitation after hip fracture would promote the ability of the patients to cope with activities of daily living (ADL) and prevent development of complications. About 85% of the patients were expected to be able to go home on the 12th day, but this was the case for only 56% of the patients. It was concluded that the pre-set standard was not achieved and that the post-operative care was carried out in an ineffective way. QUALITY IMPROVEMENT. Laboratory quality project : Quality control assessment procedures have been implemented for years in hospital laboratories. The aim of the study was to evaluate the size of analytical bias between two local hospital laboratories using the same reference intervals. The results showed that only a few of the routine analyses meet the goals for acceptance of general reference intervals in a geographical area. The problems were reflected in the quality assessment results but, nevertheless, no action seems to have been taken to minimize the bias. It is concluded that interpretation of quality control data is a great problem. QUALITY MONITORING AND EVALUATION. National databases for health care quality : Principles for development, implementation, and use of national databases has been worked out by The National Board of Health. Clinical departments will get a tool to monitor and improve the daily working routines. National databases for clinical monitoring exist for vascular surgery, laparoscopic surgery, treatment of breast cancer, and surgery for hip fractures. PMID:8591518
Frølich, A; Bernstein, K; Vingtoft, S; Andersen, Y; De Neergaard, L; Schøiler, G
There has been increasing focus on the role of health systems in low and middle-income countries. Despite this, very little evidence exists on how best to build health systems program and research capacity in educational programs. The current experiences in building capacity in health systems in five of the most prominent global health programs at Australian universities are outlined. The strengths and weaknesses of various approaches and techniques are provided along with examples of global practice in order to provide a foundation for future discussion and thus improvements in global health systems education.
Background Global environmental health has emerged as a critical topic for environmental health researchers and practitioners. Estimates of the environmental contribution of total worldwide disease burden range from 25 to 33%. Objective We reviewed grants funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) during 2005–2007 to evaluate the costs and scientific composition of the global environmental health portfolio, with the ultimate aim of strengthening global environmental health research partnerships. Methods/Results We examined NIEHS grant research databases to identify the global environmental health portfolio. In the past 3 fiscal years (2005–2007), the NIEHS funded 57 scientific research projects in 37 countries, at an estimated cost of $30 million. Metals such as arsenic, methylmercury, and lead are the most frequently studied toxic agents, but a wide range of stressors, routes of exposure, and agents are addressed in the portfolio. Conclusions The portfolio analysis indicates that there is a firm foundation of research activities upon which additional global environmental health partnerships could be encouraged. Current data structures could be strengthened to support more automated analysis of grantee information.
Drew, Christina H.; Barnes, Martha I.; Phelps, Jerry; Van Houten, Bennett
Background The UK government committed to undertaking impact assessments of its policies on the health of populations in low and middle-income countries in its cross-government strategy “Health is Global”. To facilitate this process, the Department of Health, in collaboration with the National Heart Forum, initiated a project to pilot the use of a global health impact assessment guidance framework and toolkit for policy-makers. This paper aims to stimulate debate about the desirability and feasibility of global health impact assessments by describing and drawing lessons from the first stage of the project. Discussion Despite the attraction of being able to assess and address potential global health impacts of policies, there is a dearth of existing information and experience. A literature review was followed by discussions with policy-makers and an online survey about potential barriers, preferred support mechanisms and potential policies on which to pilot the toolkit. Although policy-makers were willing to engage in hypothetical discussions about the methodology, difficulties in identifying potential pilots suggest a wider problem in encouraging take up without legislative imperatives. This is reinforced by the findings of the survey that barriers to uptake included lack of time, resources and expertise. We identified three lessons for future efforts to mainstream global health impact assessments: 1) Identify a lead government department and champion – to some extent, this role was fulfilled by the Department of Health, however, it lacked a high-level cross-government mechanism to support implementation. 2) Ensure adequate resources and consider embedding the goals and principles of global health impact assessments into existing processes to maximise those resources. 3) Develop an effective delivery mechanism involving both state actors, and non-state actors who can ensure a “voice” for constituencies who are affected by government policies and also provide the “demand” for the assessments. Summary This paper uses the initial stages of a study on global health impact assessments to pose the wider question of incentives for policy-makers to improve global health. It highlights three lessons for successful development and implementation of global health impact assessments in relation to stewardship, resources, and delivery mechanisms.
BACKGROUND: Shortages of health workers are obstacles to utilising global health initiative (GHI) funds effectively in Africa. This paper reports and analyses two countries' health workforce responses during a period of large increases in GHI funds. METHODS: Health facility record reviews were conducted in 52 facilities in Malawi and 39 facilities in Zambia in 2006\\/07 and 2008; quarterly totals from
Ruairí Brugha; John Kadzandira; Joseph Simbaya; Patrick Dicker; Victor Mwapasa; Aisling Walsh
A discussion of the growing links between the issues of globalization, health and foreign policy. This article examines the effect this has on health, development and foreign policy communities in the UK and internationally and considers what steps the policy community must take to address the challenges and opportunities of this new relationship. PMID:16053520
Owen, John Wyn; Roberts, Olivia
EPA's Global Change Research Program is pleased to announce the publication of the Health Sector Assessment, conducted as part of the First U.S. National Assessment. The report has been published as a Special Issue of Environmental Health Perspectives. The Special Issue contains ...
The term “global health” is rapidly replacing the older terminology of “international health.” We describe the role of the World Health Organization (WHO) in both international and global health and in the transition from one to the other. We suggest that the term “global health” emerged as part of larger political and historical processes, in which WHO found its dominant role challenged and began to reposition itself within a shifting set of power alliances. Between 1948 and 1998, WHO moved from being the unquestioned leader of international health to being an organization in crisis, facing budget shortfalls and diminished status, especially given the growing influence of new and powerful players. We argue that WHO began to refashion itself as the coordinator, strategic planner, and leader of global health initiatives as a strategy of survival in response to this transformed international political context.
Brown, Theodore M.; Cueto, Marcos; Fee, Elizabeth
The pace of globalization has brought the world to the brink of a new era in international relations. While the world has outgrown traditional mechanisms for addressing global issues, it has not yet developed new forms of effective governance. This temporary void poses threats and enormous opportunities. The public health sector will play a crucial "formal" role--that is, carried out by existing bodies such as WHO and the UN. But WHO does not necessarily represent the full spectrum of views and its members necessarily work, to some degree, for separate national interests. The formal dimension must be supplemented. Globalization is not synonymous with lack of regulation. Many responsible businesses would welcome a transparent and universally applied regulatory regime to prevent a race to the lowest standards. The economic benefits of globalization may hit a glass ceiling if societies outside the global economy become progressively poorer and less healthy. The business community is recognizing that good health is essential for economic growth and social stability. Globalization may cause millions to migrate for economic opportunity. The private sector's forward-thinkers recognize the health threats of migration and are beginning to view global health promotion as a means to ensure optimal market access. PMID:17208720
In the context of reemerging universalistic approaches to health care, the objective of this article was to contribute to the discussion by highlighting the potential influence of global trade liberalization on the balance between health demand and the capacity of health systems pursuing universal health coverage (UHC) to supply adequate health care. Being identified as a defining feature of globalization affecting health, trade liberalization is analyzed as a complex and multidimensional influence on the implementation of UHC. The analysis adopts a systems-thinking approach and refers to the six building blocks of World Health Organization's current "framework for action," emphasizing their interconnectedness. While offering new opportunities to increase access to health information and care, in the absence of global governance mechanisms ensuring adequate health protection and promotion, global trade tends to have negative effects on health systems' capacity to ensure UHC, both by causing higher demand and by interfering with the interconnected functioning of health systems' building blocks. The prevention of such an impact and the effective implementation of UHC would highly benefit from a more consistent commitment and stronger leadership by the World Health Organization in protecting health in global policymaking fora in all sectors. PMID:23317639
We assess the human health and economic impacts of projected 2000–2050 changes in ozone pollution using the MIT Emissions Prediction and Policy Analysis - Health Effects (EPPA-HE) model, in combination with results from the GEOS-Chem global tropospheric chemistry model of climate and chemistry effects of projected future emissions. We use EPPA-HE to assess the human health damages (including mortality and
N E Selin; S Wu; K M Nam; J M Reilly; S Paltsev; R G Prinn; M D Webster
Community health worker programs have emerged as one of the most effective strategies to address human resources for health shortages while improving access to and quality of primary healthcare. Many developing countries have succeeded in deploying community health worker programs in recognition of the potential of community health workers to identify, refer, and in many cases treat illnesses at the household level. However, challenges in program design and sustainability are expanded when such programs are expanded at scale, particularly with regard to systems management and integration with primary health facilities. Several nongovernmental organizations provide cases of innovation on management of community health worker programs that could support a sustainable system that is capable of being expanded without being stressed in its functionality nor effectiveness--therefore, providing for stronger scalability. This paper explores community health worker programs that have been deployed at national scale, as well as scalable innovations found in successful nongovernmental organization-run community health worker programs. In exploration of strategies to ensure sustainable community health worker programs at scale, we reconcile scaling constraints and scalable innovations by mapping strengths of nongovernmental organizations' community health worker programs to the challenges faced by programs currently deployed at national scale. PMID:21598268
Liu, Anne; Sullivan, Sarah; Khan, Mohammed; Sachs, Sonia; Singh, Prabhjot
The context for nursing informatics research has changed significantly since the National Institute of Nursing Research-funded Nursing Informatics Re- search Agenda was published in 1993 and the Delphi study of nursing informatics research priorities re- ported a decade ago. The authors focus on 3 specific aspects of context—genomic health care, shifting research paradigms, and social (Web 2.0) technolo- gies—that must
Suzanne Bakken; Patricia W. Stone; Elaine L. Larson
It is now generally accepted that vitamin D deficiency is a worldwide health problem that affects not only musculoskeletal health but also a wide range of acute and chronic diseases. However, there remains cynicism about the lack of randomized controlled trials to support the association studies regarding the nonskeletal health benefits of vitamin D. This review was obtained by searching English-language studies in PubMed, MEDLINE, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials and focuses on recent challenges regarding the definition of vitamin D deficiency and how to achieve optimal serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations from dietary sources, supplements, and sun exposure. The effect of vitamin D on fetal programming epigenetics and gene regulation could potentially explain why vitamin D has been reported to have such wide-ranging health benefits throughout life. There is potentially a great upside to increasing the vitamin D status of children and adults worldwide for improving musculoskeletal health and reducing the risk of chronic illnesses, including some cancers, autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, type 2 diabetes mellitus, neurocognitive disorders, and mortality.
Hossein-nezhad, Arash; Holick, Michael F.
Abstract People and organizational issues are critical in both implementing medical informatics systems and in dealing with the altered organizations that new systems often create. The people and organizational issues area—like medical informatics itself—is a blend of many disciplines. The academic disciplines of psychology, sociology, social psychology, social anthropology, organizational behavior and organizational development, management, and cognitive sciences are rich with research with significant potential to ease the introduction and on-going use of information technology in today's complex health systems. These academic areas contribute research data and core information for better understanding of such issues as the importance of and processes for creating future direction; managing a complex change process; effective strategies for involving individuals and groups in the informatics effort; and effectively managing the altered organization. This article reviews the behavioral and business referent disciplines that can potentially contribute to improved implementations and on-going management of change in the medical informatics arena.
Lorenzi, Nancy M.; Riley, Robert T.; Blyth, Andrew J. C.; Southon, Gray; Dixon, Bradley J.
In this age of globalization, the outcome of tobacco control in one country is connected to events on the global stage. Tobacco control has become an increasingly consolidated global movement, catalyzed by the global tobacco control treaty, the World Health Organization's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) as well as the Bloomberg Initiative. This global collective effort is necessary in the face of an increasingly aggressive tobacco industry that has consolidated into a small number of very large multinational corporations, operating globally to expand their markets. Looming issues for tobacco control include the success with which the FCTC is implemented within individual nations, finding the proper role of harm reduction approaches, and using "lessons learned" from experience in the United States with tobacco product regulation. PMID:22689164
Samet, Jonathan M
With the ecological stability of the world under threat, no country can stand alone. National security should no longer be viewed in a purely military light but rather as a matter demanding cooperation between all countries on a broad range of vital issues, not least those related to health and the environment. PMID:8185752
Indonesia's decision to withhold samples of avian influenza virus A (H5N1) from the World Health Organization for much of 2007 caused a crisis in global health. The World Health Assembly produced a resolution to try to address the crisis at its May 2007 meeting. I examine how the parties to this controversy used international law in framing and negotiating the dispute. Specifically, I analyze Indonesia's use of the international legal principle of sovereignty and its appeal to rules on the protection of biological and genetic resources found in the Convention on Biological Diversity. In addition, I consider how the International Health Regulations 2005 applied to the controversy. The incident involving Indonesia's actions with virus samples illustrates both the importance and the limitations of international law in global health diplomacy. PMID:18258086
Fidler, David P
The promise of health information technology (HIT) has led to calls for a larger and better trained work-force in medical informatics. University programs in applied health and biomedical informatics have been evolving in an effort to address the need for health-care professionals to be trained in informatics. One such evolution is the American Medical Informatics Association’s (AMIA) 10x10 program. To assess current delivery and content models, participant satisfaction, and how graduates have benefited from the program in career or education advancement, all students who completed the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) offering of the AMIA 10x10 course through the end of 2006 were surveyed. We found that the 10x10 program is approaching AMIA’s goals, and that there are potential areas for content and delivery modifications. Further research in defining the optimal competencies of the medical informatics workforce and its optimal education is needed.
Feldman, Sue S.; Hersh, William
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and its predecessor organizations—collectively referred to here as AHRQ—have a productive history of funding research and development in the field of medical informatics, with grant investments since 1968 totaling $107 million. Many computerized interventions that are commonplace today, such as drug interaction alerts, had their genesis in early AHRQ initiatives.This review provides a
J Michael Fitzmaurice; Karen Adams; John M Eisenberg
The Bamako Call for Action on Research for Health stresses the importance of inter-disciplinary, inter-ministerial and inter-sectoral working. This challenges much of our current research and postgraduate research training in health, which mostly seeks to produce narrowly focused content specialists. We now need to compliment this type of research and research training, by offering alternative pathways that seek to create expertise, not only in specific narrow content areas, but also in the process and context of research, as well as in the interaction of these different facets of knowledge. Such an approach, developing 'integrative expertise', could greatly facilitate better research utilisation, helping policy makers and practitioners work through more evidence-based practice and across traditional research boundaries.
Background The "applied" nature distinguishes applied sciences from theoretical sciences. To emphasize this distinction, we begin with a general, meta-level overview of the scientific endeavor. We introduce the knowledge spectrum and four interconnected modalities of knowledge. In addition to the traditional differentiation between implicit and explicit knowledge we outline the concepts of general and individual knowledge. We connect general knowledge with the "frame problem," a fundamental issue of artificial intelligence, and individual knowledge with another important paradigm of artificial intelligence, case-based reasoning, a method of individual knowledge processing that aims at solving new problems based on the solutions to similar past problems. We outline the fundamental differences between Medical Informatics and theoretical sciences and propose that Medical Informatics research should advance individual knowledge processing (case-based reasoning) and that natural language processing research is an important step towards this goal that may have ethical implications for patient-centered health medicine. Discussion We focus on fundamental aspects of decision-making, which connect human expertise with individual knowledge processing. We continue with a knowledge spectrum perspective on biomedical knowledge and conclude that case-based reasoning is the paradigm that can advance towards personalized healthcare and that can enable the education of patients and providers. We center the discussion on formal methods of knowledge representation around the frame problem. We propose a context-dependent view on the notion of "meaning" and advocate the need for case-based reasoning research and natural language processing. In the context of memory based knowledge processing, pattern recognition, comparison and analogy-making, we conclude that while humans seem to naturally support the case-based reasoning paradigm (memory of past experiences of problem-solving and powerful case matching mechanisms), technical solutions are challenging. Finally, we discuss the major challenges for a technical solution: case record comprehensiveness, organization of information on similarity principles, development of pattern recognition and solving ethical issues. Summary Medical Informatics is an applied science that should be committed to advancing patient-centered medicine through individual knowledge processing. Case-based reasoning is the technical solution that enables a continuous individual knowledge processing and could be applied providing that challenges and ethical issues arising are addressed appropriately.
