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Help Me, Help You; Lend a Hand in Global Health

text reading, "Top 10 threats to global health" with text below naming the threats

Q&A with MPH Faculty Member Luba Louise Ivanov PhD, RN, FAAN

Have you ever thought about how the health of an individual in the desserts of the Middle East may effect the health of someone living in the United States? In 2016, malaria – a preventable disease – occurred worldwide in 216 million cases. Of those cases, 445,000 individuals died, mostly children residing within Africa. The World Health Organization cites that malaria, tuberculosis, stroke and HIV/AIDS were among the leading causes of death within low-income counties in 2016.

Luba Louise Ivanov, faculty member at Chamberlain University’s Master of Public Health (MPH) degree program, recently talked with us about how she has spearheaded change to impact global health. Below, she discusses ways you can and may already be lending a hand in raising awareness and making a difference in bringing global health to the forefront.

What sparked your passion for global health?

Our world is interconnected. What happens in one part of the world, impacts all of us. As a result, it is important to understand global health from a broad perspective. Also, I am an immigrant and have experienced many things typical of an immigrant. This helped me understand the role of global health in all of our lives.

Your drive to impact global health has led you on quite the journey. Can you tell us about it? What are some ways you’ve personally effected global health?

Most recently, I developed a global health practicum course and redeveloped a global health course offered to MPH students [at Chamberlain University]. I have also been involved in a community health and public health project in [the Eastern European country of] Moldova for the past 5 years and I conducted research in Russia, which has been published and presented at national and international conferences. In addition, I have been a keynote speaker at a conference in Turkey and had an internship at the World Health Organization. All of these examples have helped me better understand global health and its role and impact in our world.

As an educational institution, how can we work to bring global health to the forefront?

Providing international experiences for students in all programs would be beneficial to provide them with a better understanding of global health. Faculty could be encouraged to conduct research globally and with international counter parts.

From my understanding, Chamberlain University currently has opportunities for students to engage with public and global health. How are students prepared to impact global health?

The students in the MPH [degree] program have a required global health course and there is an option for students to get a Global Health Certificate outside of the degree program. Students also have the opportunity to do their fieldwork practicum at the end of their coursework in a global setting. Student in the BSN degree program can also expand their education and gain