Pantazi, Stefan V; Arocha, Jose F; Moehr, Jochen R
Onion (Allium cepa L.) is botanically included in the Liliaceae and species are found across a wide range of latitudes and altitudes in Europe, Asia, N. America and Africa. World onion production has increased by at least 25% over the past 10 years with current production being around 44 million tonnes making it the second most important horticultural crop after tomatoes. Because of their storage characteristics and durability for shipping, onions have always been traded more widely than most vegetables. Onions are versatile and are often used as an ingredient in many dishes and are accepted by almost all traditions and cultures. Onion consumption is increasing significantly, particularly in the USA and this is partly because of heavy promotion that links flavour and health. Onions are rich in two chemical groups that have perceived benefits to human health. These are the flavonoids and the alk(en)yl cysteine sulphoxides (ACSOs). Two flavonoid subgroups are found in onion, the anthocyanins, which impart a red/purple colour to some varieties and flavanols such as quercetin and its derivatives responsible for the yellow and brown skins of many other varieties. The ACSOs are the flavour precursors, which, when cleaved by the enzyme alliinase, generate the characteristic odour and taste of onion. The downstream products are a complex mixture of compounds which include thiosulphinates, thiosulphonates, mono-, di- and tri-sulphides. Compounds from onion have been reported to have a range of health benefits which include anticarcinogenic properties, antiplatelet activity, antithrombotic activity, antiasthmatic and antibiotic effects. Here we review the agronomy of the onion crop, the biochemistry of the health compounds and report on recent clinical data obtained using extracts from this species. Where appropriate we have compared the data with that obtained from garlic (Allium sativum L.) for which more information is widely available. PMID:12410539
Griffiths, Gareth; Trueman, Laurence; Crowther, Timothy; Thomas, Brian; Smith, Brian
The 'global public good' (GPG) concept has gained increasing attention, in health as well as development circles. However, it has suffered in finding currency as a general tool for global resource mobilisation, and is at risk of being attached to almost anything promoting development. This overstretches and devalues the validity and usefulness of the concept. This paper first defines GPGs and describes the policy challenge that they pose. Second, it identifies two key areas, health R&D and communicable disease control, in which the GPG concept is clearly relevant and considers the extent to which it has been applied. We point out that that, while there have been many new initiatives, it is not clear that additional resources from non-traditional sources have been forthcoming. Yet achieving this is, in effect, the entire purpose of applying the GPG concept in global health. Moreover, the proliferation of disease-specific programs associated with GPG reasoning has tended to promote vertical interventions at the expense of more general health sector strengthening. Third, we examine two major global health policy initiatives, the Global Fund against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) and the bundling of long-standing international health goals in the form of Millennium Development Goals (MDG), asking how the GPG perspective has contributed to defining objectives and strategies. We conclude that both initiatives are best interpreted in the context of traditional development assistance and, one-world rhetoric aside, have little to do with the challenge posed by GPGs for health. The paper concludes by considering how the GPG concept can be more effectively used to promote global health.
Smith, Richard D; MacKellar, Landis
Research-generated information about mental disorders is crucial in order to establish the health needs in a given setting, to propose culturally apt and cost-effective individual and collective interventions, to investigate their implementation, and to explore the obstacles that prevent recommended strategies from being implemented. Yet the capacity to undertake such research in low- and middle-income countries is extremely limited. This article describes two methods that have proved successful in strengthening, or that have the potential to strengthen, mental health research capacity in low-resource settings. We identify the central challenges to be faced, review current programs offering training and mentorship, and summarize the key lessons learned. A structured approach is proposed for the career development of research staff at every career stage, to be accompanied by performance monitoring and support. A case example from the Mental Health and Poverty Project in sub-Saharan Africa illustrates how this approach can be put into practice—in particular, by focusing upon training in core transferrable research skills. (harv rev psychiatry 2012;20:13–24.)
Thornicroft, Graham; Cooper, Sara; Van Bortel, Tine; Kakuma, Ritsuko; Lund, Crick
Introduction: Childhood obesity is a major public health crisis nationally and internationally. The prevalence of childhood obesity has increased over few years. It is caused by imbalance between calorie intake and calories utilized. One or more factors (genetic, behavioral, and environmental) cause obesity in children. Physical, psychological, and social health problems are caused due to childhood obesity. Hence, effective intervention strategies are being used to prevent and control obesity in children. The purpose of this manuscript is to address various factors influencing childhood obesity, a variety of interventions and governmental actions addressing obesity and the challenges ahead for managing this epidemic. Methods: In order to collect materials for this review a detailed search of CINAHL, MEDLINE, ERIC, Academic Search Premier databases was carried out for the time period 1999-2011. Results: Some of the interventions used were family based, school based, community based, play based, and hospital based. The effective school-based interventions were seen targeting physical activity along with healthy diet education. The major challenges faced by these intervention programs are financial, along with stigmatization of obese children. Governments along with other health care organizations are taking effective actions like policy changing and environmentally safe interventions for children to improve physical activity. Conclusions: In conclusion, childhood obesity can be tackled at the population level by education, prevention and sustainable interventions related to healthy nutrition practices and physical activity promotion.
Karnik, Sameera; Kanekar, Amar
The year 2005 marks the beginning of the "International Decade for Action: Water for Life" and renewed effort to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGS) to reduce by half the proportion of the world's population without sustainable access to safe drinking water and sanitation by 2015. Currently, UNICEF and WHO estimate that 1.1 billion people lack access to improved water supplies and 2.6 billion people lack adequate sanitation. Providing safe water and basic sanitation to meet the MDGs will require substantial economic resources, sustainable technological solutions and courageous political will. We review five major challenges to providing safe water and sanitation on a global basis: (1) contamination of water in distribution systems, (2) growing water scarcity and the potential for water reuse and conservation, (3) implementing innovative low-cost sanitation systems, (4) providing sustainable water supplies and sanitation for megacities, and (5) reducing global and regional disparities in access to water and sanitation and developing financially sustainable water and sanitation services. PMID:16493899
Moe, Christine L; Rheingans, Richard D
Six measures of physiological dysregulation were derived from 11 clinically assessed biomarkers, and related to health outcomes and health behaviors for the Hawaii Personality and Health cohort (N = 470). Measures summing extreme scores at one tail of the biomarker distributions performed better than ones summing both tails, and continuous measures performed better than count scores. Health behaviors predicted men's dysregulation but not women's. Dysregulation and health behaviors predicted self-rated health for both men and women, and depressive symptoms predicted self-rated health only for women. These findings provide preliminary guidelines for constructing valid summary measures of global health status for use in health psychology. PMID:19237490
Hampson, Sarah E; Goldberg, Lewis R; Vogt, Thomas M; Hillier, Teresa A; Dubanoski, Joan P
Health promotion according to the 1986 Ottawa Charter of the first global health promotion conference "is the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. To reach a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, an individual or group must be able to identify and to realize aspirations, to satisfy needs, and to change or cope with the environment". In this commentary, I explore three powerful challenges to the spirit of the Ottawa Charter and to global health. The first challenge is the departure from the WHO definition of health; the second challenge relates to the appearance of the transhumanist/enhancement model of health which includes human performance enhancement beyond species-typical boundaries as part of the concept of health. The third challenge consists of the limited involvement and understanding of disabled people with their different models of 'disability/impairment' (medical, social, transhumanist/enhancement) in the discourse of global health and health promotion. Not dealing with these challenges impairs the ability of health promotion to deal with global health problems, the 'health' needs of marginalized groups--in particular, disabled people--and the Millennium Development Goals. PMID:17120882
Demographers are slowly bringing the migration of women to the forefront as women become the majority of migrants worldwide. Migration can provide new opportunities for women on their own or jointly with their spouses to improve their lives, escape oppressive social relations, and support children and other family members who are left behind. It also can expose women to new vulnerabilities resulting from their precarious legal status, abusive working conditions, and health risks.(1) Migrant women are triply disadvantaged by race/ethnicity, their status as nonnationals, and gender inequalities.(2.) PMID:24416688
de Leon Siantz, Mary Lou
The world is facing an unprecedented global economic crisis, with many countries needing to reconsider their level of health care spending. This paper explores the many consequences of the global economic turndown on Pakistan's health, including reduced government and donor spending and increased poverty with the consequent diversion of funds away from health. Nevertheless, these challenges may provide opportunities not only to mitigate the adverse effects of the economic crisis but also to institute some much-needed reforms that may not receive political support during more affluent times. Our suggestions focus on setting priorities based on the national disease burden, prioritizing prevention interventions, demanding results, curbing corruption, experimenting with innovative funding mechanisms, advocating for increased funding by presenting health spending as an investment rather than an expense and by selected recourse to civil society interventions and philanthropy to bridge the gap between available and needed resources. PMID:22574485
Jooma, R; Khan, A; Khan, A A
The sequencing of the human genome, completed at the dawn of the twenty-first century, allows researchers to integrate new data on genetic risk factors with demographic and lifestyle data collected via modern communication technologies. The technical prerequisites now exist for merging these cascades of molecular genetic information, not only to national health registers, but also to epidemiology and clinical data. Long-term storage of biological materials and data is a critical component of any epidemiological or clinical study. In designing Biobanks, informatics plays a vital role for the handling of samples and data in a timely fashion. Biobank Informatics contains important elements concerning definition, structure, and standardization of information that has been gathered from a multitude of sources from population-based registries, biobanks, patient records, and from large-scale molecular measurements. PMID:20949402
In this paper, we argue that the dominant role played by governments of the developed countries in global health policies is a critical but often an ignored factor in contributing to the lack of progress in global health. The solution to this challenge lies in efforts to 'democratise' global decision making and to argue for a greater say of the poor globally in policies affecting them. Although there are potentially many ways to achieve this, the paper proposes 'communitarian claims' as one way to have the voice of people globally involved and to make decisions about how best to allocate resources globally. It is argued that such claims can be advanced at a practical level through 'citizens' juries' as evident from the experience in Australia. That experience and with increasing evidence from elsewhere, there is a strong indication from communities of desires for a very different set of values to underpin healthcare than the Australian and other governments, in partnership with global institutions, deliver. PMID:21674620
Govender, Veloshnee; Mooney, Gavin
Although currently there are only a limited number of genomic technologies that are applicable to health care in the developing countries, this is unlikely to be the case in the near future. If, however, the full potential of genomics for health care is to be fulfilled, there will have to be a complete change of emphasis in education and research in the richer countries toward a more global view of disease and its consequences. PMID:14576421
Weatherall, David J
Increased international support for both research into new vaccines and their deployment in developing countries has been evident over the past decade. In particular, the GAVI Alliance has had a major impact in increasing uptake of the six common infant vaccines as well as those against hepatitis B and yellow fever. It further aims to introduce pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines in the near future and several others, including those against human papillomavirus, meningococcal disease, rubella and typhoid not long after that. In addition, there is advanced research into vaccines against malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. By 2030, we may have about 20 vaccines that need to be used in the developing world. Finding the requisite funds to achieve this will pose a major problem. A second and urgent question is how to complete the job of global polio eradication. The new strategic plan calls for completion by 2013, but both pre-eradication and post-eradication challenges remain. Vaccines will eventually become available beyond the field of infectious diseases. Much interesting work is being done in both autoimmunity and cancer. Cutting across disease groupings, there are issues in methods of delivery and new adjuvant formulations.
Nossal, G. J. V.
This article describes the Australian Informatics Competition (AIC), a non-programming competition aimed at identifying students with potential in programming and algorithmic design. It is the first step in identifying students to represent Australia at the International Olympiad in Informatics. The main aim of the AIC is to increase awareness of…
Background: In 2007, our healthcare system established a clinical fellowship program in Pathology Informatics. In 2010 a core didactic course was implemented to supplement the fellowship research and operational rotations. In 2011, the course was enhanced by a formal, structured core curriculum and reading list. We present and discuss our rationale and development process for the Core Curriculum and the role it plays in our Pathology Informatics Fellowship Training Program. Materials and Methods: The Core Curriculum for Pathology Informatics was developed, and is maintained, through the combined efforts of our Pathology Informatics Fellows and Faculty. The curriculum was created with a three-tiered structure, consisting of divisions, topics, and subtopics. Primary (required) and suggested readings were selected for each subtopic in the curriculum and incorporated into a curated reading list, which is reviewed and maintained on a regular basis. Results: Our Core Curriculum is composed of four major divisions, 22 topics, and 92 subtopics that cover the wide breadth of Pathology Informatics. The four major divisions include: (1) Information Fundamentals, (2) Information Systems, (3) Workflow and Process, and (4) Governance and Management. A detailed, comprehensive reading list for the curriculum is presented in the Appendix to the manuscript and contains 570 total readings (current as of March 2012). Discussion: The adoption of a formal, core curriculum in a Pathology Informatics fellowship has significant impacts on both fellowship training and the general field of Pathology Informatics itself. For a fellowship, a core curriculum defines a basic, common scope of knowledge that the fellowship expects all of its graduates will know, while at the same time enhancing and broadening the traditional fellowship experience of research and operational rotations. For the field of Pathology Informatics itself, a core curriculum defines to the outside world, including departments, companies, and health systems considering hiring a pathology informatician, the core knowledge set expected of a person trained in the field and, more fundamentally, it helps to define the scope of the field within Pathology and healthcare in general.
McClintock, David S.; Levy, Bruce P.; Lane, William J.; Lee, Roy E.; Baron, Jason M.; Klepeis, Veronica E.; Onozato, Maristela L.; Kim, JiYeon; Dighe, Anand S.; Beckwith, Bruce A.; Kuo, Frank; Black-Schaffer, Stephen; Gilbertson, John R.
The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has spurred unprecedented progress in saving lives from AIDS, while also improving a broad range of health outcomes by strengthening country platforms for the delivery of basic health services. Now, a new endpoint is in sight--an AIDS-free generation--together with the opportunity to change the trajectory of global health through the investments made and lessons learned in doing this work. Less than a decade ago, many experts counseled against scaling up antiretroviral treatment in the developing world. They feared that patients would be unable to adhere to their regimens, that resistant strains of the virus would evolve and prevail, and that the need to sustain daily treatment for millions of people in poor settings would overwhelm fragile health systems. Today, over 6.6 million men, women, and children are on treatment, and incidence is dropping in many of the hardest-hit countries. By adopting a targeted approach to address one of the most complex global health issues in modern history, and then taking it to scale with urgency and commitment, PEPFAR has both forged new models and challenged the conventional wisdom on what is possible. In this article, PEPFAR and its partners are examined through new and evolving models of country ownership and shared responsibility that hold promise of transforming the future landscape of global health. PMID:22797738
Goosby, Eric; Von Zinkernagel, Deborah; Holmes, Charles; Haroz, David; Walsh, Thomas
Global health and international health are prominent concepts within development issues today. Health is at the heart of many of the Millennium Development Goals, and the idea of a human right to health and health care has taken more hold in the forefronts of our minds. In acknowledgement of the globalised and interdependent society in which we live, this reflective piece uses personal experiences of anthropology and travel throughout the author's medical education to illustrate the pressing need for a better understanding between health workers and local populations. Experiences in Ecuador, Peru, India and Nepal, highlight the plurality of medicine. They show how medical education in the UK forms only one part of medical knowledge, and in particular how clinical practice requires the appreciation of a wider context. Within a multi-cultural society, it is essential that medical students learn new skills for the future. Teaching Anthropology and Sociology within the curriculum in the UK can educate students about how knowledge is created within a culture and to appreciate the diversity between cultures. Consideration of patients' backgrounds and beliefs allows health workers to develop relationships with the local population, which can be of invaluable use in making global health equality a reality. PMID:20541139
Despite a flourishing biomedical and global health industry too few of Washington state's precollege students are aware of this growing sector and emerging ideas on bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses. Against the backdrop of numerous reports regarding declining precollege student interest in science, a precollege program was envisioned at Seattle Biomedical Research Institute (as of 2010, Seattle BioMed) to increase youth engagement in biomedical research and global health, increase community interest in infectious diseases and mobilize a future biomedical workforce. Since 2005, 169 rising high school juniors have participated in the BioQuest Academy precollege immersion program at Seattle BioMed. Assembling in groups of 12, students conduct laboratory experiments (e.g., anopheline mosquito dissection, gene expression informed tuberculosis drug design and optimizing HIV immunization strategies) related to global health alongside practicing scientific mentors, all within the footprint the institute. Laudable short-term impacts of the program include positive influences on student interest in global health (as seen in the students' subsequent school projects and their participation in Seattle BioMed community events), biomedical careers and graduate school (e.g., 16.9% of teens departing 2008-2009 Academy report revised goals of attaining a doctorate rather than a baccalaureate diploma). Long-term, 97% of alumni (2005-2008) are attending postsecondary schools throughout North America; eight graduates have already published scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals and/or presented their scientific data at national and international meetings, and 26 have been retained by Seattle BioMed researchers as compensated technicians and interns. Providing precollege students with structured access to practicing scientists and authentic research environments within the context of advancing global health has been a robust means of both building a future pool of talented leaders and engaged citizenry and increasing the visibility of health disparities within the community. PMID:21072198
Gervassi, Ana L; Collins, Laura J; Britschgi, Theresa B
The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) demonstrates the international political will invested in combating the tobacco pandemic and a newfound prominence for tobacco control within the global health agenda. However, major difficulties exist in managing conflicts with foreign and trade policy priorities, and significant obstacles confront efforts to create synergies with development policy and avoid tensions with other health priorities. This paper uses the concept of policy coherence to explore congruence and inconsistencies in objectives, policy, and practice between tobacco control and trade, development and global health priorities. Following the inability of the FCTC negotiations to satisfactorily address the relationship between trade and health, several disputes highlight the challenges posed to tobacco control policies by multilateral and bilateral agreements. While the work of the World Bank has demonstrated the potential contribution of tobacco control to development, the absence of non-communicable diseases from the Millennium Development Goals has limited scope to offer developing countries support for FCTC implementation. Even within international health, tobacco control priorities may be hard to reconcile with other agendas. The paper concludes by discussing the extent to which tobacco control has been pursued via a model of governance very deliberately different from those used in other health issues, in what can be termed 'tobacco exceptionalism'. The analysis developed here suggests that non-communicable disease (NCD) policies, global health, development and tobacco control would have much to gain from re-examining this presumption of difference. PMID:22345267
Background Most analyses of global health use country as a unit of observation, not least because countries are intrinsic to health services and to many international organisations. However, this can mask geographical influences on population health, which do not respect political boundaries. Methods A global anational database was constructed with one degree cells of latitude and longitude, and used to calculate densities for population and key health indicators. These data were aggregated into 240 15° ansectors, 171 of which were populated. Differences in ansector rank orders between population density and health outcomes (infant, maternal and HIV-related deaths and income) were calculated and mapped as quintiles. Findings Individual ansectors contained parts of 1–21 countries. Mapping by ansector showed that the four outcomes analysed were strongly geographically correlated. Sub-Saharan Africa was consistently disadvantaged in terms of health outcomes, while the Indian sub-continent was at an advantage in terms of HIV mortality, despite poverty. Interpretation Although in most cases it makes sense to analyse health on a national basis, these findings highlight the often unquestioned assumptions involved in doing so. Even if global patterns of health do not turn out so differently when analysed anationally, some major effects on health, such as climate change, are not nationally based, and should not necessarily be nationally analysed. Progress towards Millennium Development Goals must be evaluated on a population basis, rather than by counting countries achieving targets. Data files are available in Excel format and attached as separate files to this paper (see Supplementary files under Reading Tools online).
Acute kidney injury (AKI) is increasingly prevalent in developing and developed countries and is associated with severe morbidity and mortality. Most etiologies of AKI can be prevented by interventions at the individual, community, regional and in-hospital levels. Effective measures must include community-wide efforts to increase an awareness of the devastating effects of AKI and provide guidance on preventive strategies, as well as early recognition and management. Efforts should be focused on minimizing causes of AKI, increasing awareness of the importance of serial measurements of serum creatinine in high risk patients, and documenting urine volume in acutely ill people to achieve early diagnosis; there is as yet no definitive role for alternative biomarkers. Protocols need to be developed to systematically manage prerenal conditions and specific infections. More accurate data about the true incidence and clinical impact of AKI will help to raise the importance of the disease in the community, increase awareness of AKI by governments, the public, general and family physicians and other health care professionals to help prevent the disease. Prevention is the key to avoid the heavy burden of mortality and morbidity associated with AKI.
Kam Tao Li, Philip; Burdmann, Emmanuel A; Mehta, Ravindra L
Automation and emerging information technologies are being adopted by cytology laboratories to augment Pap test screening and improve diagnostic accuracy. As a result, informatics, the application of computers and information systems to information management, has become essential for the successful operation of the cytopathology laboratory. This review describes how laboratory information management systems can be used to achieve an automated and seamless workflow process. The utilization of software, electronic databases and spreadsheets to perform necessary quality control measures are discussed, as well as a Lean production system and Six Sigma approach, to reduce errors in the cytopathology laboratory.
Hornish, Maryanne; Goulart, Robert A.
Looking across the last two decades, the progress that the global community has made in health is impressive. Compared to 1990, this year, more than 4 million more children will live past their fifth birthday, and average life expectancy has increased by ...
Posted: 06/23/2014 Posted: 06/23/2014 Cancer Detection, Diagnosis, and Treatment Technologies for Global Health What is the definition of a low and middle income country?For this RFA, low and middle income countries are defined as indicated by the World
A new set of 11 global health studies calls attention to the burden of tobacco-related inequalities in low- and middle-income countries and finds that socioeconomic inequalities are associated with increased tobacco use, second-hand smoke exposure and tobacco-related cancer and diseases among disadvantaged populations in Asia, Latin America and Africa.
The world economy is entering an era of multiple crises, involving finance, food security and global environmental change. This article assesses the implications for global public health, describes the contours of post-2007 crises in food security and finance, and then briefly indicates the probable health impacts. There follows a discussion of the crisis of climate change, one that will unfold over a longer time frame but with manifestations that may already be upon us. The article then discusses the political economy of responses to these crises, noting the formidable obstacles that exist to equitable resolution. The article concludes by noting the threat that such crises present to recent progress in global health, arguing that global health researchers and practitioners must become more familiar with the relevant social processes, and that proposed solutions that neglect the continuing importance of the nation-state are misdirected. PMID:22657093
The rate commitment to ISO 214 standard among the persian abstracts of approved research projects at school of health management and medical informatics, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
Introduction: Commitment to abstracting standards has a very significant role in information retrieval. The present research aimed to evaluate the rate of Commitment to ISO 214 Standard among the Persian abstracts of approved research projects at School of Health Management and Medical Informatics, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran. Materials and Methods: This descriptive study used a researcher-made checklist to collect data, which was then analyzed through content analysis. The studied population consisted of 227 approved research projects in the School of Health Management and Medical Informatics, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences during 2001-2010. The validity of the checklist was measured by face and content validity. Data was collected through direct observations. Statistical analyzes including descriptive (frequency distribution and percent) and inferential statistics (Chi-square test) were performed in SPSS-16. Results: The highest and lowest commitment rates to ISO 214 standard were in using third person pronouns (100%) and using active verbs (34/4%), respectively. In addition, the highest commitment rates to ISO 214 standard (100%) related to mentioning third person pronouns, starting the abstract with a sentence to explain the subject of the research, abstract placement, and including keyword in 2009. On the other hand, during 2001-2003, the lowest commitment rate was observed in reporting research findings (16/7%). Moreover, various educational groups differed significantly only in commitment to study goals, providing research findings, and abstaining from using abbreviations, signs, and acronyms. Furthermore, educational level of the corresponding author was significantly related with extracting the keywords from the text. Other factors of ISO 214 standard did not have significant relations with the educational level of the corresponding author. Conclusions: In general, a desirable rate of commitment to ISO 214 standard was observed among the Persian abstracts of approved research projects at the School of Health Management and Medical Informatics of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. However, commitment rates differed between years. In addition, commitment to ISO 214 standard was not significantly related with educational group and level.
Papi, Ahmad; Khalaji, Davoud; Rizi, Hasan Ashrafi; Shabani, Ahmad; Hassanzadeh, Akbar
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Most studies on global health inequality consider unequal health care and socio-economic conditions but neglect inequality in the production of health knowledge relevant to addressing disease burden. We demonstrate this inequality and identify likely causes. Using disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 111 prominent medical conditions, assessed globally and nationally by the World Health Organization, we linked DALYs with MEDLINE articles for each condition to assess the influence of DALY-based global disease burden, compared to the global market for treatment, on the production of relevant MEDLINE articles, systematic reviews, clinical trials and research using animal models vs. humans. We then explored how DALYs, wealth, and the production of research within countries correlate with this global pattern. We show that global DALYs for each condition had a small, significant negative relationship with the production of each type of MEDLINE articles for that condition. Local processes of health research appear to be behind this. Clinical trials and animal studies but not systematic reviews produced within countries were strongly guided by local DALYs. More and less developed countries had very different disease profiles and rich countries publish much more than poor countries. Accordingly, conditions common to developed countries garnered more clinical research than those common to less developed countries. Many of the health needs in less developed countries do not attract attention among developed country researchers who produce the vast majority of global health knowledge—including clinical trials—in response to their own local needs. This raises concern about the amount of knowledge relevant to poor populations deficient in their own research infrastructure. We recommend measures to address this critical dimension of global health inequality.
Evans, James A.; Shim, Jae-Mahn; Ioannidis, John P. A.
The global burden of neuropsychiatry diseases and related mental health conditions is enormous, underappreciated and under resourced, particularly in the developing nations. The absence of adequate and quality mental health infrastructure and workforce is increasingly recognized. The ethical implications of inequalities in mental health for people and nations are profound and must be addressed in efforts to fulfil key bioethics principles of medicine and public health: respect for individuals, justice, beneficence, and non-malfeasance. Stigma and discrimination against people living with mental disorders affects their education, employment, access to care and hampers their capacity to contribute to society. Mental health well-being is closely associated to several Millennium Development Goals and economic development sectors including education, labour force participation, and productivity. Limited access to mental health care increases patient and family suffering. Unmet mental health needs have a negative effect on poverty reduction initiatives and economic development. Untreated mental conditions contribute to economic loss because they increase school and work absenteeism and dropout rates, healthcare expenditure, and unemployment. Addressing unmet mental health needs will require development of better mental health infrastructure and workforce and overall integration of mental and physical health services with primary care, especially in the developing nations.
NGUI, EMMANUEL M.; KHASAKHALA, LINCOLN; NDETEI, DAVID; ROBERTS, LAURA WEISS
Regulatory science plays a vital role in protecting and promoting global public health by providing the scientific basis for ensuring that food and medical products are safe, properly labeled, and effective. Regulatory science research was first developed for the determination of product safety in the early part of the 20th Century, and continues to support innovation of the processes needed for regulatory policy decisions. Historically, public health laws and regulations were enacted following public health tragedies, and often the research tools and techniques required to execute these laws lagged behind the public health needs. Throughout history, similar public health problems relating to food and pharmaceutical products have occurred in countries around the world, and have usually led to the development of equivalent solutions. For example, most countries require a demonstration of pharmaceutical safety and efficacy prior to marketing these products using approaches that are similar to those initiated in the United States. The globalization of food and medical products has created a shift in regulatory compliance such that gaps in food and medical product safety can generate international problems. Improvements in regulatory research can advance the regulatory paradigm toward a more preventative, proactive framework. These improvements will advance at a greater pace with international collaboration by providing additional resources and new perspectives for approaching and anticipating public health problems. The following is a review of how past public health disasters have shaped the current regulatory landscape, and where innovation can facilitate the shift from reactive policies to proactive policies. PMID:22871603
Patel, Meghal; Miller, Margaret Ann
The reduction of health inequities is an ethical imperative, according to the WHO Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH). Drawing on detailed multidisciplinary evidence assembled by the Globalization Knowledge Network that supported the CSDH, we define globalisation in mainly economic terms. We consider and reject the presumption that globalisation will yield health benefits as a result of its contribution to rapid economic growth and associated reductions in poverty. Expanding on this point, we describe four disequalising dynamics by which contemporary globalisation causes divergence: the global reorganisation of production and emergence of a global labour-market; the increasing importance of binding trade agreements and processes to resolve disputes; the rapidly increasing mobility of financial capital; and the persistence of debt crises in developing countries. Generic policies designed to reduce health inequities are described with reference to the three Rs of redistribution, regulation, and rights. We conclude with an examination of the interconnected intellectual and institutional challenges to reduction of health inequities that are created by contemporary globalisation. PMID:18994665
Schrecker, Ted; Labonté, Ronald; De Vogli, Roberto
Over the past decade, Vietnam has successfully responded to global health security (GHS) challenges, including domestic elimination of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and rapid public health responses to human infections with influenza A(H5N1) virus. However, new threats such as Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and influenza A(H7N9) present continued challenges, reinforcing the need to improve the global capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to public health threats. In June 2012, Vietnam, along with many other nations, obtained a 2-year extension for meeting core surveillance and response requirements of the 2005 International Health Regulations (IHR). During March-September 2013, CDC and the Vietnamese Ministry of Health (MoH) collaborated on a GHS demonstration project to improve public health emergency detection and response capacity. The project aimed to demonstrate, in a short period, that enhancements to Vietnam's health system in surveillance and early detection of and response to diseases and outbreaks could contribute to meeting the IHR core capacities, consistent with the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases. Work focused on enhancements to three interrelated priority areas and included achievements in 1) establishing an emergency operations center (EOC) at the General Department of Preventive Medicine with training of personnel for public health emergency management; 2) improving the nationwide laboratory system, including enhanced testing capability for several priority pathogens (i.e., those in Vietnam most likely to contribute to public health emergencies of international concern); and 3) creating an emergency response information systems platform, including a demonstration of real-time reporting capability. Lessons learned included awareness that integrated functions within the health system for GHS require careful planning, stakeholder buy-in, and intradepartmental and interdepartmental coordination and communication. PMID:24476979
Tran, Phu Dac; Vu, Long Ngoc; Nguyen, Hien Tran; Phan, Lan Trong; Lowe, Wayne; McConnell, Michelle S; Iademarco, Michael F; Partridge, Jeffrey M; Kile, James C; Do, Trang; Nadol, Patrick J; Bui, Hien; Vu, Diep; Bond, Kyle; Nelson, David B; Anderson, Lauren; Hunt, Kenneth V; Smith, Nicole; Giannone, Paul; Klena, John; Beauvais, Denise; Becknell, Kristi; Tappero, Jordan W; Dowell, Scott F; Rzeszotarski, Peter; Chu, May; Kinkade, Carl
Unprecedented attention is focused on global health, with a four-fold increase in development assistance in the last 15 years and the scope of global health expanding beyond infectious disease to include chronic disease and health systems strengthening. As the global impact of health is more widely understood, it has become a crucial element of international relations, economic development, and foreign
Leslie A. Curry; Minh A. Luong; Harlan M. Krumholz; John Gaddis; Paul Kennedy; Stephen Rulisa; Lauren Taylor; Elizabeth H. Bradley
Background Interest and participation in global health activities among U.S. medical trainees has increased sharply in recent decades, yet the global health activities of physicians who have completed residency training remain understudied. Our objectives were to assess associations between individual characteristics and patterns of post-residency global health activities across the domains of health policy, education, and research. Methods Cross-sectional, mixed methods national survey of 521 physicians with formal training in clinical and health services research and policy leadership. Main measures were post-residency global health activity and characteristics of this activity (location, funding, products, and perceived synergy with domestic activities). Results Most respondents (73%) hold faculty appointments across 84 U.S. medical schools and a strong plurality (46%) are trained in internal medicine. Nearly half of all respondents (44%) reported some global health activity after residency; however, the majority of this group (73%) reported spending ?10% of professional time on global health in the past year. Among those active in global health, the majority (78%) reported receiving some funding for their global health activities, and most (83%) reported at least one scholarly, educational, or other product resulting from this work. Many respondents perceived synergies between domestic and global health activities, with 85% agreeing with the statement that their global health activities had enhanced the quality of their domestic work and increased their level of involvement with vulnerable populations, health policy advocacy, or research on the social determinants of health. Despite these perceived synergies, qualitative data from in-depth interviews revealed personal and institutional barriers to sustained global health involvement, including work-family balance and a lack of specific avenues for career development in global health. Conclusions Post-residency global health activity is common in this diverse, multi-specialty group of physicians. Although those with global health experience describe synergies with their domestic work, the lack of established career development pathways may limit the benefits of this synergy for individuals and their institutions.
Health systems played a key role in the dramatic rise in global life expectancy that occurred during the 20th century, and have continued to contribute enormously to the improvement of the health of most of the world's population. The health workforce is the backbone of each health system, the lubricant that facilitates the smooth implementation of health action for sustainable socio-economic development. It has been proved beyond reasonable doubt that the density of the health workforce is directly correlated with positive health outcomes. In other words, health workers save lives and improve health. About 59 million people make up the health workforce of paid full-time health workers world-wide. However, enormous gaps remain between the potential of health systems and their actual performance, and there are far too many inequities in the distribution of health workers between countries and within countries. The Americas (mainly USA and Canada) are home to 14% of the world's population, bear only 10% of the world's disease burden, have 37% of the global health workforce and spend about 50% of the world's financial resources for health. Conversely, sub-Saharan Africa, with about 11% of the world's population bears over 24% of the global disease burden, is home to only 3% of the global health workforce, and spends less than 1% of the world's financial resources on health. In most developing countries, the health workforce is concentrated in the major towns and cities, while rural areas can only boast of about 23% and 38% of the country's doctors and nurses respectively. The imbalances exist not only in the total numbers and geographical distribution of health workers, but also in the skills mix of available health workers. WHO estimates that 57 countries world wide have a critical shortage of health workers, equivalent to a global deficit of about 2.4 million doctors, nurses and midwives. Thirty six of these countries are in sub- Saharan Africa. They would need to increase their health workforce by about 140% to achieve enough coverage for essential health interventions to make a positive difference in the health and life expectancy of their populations. The extent causes and consequences of the health workforce crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the various factors that influence and are related to it are well known and described. Although there is no "magic bullet" solution to the problem, there are several documented, tested and tried best practices from various countries. The global health workforce crisis can be tackled if there is global responsibility, political will, financial commitment and public-private partnership for country-led and country-specific interventions that seek solutions beyond the health sector. Only when enough health workers can be trained, sustained and retained in sub-Saharan African countries will there be meaningful socio-economic development and the faintest hope of attaining the Millennium Development Goals in the sub-continent. PMID:17617671
Anyangwe, Stella C E; Mtonga, Chipayeni
Health systems played a key role in the dramatic rise in global life expectancy that occurred during the 20th century, and have continued to contribute enormously to the improvement of the health of most of the world’s population. The health workforce is the backbone of each health system, the lubricant that facilitates the smooth implementation of health action for sustainable socio-economic development. It has been proved beyond reasonable doubt that the density of the health workforce is directly correlated with positive health outcomes. In other words, health workers save lives and improve health. About 59 million people make up the health workforce of paid full-time health workers world-wide. However, enormous gaps remain between the potential of health systems and their actual performance, and there are far too many inequities in the distribution of health workers between countries and within countries. The Americas (mainly USA and Canada) are home to 14% of the world’s population, bear only 10% of the world’s disease burden, have 37% of the global health workforce and spend about 50% of the world’s financial resources for health. Conversely, sub-Saharan Africa, with about 11% of the world’s population bears over 24% of the global disease burden, is home to only 3% of the global health workforce, and spends less than 1% of the world’s financial resources on health. In most developing countries, the health workforce is concentrated in the major towns and cities, while rural areas can only boast of about 23% and 38% of the country’s doctors and nurses respectively. The imbalances exist not only in the total numbers and geographical distribution of health workers, but also in the skills mix of available health workers. WHO estimates that 57 countries world wide have a critical shortage of health workers, equivalent to a global deficit of about 2.4 million doctors, nurses and midwives. Thirty six of these countries are in sub-Saharan Africa. They would need to increase their health workforce by about 140% to achieve enough coverage for essential health interventions to make a positive difference in the health and life expectancy of their populations. The extent causes and consequences of the health workforce crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa, and the various factors that influence and are related to it are well known and described. Although there is no “magic bullet” solution to the problem, there are several documented, tested and tried best practices from various countries. The global health workforce crisis can be tackled if there is global responsibility, political will, financial commitment and public-private partnership for country-led and country-specific interventions that seek solutions beyond the health sector. Only when enough health workers can be trained, sustained and retained in sub-Saharan African countries will there be meaningful socio-economic development and the faintest hope of attaining the Millennium Development Goals in the sub-continent.
Anyangwe, Stella C. E.; Mtonga, Chipayeni
Background Two phenomena have become increasingly visible over the past decade: the significant global burden of disease arising from mental illness and the rapid acceleration of mobile phone usage in poorer countries. Mental ill-health accounts for a significant proportion of global disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) and years lived with disability (YLDs), especially in poorer countries where a number of factors combine to exacerbate issues of undertreatment. Yet poorer countries have also witnessed significant investments in, and dramatic expansions of, mobile coverage and usage over the past decade. Debate The conjunction of high levels of mental illness and high levels of mobile phone usage in poorer countries highlights the potential for “mH2” interventions – i.e. mHealth (mobile technology-based) mental health interventions - to tackle global mental health challenges. However, global mental health movements and initiatives have yet to engage fully with this potential, partly because of scepticism towards technological solutions in general and partly because existing mH2 projects in mental health have often taken place in a fragmented, narrowly-focused, and small-scale manner. We argue for a deeper and more sustained engagement with mobile phone technology in the global mental health context, and outline the possible shape of an integrated mH2 platform for the diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of mental health. Summary Existing and developing mH2 technologies represent an underutilised resource in global mental health. If development, evaluation, and implementation challenges are overcome, an integrated mH2 platform would make significant contributions to mental healthcare in multiple settings and contexts.
Focusing mainly on the United States and Latin America, we aimed to identify the constructions of social reality held by the major stakeholders participating in policy debates about global trade, public health, and health services. In a multi-method, qualitative design, we used three sources of data: research and archival literature, 1980-2004; interviews with key informants who represented major organizations participating in these debates, 2002-2004; and organizational reports, 1980-2004. We targeted several types of organizations: government agencies, international financial institutions (IFIs) and trade organizations, international health organizations, multinational corporations, and advocacy groups. Many governments in Latin America define health as a right and health services as a public good. Thus, the government bears responsibility for that right. In contrast, the US government's philosophy of free trade and promoting a market economy assumes that by expanding the private sector, improved economic conditions will improve overall health with a minimum government provision of health care. US government agencies also view promotion of global health as a means to serve US interests. IFIs have emphasized reforms that include reduction and privatization of public sector services. International health organizations have tended to adopt the policy perspectives of IFIs and trade organizations. Advocacy groups have emphasized the deleterious effects of international trade agreements on public health and health services. Organizational stakeholders hold widely divergent constructions of reality regarding trade, public health, and health services. Social constructions concerning trade and health reflect broad ideologies concerning the impacts of market processes. Such constructions manifest features of "creed," regarding the role of the market in advancing human purposes and meeting human needs. Differences in constructions of trade and health constrain policies to address the profound changes generated by global trade. PMID:15955394
Waitzkin, Howard; Jasso-Aguilar, Rebeca; Landwehr, Angela; Mountain, Carolyn
Human activities are placing enormous pressures on the biosphere. The introduction of new chemicals and the increasing ambient levels of existing chemicals have resulted in atmospheric degradation. This paper reviews some of the adverse effects of stratospheric ozone depletion and global warming. Because the atmospheric effects of ozone depletion are fairly well characterized, quantitative risk estimates have been developed. However, because the atmospheric effects of global warming are less understood, public health problems that could be intensified by climate change are assessed qualitatively. The interactive effects of these two phenomena are also discussed.
Significant efforts have been directed toward addressing the financial needs of the developing world for assistance with public health and related development problems. Both public and private organizations have made considerable economic contributions to assist with immediate and long term health challenges, and there is growing international support for programs of national debit relief. Still, there is a need for additional resources to combat international health problems, which go beyond largesse. This paper calls for the creation of a legally rooted, global tax as a mechanism for consistent long term funding. Specifically, the paper proposes engagement of the World Trade Organization as a vehicle to sponsor a global tax on multinational corporations who have benefited most from the international trading scheme. PMID:17639846
Blum, J D
Although globalization has created ample opportunities and spaces to share experiences and information, the diffusion of ideas, especially in global health, is primarily influenced by the unequal distribution of economic, political and scientific powers around the world. These ideas in global health are generally rooted in High-Income Countries (HICs), and then reach Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs). We argue that acknowledging and addressing this invisible trend would contribute to a greater degree of open discussions in global health. This is expected to favor innovative, alternative, and culturally sound solutions for persistent health problems and reducing inequities. PMID:24987715
Robert, Emilie; Hajizadeh, Mohammad; El-Bialy, Rowan; Bidisha, Sayema Haque
Although globalization has created ample opportunities and spaces to share experiences and information, the diffusion of ideas, especially in global health, is primarily influenced by the unequal distribution of economic, political and scientific powers around the world. These ideas in global health are generally rooted in High-Income Countries (HICs), and then reach Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs). We argue that acknowledging and addressing this invisible trend would contribute to a greater degree of open discussions in global health. This is expected to favor innovative, alternative, and culturally sound solutions for persistent health problems and reducing inequities.
Robert, Emilie; Hajizadeh, Mohammad; El-Bialy, Rowan; Bidisha, Sayema Haque
Background In the last few decades, health systems research (HSR) has garnered much attention with a rapid increase in the related literature. This study aims to review and evaluate the global progress in HSR and assess the current quantitative trends. Methods Based on data from the Web of Science database, scientometric methods and knowledge visualization techniques were applied to evaluate global scientific production and develop trends of HSR from 1900 to 2012. Results HSR has increased rapidly over the past 20 years. Currently, there are 28,787 research articles published in 3,674 journals that are listed in 140 Web of Science subject categories. The research in this field has mainly focused on public, environmental and occupational health (6,178, 21.46%), health care sciences and services (5,840, 20.29%), and general and internal medicine (3,783, 13.14%). The top 10 journals had published 2,969 (10.31%) articles and received 5,229 local citations and 40,271 global citations. The top 20 authors together contributed 628 papers, which accounted for a 2.18% share in the cumulative worldwide publications. The most productive author was McKee, from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, with 48 articles. In addition, USA and American institutions ranked the first in health system research productivity, with high citation times, followed by the UK and Canada. Conclusions HSR is an interdisciplinary area. Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development countries showed they are the leading nations in HSR. Meanwhile, American and Canadian institutions and the World Health Organization play a dominant role in the production, collaboration, and citation of high quality articles. Moreover, health policy and analysis research, health systems and sub-systems research, healthcare and services research, health, epidemiology and economics of communicable and non-communicable diseases, primary care research, health economics and health costs, and pharmacy of hospital have been identified as the mainstream topics in HSR fields. These findings will provide evidence of the current status and trends in HSR all over the world, as well as clues to the impact of this popular topic; thus, helping scientific researchers and policy makers understand the panorama of HSR and predict the dynamic directions of research.
Recent studies have shown evidence of a direct and positive causal link between the number of health workers and health outcomes. Several studies have identified an adequate health workforce as one of the key ingredients to achieving improved health outcomes. Global health initiatives are faced with human resources issues as a major, system-wide constraint. This article explores how the Global
Sigrid Dräger; Gulin Gedik; Mario R Dal Poz
This article summarizes the origins of informatics, which is based on the science, engineering, and technology of computer hardware, software, and communications. In just four decades, from the 1950s to the 1990s, computer technology has progressed from slow, first-generation vacuum tubes, through the invention of the transistor and its incorporation into microprocessor chips, and ultimately, to fast, fourth-generation very-large-scale-integrated silicon chips. Programming has undergone a parallel transformation, from cumbersome, first-generation, machine languages to efficient, fourth-generation application-oriented languages. Communication has evolved from simple copper wires to complex fiberoptic cables in computer-linked networks. The digital computer has profound implications for the development and practice of clinical medicine.
Collen, M F
In 2012, Health/Medical informatics profession celebrates five jubilees in Bosnia and Herzegovina: a) Thirty five years from the introduction of the first automatic manipulation of data; b) Twenty five years from establishing Society for Medical Informatics BiH; c) Twenty years from establishing scientific and professional journal of the Society for Medical Informatics of Bosnia and Herzegovina „Acta Informatica Medica“; d) Twenty years from establishing first Cathdra for Medical Informatics on biomedical faculties in Bosnia and Herzegovina and e) Ten years from the introduction of “Distance learning” in medical curriculum. All of the five mentioned activities in the area of Medical informatics had special importance and gave appropriate contribution in the development of Health/Medical informatics in Bosnia And Herzegovina.
Increasing globalization calls for undergraduate nursing programs to develop opportunities for students to participate in study-abroad activities. For some students, the cost of such activities can prohibit participation. The influx of refugees to the United States provides an alternative opportunity for students to think and act globally without the cost of travel.This article discusses how a community health assessment, completed through a partnership with a public health department, addressed barriers to emergency preparedness for Somali refugees. Students collected data using a focus group of 10 female Somali refugees. The focus group participants had limited understanding of English and fewer than half could read written Somali. Students gained insight into the language barriers among the refugees and the need for cultural sensitivity. They provided outreach, met Somali community leaders, and started the process of communication on emergency preparedness. PMID:21473478
Lenz, Brenda K; Warner, Susan
Although the risks of tobacco smoking have been known for decades, the pandemic of tobacco use continues. There are an estimated 1.3 billion smokers worldwide, along with millions more using various oral tobacco products. Recent global estimates place the mortality burden from tobacco use at over 6 million annually, with nearly two-thirds of these deaths occurring in developing countries. If current patterns persist, there will be an estimated 1 billion deaths from tobacco during the twenty-first century. Part 1 of this two-part paper provides an overview of the tobacco pandemic, the scope of the pandemic, and its economic and health consequences. Part 2 reviews the history of tobacco control to date and addresses the current global strategy, based on the World Health Organization's (WHO's) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and the MPOWER package of interventions. Part 2 ends with a consideration of scenarios for the future of the pandemic. PMID:19536066
Wipfli, H; Samet, J M
Although the risks of tobacco smoking have been known for decades, the pandemic of tobacco use continues. There are an estimated 1.3 billion smokers worldwide, along with millions more using various oral tobacco products. Recent global estimates place the mortality burden from tobacco use at over 6 million annually, with nearly two-thirds of these deaths occurring in developing countries. If current patterns persist, there will be an estimated 1 billion deaths from tobacco during the twenty-first century. Part 1 of this two-part paper provides an overview of the tobacco pandemic, the scope of the pandemic, and its economic and health consequences. Part 2 reviews the history of tobacco control to date and addresses the current global strategy, based on the World Health Organization's (WHO's) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and the MPOWER package of interventions. Part 2 ends with a consideration of scenarios for the future of the pandemic. PMID:19536067
Wipfli, H; Samet, J M
The developing countries have common problems-problems of hunger, poverty, elimination of illiteracy, and the identification and management of resources. The role of informatics will vary significantly from one country to the other. The technologies devel...
P. D. Jain
International research agendas are placing greater emphasis on the need for more sustainable development to achieve gains in global health. Research using ecosystem approaches to health, and the wider field of ecohealth, contribute to this goal, by addressing health in the context of inter-linked social and ecological systems. We review recent contributions to conceptual development of ecosystem approaches to health, with insights from their application in international development research. Various similar frameworks have emerged to apply the approach. Most predicate integration across disciplines and sectors, stakeholder participation, and an articulation of sustainability and equity to achieve relevant actions for change. Drawing on several frameworks and on case studies, a model process for application of ecosystem approaches is proposed, consisting of an iterative cycles of participatory study design, knowledge generation, intervention, and systematization of knowledge. The benefits of the research approach include innovations that improve health, evidence-based policies that reduce health risks; empowerment of marginalized groups through knowledge gained, and more effective engagement of decision makers. With improved tools to describe environmental and economic dimensions, and explicit strategies for scaling-up the use and application of research results, the field of ecohealth will help integrate both improved health and sustainability into the development agenda. PMID:22961374
Charron, Dominique Frances
December 1st marks World AIDS Day with the theme ‘Getting to zero’. Three years ago, UNAIDS articulated what was then considered to be an ambitious vision, the aspiration for zero new HIV infections and zero-AIDS related deaths underpinned by zero discrimination. As we imagine the Post-2015 development agenda, we can and should reconceptualise this vision as a set of concrete goals. This Viewpoint argues that today’s rapidly changing world, including its shifting geo-political and economic landscape, requires policy responses that are context-sensitive. We highlight the Shared Responsibility-Global Solidarity agenda, as pioneered by the African Union in its recent Roadmap on AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, to illustrate ways in which global health can be re-thought to tackle twenty-first century challenges. In light of the emerging debate on what a Post-2015 development agenda and accountability framework should look like, we argue that the AIDS response offers lessons as a pathfinder which can pave the way for global health responses in which the most marginalised are at the centre of the debate, human rights are protected under the rule of law, strong accountability is in place for results for people, and community and participatory processes are the norm. These hard-learned and -won principles of the AIDS response are critical if we are to realize a world in which there is zero inequality and health justice for all.
Poverty and other forms of inequity undermine individual and population health and retard development. Although absolute poverty has reportedly declined in recent years, research suggests that relative poverty or the gap between the rich and poor within and between countries has been exacerbated over this same period. There is growing concern about the feminization of poverty, and the impact globalization is having on this important social problem. Gender inequality persists in all regions, and women and girls continue to be over-represented among the world's poor. This suggests that women are not consistently benefitting from the economic, political and social gains globalization can offer. Instead, it appears that poor women and girls, particularly those living in developing countries, are disproportionately burdened by the costs of these swift changes to the detriment of their personal health and well-being. Immediate action is needed to correct these disparities and ensure that globalization supports both national and international commitments to poverty reduction, and the, promotion of women's health and human rights. PMID:16512333
Sicchia, Suzanne R; Maclean, Heather
Globalization on the one side is highly wellcome as simplifying trade, communication or tourism. On the other side globalization seems to uniform cultural values, which causes anxieties and outrage in many countries. Since decades "western" medical knowledge is being transferred into the Third World. This paper begins with the problem of a worldwide understanding of terms like sickness, disease, illness and health. Results gained from investigations in the field of Medical Anthropology emphasize the importance to integrate any cultural values and symbols of the target population. Examples given to demonstrate difficulties and requirements for any transfer of western medicine into those countries. A close view into the health systems, concepts of health and disease, coping and treatment in England, France, Germany and the USA shows considerable divergences. "Western" medicine is not based on an uniform conception, but is modulated by traditional values of the nations. Any attempt to globalize "western" medicine must respect and integrate the inherited thinking pattern and medical system of a population in order to benefit the people. PMID:15641206
Schroeder-Kurth, Traute Marianne
The Global Infectious Diseases and Epidemiology Network (GIDEON) (http:\\/\\/www.gideononline.com) consists of 4 modules. The first is designed to generate a ranked differential diagnosis list for any infectious diseases scenario in any of 220 countries. The second follows the country-specific epidemiology of 337 individual diseases. The third presents a comprehensive ency- clopedia of 308 generic anti-infective drugs and vaccines, including a
Stephen C. Edberg
In this chapter, we outline a vision of Web Intelligence (WI) research from the viewpoint of Brain Informatics (BI), a new\\u000a interdisciplinary field that systematically studies the mechanisms of human information processing from both the macro and\\u000a micro viewpoints by combining experimental cognitive neuroscience with advanced information technology. BI studies human brain\\u000a from the viewpoint of informatics (i.e., human brain
Ning Zhong; Jiming Liu; Yiyu Yao; Jing-long Wu; Shengfu Lu; Yulin Qin; Kuncheng Li; Benjamin W. Wah
Background Pharmacogenomic technologies aim to redirect drug development to increase safety and efficacy of individual care. There is much hope that their implementation in the drug development process will help respond to population health needs, particularly in developing countries. However, there is also fear that novel pharmacogenomic drugs will remain too costly, be designed for the needs of the wealthy nations, and so constitute an unnecessary "luxury" for most populations. In this paper, we analyse the promise that pharmacogenomic technologies hold for improving global public health and identify strategies and challenges associated with their implementation. Discussion This paper evaluates the capacity of pharmacogenomic technologies to meet six criteria described by the University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics group: 1) impact of the technology, 2) technology appropriateness, 3) capacity to address local burdens, 4) feasibility to be implemented in reasonable time, 5) capacity to reduce the knowledge gap, and 6) capacity for indirect benefits. We argue that the implementation of pharmacogenomic technologies in the drug development process can positively impact population health. However, this positive impact depends on how and for which purposes the technologies are used. We discuss the potential of these technologies to stimulate drug discovery in the case of rare (orphan diseases) or neglected diseases, but also to reduce acute adverse drug reactions in infectious disease treatment and prevention, which promises to improve global public health. Conclusions The implementation of pharmacogenomic technologies may lead to the development of drugs that appear to be a "luxury" for populations in need of numerous interventions that are known to have a demonstrable impact on population health (e.g., secure access to potable water, reduction of social inequities, health education). However, our analysis shows that pharmacogenomic technologies do have the potential to redirect drug development and distribution so as to improve the health of vulnerable populations. Strategies should thus be developed to better direct their implementation towards meeting the needs and responding to the realities of populations of the developing world (i.e., social, cultural and political acceptability, and local health burdens), making pharmacogenomic technologies a necessary "luxury" for global public health.
Intimate partner violence—physical, psychological, or sexual abuse of women perpetrated by intimate partners—is one of the most common forms of violence against women, and is associated with adverse women’s reproductive and maternal health outcomes. We review the opportunities for addressing intimate partner violence by the health system, examine promising approaches, and outline future challenges for developing effective health systems responses to violence. Evidence shows that women seldom approach support services in response to violence, but do seek health care at some point in their lives. In fact, women’s utilization of reproductive health services in particular has been increasing globally. These services have a broad reach and represent an important opportunity to engage in violence prevention. Although health systems-based responses to intimate partner violence have emerged, rigorous evaluations to guide program planning and policy efforts to reduce violence are limited. US programs have expanded from improving individual provider prevention practices to instituting system-wide changes to ensure sustainability of these practices. Developing country program responses, though limited, have been system-wide and multi-sectoral right from the start. Our review highlights three challenges for developing and expanding health systems responses to violence. First, interventions should focus on creating a supportive environment within the health system and strengthening linkages across health care and allied sectors. Second, rigorous evaluations of health-sector based interventions are needed for a sound evidence-base to guide programmatic and policy decisions. Finally, research is needed to identify the entry points for engaging men on violence prevention, and to examine the feasibility and effectiveness of such interventions.
Chibber, Karuna S.; Krishnan, Suneeta
A historical survey of medical informatics (MI) in Croatia is presented from the beginnings in the late sixties of the 20th century to the present time. Described are MI projects, applications in clinical medicine and public health, start and development of MI research and education, beginnings of international cooperation, establishment of the Croatian Society for MI and its membership to EFMI and IMIA. The current status of computerization of the Croatian healthcare system is sketched as well as the present graduate and postgraduate study MI curricula. The information contained in the paper shows that MI in Croatia developed and still develops along with its advancement elsewhere.
Dezelic, Gjuro; Kern, Josipa; Petrovecki, Mladen; Ilakovac, Vesna; Hercigonja-Szekeres, Mira
Abstract Reproductive health research in low-resource settings poses unique and complex challenges that must be addressed to ensure that global research is conducted with strict adherence to ethical principles, offers direct benefit to the research subjects, and has the potential for adoption of positive findings to the target population. This article addresses challenges to conducting reproductive health research in low-resource settings in the following areas: (1) establishment and maintenance of global collaboration, (2) community partnerships, (3) ethical issues, including informed consent and the role of incentives, (4) staff training and development, (5) data collection and management, and (6) infrastructure and logistics. Particular attention to these challenges is important to ensure that research is culturally appropriate and methodologically sound and enhances the adoption of health-promoting behaviors. Rigorous evaluation of interventions in low-resource settings may be a cost-effective and time-efficient way to identify interventions for large-scale program replication to improve women's health.
Kapungu, Chisina T.; Geller, Stacie E.; Miller, Suellen
Biobanks can have a pivotal role in elucidating disease etiology, translation, and advancing public health. However, meeting these challenges hinges on a critical shift in the way science is conducted and requires biobank harmonization. There is growing recognition that a common strategy is imperative to develop biobanking globally and effectively. To help guide this strategy, we articulate key principles, goals, and priorities underpinning a roadmap for global biobanking to accelerate health science, patient care, and public health. The need to manage and share very large amounts of data has driven innovations on many fronts. Although technological solutions are allowing biobanks to reach new levels of integration, increasingly powerful data-collection tools, analytical techniques, and the results they generate raise new ethical and legal issues and challenges, necessitating a reconsideration of previous policies, practices, and ethical norms. These manifold advances and the investments that support them are also fueling opportunities for biobanks to ultimately become integral parts of health-care systems in many countries. International harmonization to increase interoperability and sustainability are two strategic priorities for biobanking. Tackling these issues requires an environment favorably inclined toward scientific funding and equipped to address socio-ethical challenges. Cooperation and collaboration must extend beyond systems to enable the exchange of data and samples to strategic alliances between many organizations, including governmental bodies, funding agencies, public and private science enterprises, and other stakeholders, including patients. A common vision is required and we articulate the essential basis of such a vision herein. PMID:22713808
Harris, Jennifer R; Burton, Paul; Knoppers, Bartha Maria; Lindpaintner, Klaus; Bledsoe, Marianna; Brookes, Anthony J; Budin-Ljøsne, Isabelle; Chisholm, Rex; Cox, David; Deschênes, Mylène; Fortier, Isabel; Hainaut, Pierre; Hewitt, Robert; Kaye, Jane; Litton, Jan-Eric; Metspalu, Andres; Ollier, Bill; Palmer, Lyle J; Palotie, Aarno; Pasterk, Markus; Perola, Markus; Riegman, Peter H J; van Ommen, Gert-Jan; Yuille, Martin; Zatloukal, Kurt
There are rapid changes occurring in the health care environment. Radiologists face new challenges but also new opportunities. The purpose of this report is to review how new informatics tools and developments can help the radiologist respond to the drive for safety, quality, and efficiency. These tools will be of assistance in conducting research and education. They not only provide greater efficiency in traditional operations but also open new pathways for the delivery of new services and imaging technologies. Our future as a specialty is dependent on integrating these informatics solutions into our daily practice. PMID:24029051
Mendelson, David S; Rubin, Daniel L
Widening disparities in health and human rights at a global level represent the dark side of progress associated with escalation of economic and military exploitation and exponential population growth in the 20th century. Even the most basic universal human rights cannot be achieved for all under these circumstances. The goal of improved population health will be similarly elusive while medical care is commodified and exploited for commercial gain in the marketplace. Recognition of the powerful forces that polarize our world and commitment to reversing them are essential for the achievement of human rights for all, for the improvement of public health, and for the peaceful progress required to protect the "rational self-interest" of the most privileged people on earth against the escalation of war, disease, and other destructive forces arising from widespread poverty and ecological degradation.
Benatar, S R
Major disasters pose significant threats to population health: rapid-onset crises can result in a massive loss of life, while protracted emergencies can result in both direct and indirect adverse effects to population health and livelihoods. In many cases, windows of opportunity present themselves to mitigate the effects of emergencies, but these opportunities must be seized and acted upon. Regrettably, current models of international development and global public health are frequently reactive, rather than preventive, with regard to major emergencies; major humanitarian responses frequently occur only once select indicators have reached or breached established emergency thresholds, which are late indicators of a population's health. In order to avoid these predictable late responses, current models of international development and their relationship to emergency humanitarian responses need to be placed under the microscope. The public health community must serve as strong advocates for interventions to address worsening public health situations before they tip into crisis, and should be advocates for the reconceptualization and reform of priority setting in international development. The failure to do so quite clearly comes at the expense of some of the world's most vulnerable populations. PMID:23823894
Nickerson, Jason W
Weaknesses in health systems contribute to a failure to improve health outcomes in developing countries, despite increased official development assistance. Changes in the demands on health systems, as well as their scope to respond, mean that the situation is likely to become more problematic in the future. Diverse global initiatives seek to strengthen health systems, but progress will require better coordination between them, use of strategies based on the best available evidence obtained especially from evaluation of large scale programs, and improved global aid architecture that supports these processes. This paper sets out the case for global leadership to support health systems investments and help ensure the synergies between vertical and horizontal programs that are essential for effective functioning of health systems. At national level, it is essential to increase capacity to manage and deliver services, situate interventions firmly within national strategies, ensure effective implementation, and co-ordinate external support with local resources. Health systems performance should be monitored, with clear lines of accountability, and reforms should build on evidence of what works in what circumstances.
Purpose The aim of this paper is to demonstrate how informatics applications can support the assessment and visualization of older adults’ wellness. A theoretical framework is presented that informs the design of a technology enhanced screening platform for wellness. We highlight an ongoing pilot demonstration in an assisted living facility where a community room has been converted into a living laboratory for the use of diverse technologies (including a telehealth component to capture vital signs and customized questionnaires, a gait analysis component and cognitive assessment software) to assess the multiple aspects of wellness of older adults. Methods A demonstration project was introduced in an independent retirement community to validate our theoretical framework of informatics and wellness assessment for older adults. Subjects are being recruited to attend a community room and engage in the use of diverse technologies to assess cognitive performance, physiological and gait variables as well as psychometrics pertaining to social and spiritual components of wellness for a period of eight weeks. Data are integrated from various sources into one study database and different visualization approaches are pursued to efficiently display potential correlations between different parameters and capture overall trends of wellness. Results Preliminary findings indicate that older adults are willing to participate in technology-enhanced interventions and embrace different information technology applications given appropriate and customized training and hardware and software features that address potential functional limitations and inexperience with computers. Conclusion Informatics can advance health care for older adults and support a holistic assessment of older adults’ wellness. The described framework can support decision making, link formal and informal caregiving networks and identify early trends and patterns that if addressed could reduce adverse health events.
Demiris, George; Thompson, Hilaire J.; Reeder, Blaine; Wilamowska, Katarzyna; Zaslavsky, Oleg
International health electives offer unique experiences for medical students to develop clinical skills and cultural competencies in unique and diverse environments. Medical students have been increasingly pursuing these learning opportunities despite the challenges. However, their goals in pursuing these opportunities and the relation between their learning objectives and actual experiences have not been studied adequately. It is important to assess these programs based on student objectives and whether those objectives are met. Thirty-seven medical students from five cohorts at a US medical school completed pre-post questionnaires regarding their global health elective objectives and learning experiences. The questionnaires included mostly open-ended questions and a Likert-scale rating of their overall experience. Qualitative thematic analysis involved inductive coding and followed a content-driven immersion-crystallization approach. Quantitative program evaluation measures yielded descriptive statistics. Five general objectives and four types of learning experiences were identified. Student objectives were: (1) to observe the practice and organization of health care in another country; (2) improve medical/surgical skills; (3) improve language skills; (4) learn about another culture; and (5) deepen knowledge of infectious diseases. All of their objectives were achieved. Moreover, one learning theme, "self-reflection and personal growth," was not a student objective. Quantitative assessment showed that most students had a favorable elective experience. Program challenges were also identified. Students in a global health elective were able to fulfill self-identified learning objectives, while also gaining other unexpected yet important lessons. Students' learning objectives also should be considered in evaluating learning experiences in international health electives. PMID:22367606
Holmes, David; Zayas, Luis E; Koyfman, Alex
The increased flow of goods, people, and ideas associated with globalization have contributed to an increase in noncommunicable diseases in much of the world. One response has been to encourage lifestyle changes with educational programmes, thus controlling the lifestyle-related disease. Key assumptions with this approach are that people's food preferences are linked to their consumption patterns, and that consumption patterns can be transformed through educational initiatives. To investigate these assumptions, and policies that derive from it, we undertook a broad-based survey of food-related issues in the Kingdom of Tonga using a questionnaire. Data on the relationships between food preferences, perception of nutritional value, and frequency of consumption were gathered for both traditional and imported foods. The results show that the consumption of health-compromising imported foods was unrelated either to food preferences or to perceptions of nutritional value, and suggests that diet-related diseases may not be amenable to interventions based on education campaigns. Given recent initiatives towards trade liberalization and the creation of the World Trade Organization, tariffs or import bans may not serve as alternative measures to control consumption. This presents significant challenges to health policy-makers serving economically marginal populations and suggests that some population health concerns cannot be adequately addressed without awareness of the effects of global trade.
Evans, M.; Sinclair, R. C.; Fusimalohi, C.; Liava'a, V.
The Internet has become an important health information resource for patients and the general public. Wikipedia, a collaboratively written Web-based encyclopedia, has become the dominant online reference work. It is usually among the top results of search engine queries, including when medical information is sought. Since April 2004, editors have formed a group called WikiProject Medicine to coordinate and discuss the English-language Wikipedia's medical content. This paper, written by members of the WikiProject Medicine, discusses the intricacies, strengths, and weaknesses of Wikipedia as a source of health information and compares it with other medical wikis. Medical professionals, their societies, patient groups, and institutions can help improve Wikipedia's health-related entries. Several examples of partnerships already show that there is enthusiasm to strengthen Wikipedia's biomedical content. Given its unique global reach, we believe its possibilities for use as a tool for worldwide health promotion are underestimated. We invite the medical community to join in editing Wikipedia, with the goal of providing people with free access to reliable, understandable, and up-to-date health information. PMID:21282098
Heilman, James M; Kemmann, Eckhard; Bonert, Michael; Chatterjee, Anwesh; Ragar, Brent; Beards, Graham M; Iberri, David J; Harvey, Matthew; Thomas, Brendan; Stomp, Wouter; Martone, Michael F; Lodge, Daniel J; Vondracek, Andrea; de Wolff, Jacob F; Liber, Casimir; Grover, Samir C; Vickers, Tim J; Meskó, Bertalan; Laurent, Michaël R
Vaccine informatics is an emerging research area that focuses on development and applications of bioinformatics methods that can be used to facilitate every aspect of the preclinical, clinical, and postlicensure vaccine enterprises. Many immunoinformatics algorithms and resources have been developed to predict T- and B-cell immune epitopes for epitope vaccine development and protective immunity analysis. Vaccine protein candidates are predictable in silico from genome sequences using reverse vaccinology. Systematic transcriptomics and proteomics gene expression analyses facilitate rational vaccine design and identification of gene responses that are correlates of protection in vivo. Mathematical simulations have been used to model host-pathogen interactions and improve vaccine production and vaccination protocols. Computational methods have also been used for development of immunization registries or immunization information systems, assessment of vaccine safety and efficacy, and immunization modeling. Computational literature mining and databases effectively process, mine, and store large amounts of vaccine literature and data. Vaccine Ontology (VO) has been initiated to integrate various vaccine data and support automated reasoning.
He, Yongqun; Rappuoli, Rino; De Groot, Anne S.; Chen, Robert T.
For the practicing physician, the behavioral implications of preventing, diagnosing, and treating cancer are many and varied. Fortunately, an enhanced capacity in informatics may help create a redesigned ecosystem in which applying evidence-based principles from behavioral medicine will become a routine part of care. Innovation to support this evolution will be spurred by the “meaningful use” criteria stipulated by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009, and by focused research and development efforts within the broader health information ecosystem. The implications for how to better integrate evidence-based principles in behavioral medicine into oncology care through both spheres of development are discussed within the framework of the cancer control continuum. The promise of using the data collected through these tools to accelerate discovery in psycho-oncology is also discussed. If nurtured appropriately, these developments should help accelerate successes against cancer by altering the behavioral milieu.
Hesse, Bradford W.; Suls, Jerry M.
Global warming is likely to result in a variety of environmental effects ranging from impacts on species diversity, changes in population size in flora and fauna, increases in sea level and possible impacts on the primary productivity of the sea. Potential impacts on human health and welfare have included possible increases in heat related mortality, changes in the distribution of disease vectors, and possible impacts on respiratory diseases including hayfever and asthma. Most of the focus thus far is on effects which are directly related to increases in temperature, e.g., heat stress or perhaps one step removed, e.g., changes in vector distribution. Some of the more severe impacts are likely to be much less direct, e.g., increases in migration due to agricultural failure following prolonged droughts. This paper discusses two possible approaches to the study of these less-direct impacts of global warming and presents information from on-going research using each of these approaches.
The panel intended to collect data, opinions and views for a systematic and multiaxial approach for a comprehensive presentation of “History of Medical Informatics”, treating both general (global) characteristics, but emphasizing the particular features for Europe. The topic was not only a subject of large interest but also of great importance in preparing a detailed material for celebration of forty years of medical informatics in Europe. The panel comprised a list of topics, trying to cover all major aspects to be discussed. Proposals of staging the major periods of medical informatics history were also discussed.
Mihalas, George; Zvarova, Jana; Kulikowski, Casimir; Ball, Marion; van Bemmel, Jan; Hasman, Arie; Masic, Izet; Whitehouse, Diane; Barber, Barry
"Air pollution and population health" is one of the most important environmental and public health issues. Economic development, urbanization, energy consumption, transportation/motorization, and rapid population growth are major driving forces of air pollution in large cities, especially in megacities. Air pollution levels in developed countries have been decreasing dramatically in recent decades. However, in developing countries and in countries in transition, air pollution levels are still at relatively high levels, though the levels have been gradually decreasing or have remained stable during rapid economic development. In recent years, several hundred epidemiological studies have emerged showing adverse health effects associated with short-term and long-term exposure to air pollutants. Time-series studies conducted in Asian cities also showed similar health effects on mortality associated with exposure to particulate matter (PM), sulfur dioxide (SO(2)), nitrogen dioxide (NO(2)) and ozone (O(3)) to those explored in Europe and North America. The World Health Organization (WHO) published the "WHO Air Quality Guidelines (AQGs), Global Update" in 2006. These updated AQGs provide much stricter guidelines for PM, NO(2), SO(2) and O(3). Considering that current air pollution levels are much higher than the WHO-recommended AQGs, interim targets for these four air pollutants are also recommended for member states, especially for developing countries in setting their country-specific air quality standards. In conclusion, ambient air pollution is a health hazard. It is more important in Asian developing countries within the context of pollution level and population density. Improving air quality has substantial, measurable and important public health benefits. PMID:19568887
Chen, Bingheng; Kan, Haidong
After World War II, health was firmly integrated into the discourse about national development. Transition theories portrayed health improvements as part of an overall development pattern based on economic growth as modeled by the recent history of industrialization in high-income countries. In the 1970s, an increasing awareness of the environmental degradation caused by industrialization challenged the conventional model of development. Gradually, it became clear that health improvements depended on poverty-reduction strategies including industrialization. Industrialization, in turn, risked aggravating environmental degradation with its negative effects on public health. Thus, public health in low-income countries threatened to suffer from lack of economic development as well as from the results of global economic development. Similarly, demands of developing countries risked being trapped between calls for global wealth redistribution, a political impossibility, and calls for unrestricted material development, which, in a world of finite land, water, air, energy, and resources, increasingly looked like a physical impossibility, too. Various international bodies, including the WHO, the Brundtland Commission, and the World Bank, tried to capture the problem and solution strategies in development theories. Broadly conceived, two models have emerged: a "localist model," which analyzes national health data and advocates growth policies with a strong focus on poverty reduction, and a "globalist" model, based on global health data, which calls for growth optimization, rather than maximization. Both models have focused on different types of health burdens and have received support from different institutions. In a nutshell, the health discourse epitomized a larger controversy regarding competing visions of development. PMID:22467707
In this review, we summarize some of the recent work in emerging computational imaging, sensing and diagnostics techniques, along with some of the complementary non-computational modalities that can potentially transform the delivery of health care globally. As computational resources are becoming more and more powerful, while also getting cheaper and more widely available, traditional imaging, sensing and diagnostic tools will continue to experience a revolution through simplification of their designs, making them compact, light-weight, cost-effective, and yet quite powerful in terms of their performance when compared to their bench-top counterparts. PMID:24484875
Coskun, Ahmet F; Ozcan, Aydogan
The American Society of Health- System Pharmacists (ASHP) believes that specially trained pharmacy technicians can assume important supportive roles in pharmacy informatics. These roles include automation and technology systems management, management of projects, training and education, policy and governance, customer service, charge integrity, and reporting. Such roles require pharmacy technicians to gain expertise in information technology (IT) systems, including knowledge of interfaces, computer management techniques, problem resolution, and database maintenance. This knowledge could be acquired through specialized training or experience in a health science or allied scientific field (e.g., health informatics). With appropriate safeguards and supervision, pharmacy technician informaticists (PTIs) will manage IT processes in health-system pharmacy services, ensuring a safe and efficient medication-use process. PMID:24429021
abstractions also are attractive for defining the core contributions of basic research in informatics We can understand many central activities within informatics in terms defining, refining, applying, and evaluating domain ontologies and problem - solving methods Conclusion: Construing work in medical informatics in terms of actions involving ontologies and problem - solving methods may move us closer to a theoretical
Mark A. Musen
This paper examines the expanding presence of multinational cigarette companies into almost every country in the world, and discusses the health implications of this global penetration. Cigarettes deserve special attention because tobacco is the only legally available consumer product that is harmful to one's health when used as intended. A temptation exists to blame governments for the existence of health-threatening products within their borders. However, this paper illustrates the extent to which extra-national forces influence domestic policies and circumstances. Cigarette smokers are often blamed for their lethal habit, despite billion-dollar promotional schemes which attract people to smoking, obscuring the harmful consequences of consuming a highly addictive drug. Multinational cigarette companies are increasingly targeting Asian and Third World populations. To facilitate this market penetration, political avenues are often pursued with considerable success, disregarding the health implications associated with cigarette tobacco. The use of tobacco in development programs (e.g. the U.S. 'Food for Peace' program) has political and economic implications for donor and recipient countries, and lucrative advantages for the tobacco companies. However, this paper recommends that corporate profits and foreign policy should not be pursued at the expense of tobacco-related diseases and premature deaths among Third World peoples. PMID:1776045
Stebbins, K R
Which are the essential global public health activities that should be carried out in order to attain the largest impact on poverty reduction and health improvement in the world? Since its foundation in 2001 the Human Mobile Population Committee (HMPC) has continued to devote its efforts to finding answers to this question, with a particular focus on the skin diseases of the Human Mobile Population (HMP) and other groups of disadvantaged people. In this article we present the model of socio-sanitary activity in the field of Migration, Poverty and Health of the Department of Preventive Medicine of Migration, Tourism and Tropical Dermatology (Dept.) at San Gallicano Institute--Research Institute for Hospitalization and Treatment (IRCCS)--in Rome (Italy). The activities of this dermatological centre are in the spirit of the HMPC's aims and we are of the opinion that this model is not only ethically valid, but also practically and economically convenient, and that there is evidence that our experience is worth repeating, in as many situations as possible, in the interest of public health. PMID:15869536
Morrone, Aldo; Toma, Luigi; Franco, Gennaro
Abstract While global health (GH) opportunities have expanded at schools of medicine, nursing, and public health, few examples of interprofessional approaches to GH education have been described. The elective GH program at our university serves as an important opportunity for high-quality interprofessional education. We undertook a qualitative study to examine the experience of student, faculty and administrative leaders of the program. We used content analysis to code responses and analyze data. Among the leadership, key themes fell within the categories of interprofessional education, student-faculty collaboration, professional development, and practical considerations for the development of such programs. The principles described could be considered by institutions seeking to develop meaningful partnerships in an effort to develop or refine interprofessional global health education programs. PMID:24491187
Peluso, Michael J; Hafler, Janet P; Sipsma, Heather; Cherlin, Emily
The increasing interconnectedness of the world and the factors that affect health lay the foundation for the evolving practice of global health diplomacy. There has been limited discussion in the nursing literature about the concept of global health diplomacy or the role of nurses in such initiatives. A discussion of this concept is presented here by the members of a Task Force on Global Health Diplomacy of the American Academy of Nursing Expert Panel on Global Nursing and Health (AAN EPGNH). The purpose of this article is to present an integrative review of literature on the concept of global health diplomacy and to identify implications of this emerging field for nursing education, practice, and research. The steps proposed by Whittemore and Knafl (2005) were adapted and applied to the integrative review of theoretical and descriptive articles about the concept of global health diplomacy. This review included an analysis of the historical background, definition, and challenges of global health diplomacy and suggestions about the preparation of global health diplomats. The article concludes with a discussion of implications for nursing practice, education, and research. The Task Force endorses the definition of global health diplomacy proposed by Adams, Novotny, and Leslie (2008) but recommends that further dialogue and research is necessary to identify opportunities and educational requirements for nurses to contribute to the emerging field of global health diplomacy. PMID:22999856
Hunter, Anita; Wilson, Lynda; Stanhope, Marcia; Hatcher, Barbara; Hattar, Marianne; Hilfinger Messias, Deanne K; Powell, Dorothy
The Global Reproductive Health Forum @ Harvard (GRHF), a Website maintained by the Harvard School of Public Health, promotes the discussion of gender, reproductive rights, and sexual health, as well as distributing diverse educational information about these issues. The GRHF contains nine topic sections; each section provides an organized compilation of briefly annotated Internet resources, including mailing lists, Websites, and electronic publications. Sections cover issues such as Gender, Biology, and Technology; Reproductive Rights; Population and Family Planning; and Maternal Health. The GRHF also hosts an interactive bulletin board, allowing visitors to post and respond to messages relevant to reproductive health. The entire site is searchable. A Spanish version of the GRHF is available, and a French version is under construction.
Over the last twenty years there have been great advances in light microscopy with the result that multi-dimensional imaging has driven a revolution in modern biology. The development of new approaches of data acquisition are reportedly frequently, and yet the significant data management and analysis challenges presented by these new complex datasets remains largely unsolved. Like the well-developed field of genome bioinformatics, central repositories are and will be key resources, but there is a critical need for informatics tools in individual laboratories to help manage, share, visualize, and analyze image data. In this article we present the recent efforts by the bioimage informatics community to tackle these challenges and discuss our own vision for future development of bioimage informatics solution.
Swedlow, Jason R.; Goldberg, Ilya G.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.
Established in 1999, the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety advises the World Health Organization (WHO) on vaccine-related safety issues and enables WHO to respond promptly, efficiently, and with scientific rigor to issues of vaccine safety with potential global importance. The committee also assesses the implications of vaccine safety for practice worldwide and for WHO policies. We describe the principles on which the committee was established, its modus operandi, and the scope of the work undertaken, both present and future. We highlight its recent recommendations on major issues, including the purported link between the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine and autism and the safety of the mumps, influenza, yellow fever, BCG, and smallpox vaccines as well as that of thiomersal-containing vaccines. PMID:15514229
Folb, Peter I; Bernatowska, Ewa; Chen, Robert; Clemens, John; Dodoo, Alex N O; Ellenberg, Susan S; Farrington, C Patrick; John, T Jacob; Lambert, Paul-Henri; Macdonald, Noni E; Miller, Elizabeth; Salisbury, David; Schmitt, Heinz-J; Siegrist, Claire-Anne; Wimalaratne, Omala
Established in 1999, the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety advises the World Health Organization (WHO) on vaccine-related safety issues and enables WHO to respond promptly, efficiently, and with scientific rigor to issues of vaccine safety with potential global importance. The committee also assesses the implications of vaccine safety for practice worldwide and for WHO policies. We describe the principles on which the committee was established, its modus operandi, and the scope of the work undertaken, both present and future. We highlight its recent recommendations on major issues, including the purported link between the measles–mumps–rubella vaccine and autism and the safety of the mumps, influenza, yellow fever, BCG, and smallpox vaccines as well as that of thiomersal-containing vaccines.
Folb, Peter I.; Bernatowska, Ewa; Chen, Robert; Clemens, John; Dodoo, Alex N. O.; Ellenberg, Susan S.; Farrington, C. Patrick; John, T. Jacob; Lambert, Paul-Henri; MacDonald, Noni E.; Miller, Elizabeth; Salisbury, David; Schmitt, Heinz-J.; Siegrist, Claire-Anne; Wimalaratne, Omala
The scientific diaspora is a unique resource for U.S. universities. By drawing on the expertise, experience, and catalytic potential of diaspora scientists, universities can capitalize more fully on their diverse intellectual resources to make lasting contributions to global health. This article examines the unique contributions of the diaspora in international research collaborations, advantages of harnessing the diaspora and benefits to U.S. universities of fostering these collaborations, challenges faced by scientists who want to work with their home countries, examples of scientists engaging with their home countries, and specific strategies U.S. universities and donors can implement to catalyze these collaborations. The contributions of the diaspora to the United States are immense: International students enrolled in academic year 2007-2008 contributed an estimated $15 billion to the U.S. economy. As scientific research becomes increasingly global, the percentage of scientific publications with authors from foreign countries has grown from 8% in 1988 to 20% in 2005. Diaspora scientists can help build trusting relationships with scientists abroad, and international collaborations may improve the health of underserved populations at home. Although opportunities for diaspora networks are increasing, most home countries often lack enabling policies, infrastructure, and resources to effectively utilize their diaspora communities abroad. This article examines how some governments have successfully mobilized their scientific diaspora to become increasingly engaged in their national research agendas. Recommendations include specific strategies, including those that encourage U.S. universities to promote mini-sabbaticals and provide seed funding and flexible time frames. PMID:19318794
Anand, Nalini P; Hofman, Karen J; Glass, Roger I
Objectives This paper strives to develop a pragmatic view of the scope of practice and core characteristics of global health research (GHR) by examining the activities of 14 Canadian-funded global health teams that were in the process of implementing research programs. Methods Information was collected by a reflective exploration of team proposals and progress reports, a content analysis of the outputs from an all-team meeting and review of the literature. Results Teams adopted equity-centered, problem-focused, systems-based approaches intended to find upstream determinants that could make people more resilient to social and ecological factors impacting their health. Long-term visions and time frames were needed to develop and solidify fully functional interdisciplinary, multinational, multicultural partnerships. The implementation of research into practice was a motivating factor for all teams, but to do this, they recognized the need for evidence-based advice on how to best do this. Traditional measures of biomedical research excellence were necessary but not sufficient to encompass views of excellence of team-based interdisciplinary research, which includes features like originality, coherence and cumulative contributions to fields of study, acceptance by peers and success in translating research into gains in health status. An innovative and nuanced approached to GHR ethics was needed to deal with some unique ethical issues because the needs for GHR were not adequately addressed by institutional biomedical research ethics boards. Core competencies for GHR researchers were a blend of those needed for health promotion, population health, international development, sustainable development, and systems science. Discussion Developing acceptable and meaningful ways to evaluate the short-term contributions for GHR and forecast its long-term impacts is a strategic priority needed to defend decisions being made in GHR development. Planning and investing to support the underlying GHR elements and competencies that allow for adaptive, innovative, and supportive research partnerships to achieve ‘health for all’ are more likely to have long-term impacts than building research strategies around specific diseases of interest.
Stephen, Craig; Daibes, Ibrahim
Population ageing is the demographic process that characterises the first half of the twenty-first century. Australia's population is already ageing and the states and territories are ageing at different rates. Our understanding of the dementias remains limited and diagnosis in primary care settings is poor. Locating where older people with dementia are and how they are coping is an emerging need in health information management. In this paper we discuss how a spatially informed health information management system could support population ageing and the disconnected systems that address ageing. We illustrate this with examples from our work to show how spatial informatics can advance our understanding of and response to the implications of population ageing. PMID:23823296
Robertson, Hamish; Nicholas, Nick; Georgiou, Andrew; Johnson, Julie; Travaglia, Joanne
Organizations, health systems, and interested individuals globally are assessing and investigating issues related to community health care services, home health management, and advanced nursing practice. Scarcity of financial and human resources has motivated health care policy makers to rise to the challenge to explore skill mix in the health care workforce in the hope of improving multidisciplinary collaboration in the
Interest in short-term international placements in global health training for U.S.-based medical students is growing; the trend is mirrored for global health undergraduate students. Best practices in field-based global health training can increase success for medical students, but we lack a critical framework for the undergraduate global health…
Stewart, Kearsley A.
Objective: This study was part of the Medical Library Association's Nursing and Allied Health Resources Section's project to map the nursing literature. It identified core journals in nursing informatics and the journals referenced in them and analyzed coverage of those journals in selected indexes. Method: Five core journals were chosen and analyzed for 1996, 1997, and 1998. The references in the core journal articles were examined for type and number of formats cited during the selected time period. Bradford's Law of Scattering divided the journals into frequency zones. Results: The time interval, 1990 to 1998, produced 71% of the references. Internet references could not be tracked by date before 1990. Twelve journals were the most productive, 119 journals were somewhat productive, and 897 journals were the least productive. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association was the most prolific core journal. The 1998 journal references were compared in CINAHL, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index, and OCLC Article First. PubMed/MEDLINE had the highest indexing score.
Guenther, Johanna T.
Background/Context: This concluding article identifies the policy implications of education informatics and explores impacts of current copyright laws, legislative structures, publishing practices, and education organizations. Synthesizing the discussions in the preceding articles, this article highlights the importance of designing information…
Carr, Jo Ann; O'Brien, Nancy P.
With the aid of the detection on the multimedia messaging service (MMS) of the laser accidents, novel insecurity factors in laser safety informatics are investigated. By using continuously improved laser self-organization safety system, new concepts of laser safety are developed. Various kinds of accidents can be avoided when comprehensive protective measures are taken.
Chongwen Guan; Shizhan Lei; Yingjian Wang
During the 1980s, Turkey laid the foundation for its transition to an information-based economy (IBE). Nevertheless, when compared to peer-group countries that targeted informatics as a catalyst for economic modernization, Turkey has not yet adequately de...
The complexity and cost of isolating the root cause of system problems in large parallel computers generally scales with the size of the system. Syslog messages provide a primary source of system feedback, but manual review is tedious and error prone. Informatic analysis can be used to detect subtle anomalies in the syslog message stream, thereby increasing the availability of
Increased availability of large repositories of chemical compounds is creating new challenges and opportunities for the application of machine learning methods to problems in computational chemistry and chemical informatics. Because chemical compounds are often represented by the graph of their covalent bonds, machine learning methods in this domain must be capable of processing graphical structures with variable size. Here we
Liva Ralaivola; Sanjay Joshua Swamidass; Hiroto Saigo; Pierre Baldi
The National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory (NHEERL) is one of the laboratories in EPA's Office of Research and Development contributing the Global Change Research Program. NHEERL is studying the potential effects of global change on vulnerable ecosystems. ...
This editorial is dedicated in honor of Morris F. Collen, MD, a pioneer in the field of medical informatics. During his remarkable career, Dr. Collen's has made many important contributions not only to the field of medical informatics, but also to the public health and the creation of new models of payment and prevention. His endeavors and ideas found fertile ground and left a mark not only in the national, but also in the international setting. PMID:24648612
Ball, Marion; Lindberg, Donald; Masic, Izet
Background Global health is an expansive field, and global health careers are as diverse as the practice of medicine, with new paths being forged every year. Interest in global health among medical students, residents, and fellows has never been higher. As a result, a greater number of these physicians-in-training are participating in global health electives during their training. However, there is a gap between the level of trainee interest and the breadth and depth of educational opportunities that prepare them for a career in global health. Objective Global health experiences can complement and enhance each step of traditional physician training, from medical school through residency and fellowship. Global health experiences can expose trainees to patients with diverse pathologies, improve physical exam skills by decreasing reliance on laboratory tests and imaging, enhance awareness of costs and resource allocation in resource-poor settings, and foster cultural sensitivity. The aim of this article is to describe issues faced by physicians-in-training and the faculty who mentor them as trainees pursue careers in global health. Methods We conducted a narrative review that addresses opportunities and challenges, competing demands on learners' educational schedules, and the need for professional development for faculty mentors. Conclusions A widening gap between trainee interest and the available educational opportunities in global health may result in many medical students and residents participating in global health experiences without adequate preparation and mentorship. Without this essential support, global health training experiences may have detrimental consequences on both trainees and the communities hosting them. We discuss considerations at each training level, options for additional training, current career models in global health, and challenges and potential solutions during training and early career development.
Nelson, Brett D.; Kasper, Jennifer; Hibberd, Patricia L.; Thea, Donald M.; Herlihy, Julie M.
Electronic record in nursing is a set of all electronically stored data on a person in the field of health care. This set of data is written on the electronic media and properly organized. Various data, symbols, fields and corresponding records interconnected with the file as a set of records in some way constitute a database. Data entry in the field of health care is carried out from patient admission, stay at the ward through periodical treatment as applicable, and, if necessary, applying appropriate professional nursing knowledge summarizing the nursing diagnosis as a basis for deciding on the objectives and procedures to be used. Complete electronic form will be associated with electronic records of other hospitals and health care institutions. All health professionals will be able to access nursing, medical and other health information in compliance with the high standards of data protection. PMID:24979898
Kurtovi?, Biljana; Grgas-Bile, Cecilija; Kundrata, Danijela
Summary Background Medicine and biomedical sciences have become data-intensive fields, which, at the same time, enable the application of data-driven approaches and require sophisticated data analysis and data mining methods. Biomedical informatics provides a proper interdisciplinary context to integrate data and knowledge when processing available information, with the aim of giving effective decision-making support in clinics and translational research. Objectives To reflect on different perspectives related to the role of data analysis and data mining in biomedical informatics. Methods On the occasion of the 50th year of Methods of Information in Medicine a symposium was organized, that reflected on opportunities, challenges and priorities of organizing, representing and analysing data, information and knowledge in biomedicine and health care. The contributions of experts with a variety of backgrounds in the area of biomedical data analysis have been collected as one outcome of this symposium, in order to provide a broad, though coherent, overview of some of the most interesting aspects of the field. Results The paper presents sections on data accumulation and data-driven approaches in medical informatics, data and knowledge integration, statistical issues for the evaluation of data mining models, translational bioinformatics and bioinformatics aspects of genetic epidemiology. Conclusions Biomedical informatics represents a natural framework to properly and effectively apply data analysis and data mining methods in a decision-making context. In the future, it will be necessary to preserve the inclusive nature of the field and to foster an increasing sharing of data and methods between researchers.
Bellazzi, Riccardo; Diomidous, Marianna; Sarkar, Indra Neil; Takabayashi, Katsuhiko; Ziegler, Andreas; McCray, Alexa T.
Lipid mediator informatics is an emerging area denoted to the identification of bioactive lipid mediators (LMs) and their biosynthetic profiles and pathways. LM informatics and proteomics applied to inflammation, systems tissues research provides a powerful means of uncovering key biomarkers for novel processes in health and disease. By incorporating them with system biology analysis, we review here our initial steps toward elucidating relationships among a range of bimolecular classes and provide an appreciation of their roles and activities in the pathophysiology of disease. LM informatics employing liquid chromatography-ultraviolet-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-UV-MS/MS), gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), computer-based automated systems equipped with databases and novel searching algorithms, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to evaluate and profile temporal and spatial production of mediators combined with proteomics at defined points during experimental inflammation and its resolution enable us to identify novel mediators in resolution. The automated system including databases and searching algorithms is crucial for prompt and accurate analysis of these lipid mediators biosynthesized from precursor polyunsaturated fatty acids such as eicosanoids, resolvins, and neuroprotectins, which play key roles in human physiology and many prevalent diseases, especially those related to inflammation. This review presents detailed protocols used in our lab for LM informatics and proteomics using LC-UV-MS/MS, GC-MS, ELISA, novel databases and searching algorithms, and 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis and LC-nanospray-MS/MS peptide mapping. PMID:16752008
Lu, Yan; Hong, Song; Gotlinger, Katherine; Serhan, Charles N
Describes surveys of potential health-care employers and health-care professionals to identify the need for biomedical informatics programs. Outlines a certificate program, master of science in biomedicine and nursing informatics, and a Ph.D. program. (SK)
Haque, Syed S.; Gibson, David M.
This article addresses the increasing influence of economic rationalities in global health over the past 30 years by examining the genealogy of one economic strategy – taxation – that has become central to international anti-smoking initiatives in the global South. It argues that this genealogy sits uncomfortably with the usual story about economics and global health, which reduces the economisation of international health to neoliberal structural adjustment policies aimed at stabilisation, liberalisation and privatisation and laments their detrimental effect on health. While not disputing these policies' importance and damaging impact, the genealogy of tobacco taxes outlined in this article shows that the economisation of global health is not only about neoliberal structural adjustment policies but also about sin taxes, market failures and health economics. By stressing how changes in health like the global South's epidemiological transition can impact on economics and how beneficial taxation can be for health, it also shows that the relation between economics and health is not always unidirectional and detrimental to the latter. In doing so, the article contributes to the critique of the often mechanical use of neo-liberalism to explicate change and calls for other stories about the economisation of global health to be told.
...Docket No. CDC-2011-0004] Public Health Information Network (PHIN) Messaging...comments to the following address: Public Health Informatics and Technology Program...for a representative from the Public Health Informatics and Technology...
Undergraduate public health and global health studies are usually found at universities with graduate programs in the disciplines. Following the experience of teaching a short course in global health within the liberal arts, we reviewed global and public health offerings at 50 liberal arts colleges for the 2009–2010 academic year. Forty-two percent had a track, concentration, or program, and 30% had global or public health student organizations. All colleges listed at least one course in the fields, with the highest number in the social sciences. However, many colleges had not coordinated them into a theme. Values of a liberal arts education are found in the study of global and public health: social responsibility, critical thinking, ethical reasoning, and knowledge of the wider world. We propose identifying these programs within the undergraduate liberal arts as global public health. Capturing interest in global public health will enhance the curriculum and student experience.In this day and age, when the world is so fluid with regard to news and information, the knowledge that unnecessary deaths are occurring and that health care lags so far behind in some regions cannot be ignored. From the standpoint of basic human rights, suffering and inequity cannot be tolerated.Williams College student during a global health short course
Hill, David R.; Ainsworth, Robert M.; Partap, Uttara
Background Recognizing the growing demand from medical students and residents for more comprehensive global health training, and the paucity of explicit curricula on such issues, global health and curriculum experts from the six Ontario Family Medicine Residency Programs worked together to design a framework for global health curricula in family medicine training programs. Methods A working group comprised of global health educators from Ontario's six medical schools conducted a scoping review of global health curricula, competencies, and pedagogical approaches. The working group then hosted a full day meeting, inviting experts in education, clinical care, family medicine and public health, and developed a consensus process and draft framework to design global health curricula. Through a series of weekly teleconferences over the next six months, the framework was revised and used to guide the identification of enabling global health competencies (behaviours, skills and attitudes) for Canadian Family Medicine training. Results The main outcome was an evidence-informed interactive framework http://globalhealth.ennovativesolution.com/ to provide a shared foundation to guide the design, delivery and evaluation of global health education programs for Ontario's family medicine residency programs. The curriculum framework blended a definition and mission for global health training, core values and principles, global health competencies aligning with the Canadian Medical Education Directives for Specialists (CanMEDS) competencies, and key learning approaches. The framework guided the development of subsequent enabling competencies. Conclusions The shared curriculum framework can support the design, delivery and evaluation of global health curriculum in Canada and around the world, lay the foundation for research and development, provide consistency across programmes, and support the creation of learning and evaluation tools to align with the framework. The process used to develop this framework can be applied to other aspects of residency curriculum development.
The availability of health information on the Internet has equalized opportunities for knowledge between patients and their health care providers, creating a new phenomenon called the e-patient. E-patients use technology to actively participate in their health care and assume higher levels of responsibility for their own health and wellness. This phenomenon has implications for nursing informatics research related to e-patients and potential collaboration with practitioners in developing a collective wisdom. Nursing informatics can use the data, information, knowledge, and wisdom (DIKW) framework to understand how e-patients and clinicians may achieve this collective wisdom. Nurse informaticists can use constructivism and Gadamerian hermeneutics to bridge each stage of this framework to illustrate the fundamentals of patient and clinician interactions and commonality of language to achieve a collective wisdom. Examining the e-patient phenomenon will help nurse informaticists evaluate, design, develop, and determine the effectiveness of information systems used by e-patients. The Internet can facilitate a partnership between the patient and clinician and cultivate a collective wisdom, enhanced by collaboration between nurse informatics and e-patients. PMID:22221955
Gee, Perry M; Greenwood, Deborah A; Kim, Katherine K; Perez, Susan L; Staggers, Nancy; DeVon, Holli A
Chemical Exposure science is the study of human contact with chemicals (from manufacturing facilities, everyday products, waste) occurring in their environments and advances knowledge of the mechanisms and dynamics of events that cause or prevent adverse health outcomes. (adapted...
The Global Health programme (GHP) within the Health Service Executive (HSE) aims to improve health in developing countries by creating partnerships between Irish and developing world healthcare institutions. To ascertain the level of interest among HSE staff for the GHP a web-based survey was conducted. 1,028 responses were received. Medical professionals, 202 (27.7%) composed the largest category of respondents. The majority, 503 (69.3%) of respondents wished to actively participate in the GHP. 237 (23.1%) staff had previous experience of working in the developing world. This survey highlighted a number of themes respondents considered important for successful partnerships including: reciprocal staff exchange, joint scientific research, the avoidance of "brain drain" and utilising the Internet to link institutions. Less than 1% (2/203) of comments expressed a negative view of the GHP. PMID:24757891
Fitzpatrick, G; Weakliam, D; Boland, M; Fitzgerald, M
Global health has been an issue of seemingly low political importance in comparison with issues that have direct bearing on countries' national security. Recently, health has experienced a "political revolution" or a rise in political importance. Today, we face substantial global health challenges, from the spread of infectious disease, gaps in basic maternal and child health care, to the globalization of cancer. A recent estimate states that the "overall lifetime risk of developing cancer (both sexes) is expected to rise from more than one in three to one in two by 2015." These issues pose significant threats to international health security. To successfully combat these grave challenges, the international community must embrace and engage in global health diplomacy, defined by scholars Thomas Novotny and Vicanne Adams as a political activity aimed at improving global health, while at the same time maintaining and strengthening international relations. The IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) is an international organization with a unique mandate to "accelerate and enlarge the contribution of atomic energy to peace, health, and prosperity throughout the world." This article discusses global health diplomacy, reviews the IAEA's program activities in human health by focusing on radiation medicine and cancer, and the peaceful applications of atomic energy within the context of global health diplomacy. PMID:22560564
Deatsch-Kratochvil, Amanda N; Pascual, Thomas Neil; Kesner, Adam; Rosenblatt, Eduardo; Chhem, Rethy K
On the basis of a study by the Institute of Medicine, the current health care system is facing several challenges that may be addressed by changes in health professions educa- tion. The study focused on integration of five core compe- tencies into health professions education, one of which was informatics. This critical analysis investigates current use of technology and online
Bonnie Ainsley; Abbie Brown
Background Given that many low income countries are heavily reliant on external assistance to fund their health sectors the acceptance of obligations of international assistance and cooperation with regard to the right to health (global health obligations) is insufficiently understood and studied by international health and human rights scholars. Over the past decade Global Health Initiatives, like the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund) have adopted novel approaches to engaging with stakeholders in high and low income countries. This article explores how this experience impacted on acceptance of the international obligation to (help) fulfil the right to health beyond borders. Methods The authors conducted an extensive review of international human rights law literature, transnational legal process literature, global public health literature and grey literature pertaining to Global Health Initiatives. To complement this desk work and deepen their understanding of how and why different legal norms evolve the authors conducted 19 in-depth key informant interviews with actors engaged with three stakeholders; the European Union, the United States and Belgium. The authors then analysed the interviews through a transnational legal process lens. Results Through according value to the process of examining how and why different legal norms evolve transnational legal process offers us a tool for engaging with the dynamism of developments in global health suggesting that operationalising global health obligations could advance the right to health for all. Conclusions In many low-income countries the health sector is heavily dependent on external assistance to fulfil the right to health of people thus it is vital that policies and tools for delivering reliable, long-term assistance are developed so that the right to health for all becomes more than a dream. Our research suggests that the Global Fund experience offers lessons to build on.
Summary The Fogarty International Center (FIC) of the U.S. National Institutes of Health has supported long-term (>6 months) basic, clinical and applied research training and research for over 3,600 future leaders in science and public health from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs); tens of thousands more persons have received short-term training. FIC started these programs in 1988 with the flagship HIV/AIDS International Training and Research Program (AITRP) in response to the global pandemic. More than 23 extramural training and research programs plus an intramural program are now operating – all in collaboration with other Institutes and Centers at NIH, U.S. government agencies, foundations, and partner institutions in LMICs and the U.S. While infectious diseases still reign mightily in Sub-Saharan African and South East Asian countries, non-communicable diseases are emerging globally, including in LMICs. Newer FIC training programs are addressing chronic, non-communicable diseases and strengthening the quality of medical schools and health care provider training, in addition to expanding expertise in infectious diseases. The model for successful training is based on long-term commitments, institutional strengthening, “twinning” of research centers, focus on local problems, and active mentoring. Trainees from Africa, Asia, and Latin America have made notable scientific contributions to global health, attained leadership positions, and received special recognition nationally and internationally. As the FIC programs are institutional-strengthening partnerships and candidates are carefully selected and mentored, close to 90% of FIC trainees return to their countries of origin. After returning home the FIC-trained leaders have continued to mentor and train thousands of individuals in their home countries.
Breman, Joel G.; Bridbord, Kenneth; Kupfer, Linda E.; Glass, Roger I.
Background New technologies that emerge at the interface of computational and biomedical science could drive new advances in global health, therefore more training in technology is needed among health care workers. To assess the potential for informatics training using an approach designed to foster interaction at this interface, the University of Washington and the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia developed and assessed a one-week course that included a new Bioinformatics (BIO) track along with an established Medical/Public Health Informatics track (MI) for participants in Peru. Methods We assessed the background of the participants, and measured the knowledge gained by track-specific (MI or BIO) 30-minute pre- and post-tests. Participants' attitudes were evaluated both by daily evaluations and by an end-course evaluation. Results Forty-three participants enrolled in the course – 20 in the MI track and 23 in the BIO track. Of 20 questions, the mean % score for the MI track increased from 49.7 pre-test (standard deviation or SD = 17.0) to 59.7 (SD = 15.2) for the post-test (P = 0.002, n = 18). The BIO track mean score increased from 33.6 pre-test to 51.2 post-test (P < 0.001, n = 21). Most comments (76%) about any aspect of the course were positive. The main perceived strength of the course was the quality of the speakers, and the main perceived weakness was the short duration of the course. Overall, the course acceptability was very good to excellent with a rating of 4.1 (scale 1–5), and the usefulness of the course was rated as very good. Most participants (62.9%) expressed a positive opinion about having had the BIO and MI tracks come together for some of the lectures. Conclusion Pre- and post-test results and the positive evaluations by the participants indicate that this first joint Bioinformatics and Medical/Public Health Informatics (MI and BIO) course was a success.
Curioso, Walter H; Hansen, Jacquelyn R; Centurion-Lara, Arturo; Garcia, Patricia J; Wolf, Fredric M; Fuller, Sherrilynne; Holmes, King K; Kimball, Ann Marie
Infodemiology can be defined as the science of distribution and determinants of information in an electronic medium, specifically the Internet, or in a population, with the ultimate aim to inform public health and public policy. Infodemiology data can be collected and analyzed in near real time. Examples for infodemiology applications include: the analysis of queries from Internet search engines to predict disease outbreaks (eg. influenza); monitoring peoples' status updates on microblogs such as Twitter for syndromic surveillance; detecting and quantifying disparities in health information availability; identifying and monitoring of public health relevant publications on the Internet (eg. anti-vaccination sites, but also news articles or expert-curated outbreak reports); automated tools to measure information diffusion and knowledge translation, and tracking the effectiveness of health marketing campaigns. Moreover, analyzing how people search and navigate the Internet for health-related information, as well as how they communicate and share this information, can provide valuable insights into health-related behavior of populations. Seven years after the infodemiology concept was first introduced, this paper revisits the emerging fields of infodemiology and infoveillance and proposes an expanded framework, introducing some basic metrics such as information prevalence, concept occurrence ratios, and information incidence. The framework distinguishes supply-based applications (analyzing what is being published on the Internet, eg. on Web sites, newsgroups, blogs, microblogs and social media) from demand-based methods (search and navigation behavior), and further distinguishes passive from active infoveillance methods. Infodemiology metrics follow population health relevant events or predict them. Thus, these metrics and methods are potentially useful for public health practice and research, and should be further developed and standardized.
Vaccine research and development are experiencing a renaissance of interest from the global scientific community. There are four major reasons for this: (1) the lack of efficacious treatment for many devastating infections; (2) the emergence of multidrug resistant bacteria; (3) the need for improving the safety of the more traditional licensed vaccines; and finally, (4) the great promise for innovative vaccine design and research with convergence of omics sciences, such as genomics, proteomics, immunomics, and vaccinology. Our first project based on omics was initiated in 2000 and was termed reverse vaccinology. At that time, antigen identification was mainly based on bioinformatic analysis of a singular genome. Since then, omics-guided approaches have been applied to its full potential in several proof-of-concept studies in the industry, with the first reverse vaccinology-derived vaccine now in late stage clinical trials and several vaccines developed by omics in preclinical studies. In the meantime, vaccine discovery and development has been further improved with the support of proteomics, functional genomics, comparative genomics, structural biology, and most recently vaccinomics. We illustrate in this review how omics biotechnologies and integrative biology are expected to accelerate the identification of vaccine candidates against difficult pathogens for which traditional vaccine development has thus far been failing, and how research will provide safer vaccines and improved formulations for immunocompromised patients in the near future. Finally, we present a discussion to situate omics-guided rational vaccine design in the broader context of global public health and how it can benefit citizens in both developed and developing countries. PMID:21682594
Bagnoli, Fabio; Baudner, Barbara; Mishra, Ravi P N; Bartolini, Erika; Fiaschi, Luigi; Mariotti, Paolo; Nardi-Dei, Vincenzo; Boucher, Phil; Rappuoli, Rino
A new category has been added to the AGU index terms to allow indexing of items related to areas such as data management and analysis, large-scale computational experimentation and modeling, and hardware and software infrastructure. Topics included in the “1900 Informatics” category, compiled by representatives of AGU's Earth and Space Science Informatics (ESSI) focus group, include metadata, ontologies, virtual globes, semantic technology, and virtualization. The AGU index terms have many uses. For example, they are the controlled vocabulary for indexing AGU journal papers, book chapters, meeting abstracts, and Eos articles, as well as some external systems and data sets. The vocabulary also forms the basis of AGU’s “virtual journal” subsets, e-mail alerts, and RSS (“Really Simple Syndication”) Web feeds, and is also useful for browsing and searching AGU articles and abstracts. For more information on AGU index terms, visit http://www.agu.org/pubs/indexterms/.
Description logics and related formalisms are being applied in at least v e applica- tions in medical informatics|terminology, intelligent user interfaces, decision sup- port and semantic indexing, language technology, and systems integration. Impor- tant issues include size, complexity, connectivity, and the wide range of granularity required|medical terminologies require on the order of 250,000 concepts, some in- volving a dozen or
Although the application of legal instruments to international health issues — relative to other areas of international concern — is still at a rudimentary stage of development, the transnational health impacts of globalization provide a rationale for the codification and implementation of global norms to deal with shared problems. The experience of promulgating international agreements in other areas closely related
Allyn L. Taylor; Douglas W. Bettcher
Summary Conservation medicine is an emerging discipline that links human and animal health with ecosystem health and global environmental change. The biosphere is threatened by several pervasive and synergistic phenomena that are the result of increasing human pressures on the planet: climate change, biological impoverishment (loss of biodiversity and ecological processes), emerging infectious diseases ('pathogen pollution') and global 'toxification' (pollutants
A. A. Aguirre; A. Gómez
This review attempts to analyse the global health agenda-setting process in the European Union (EU). We give an overview of the European perspective on global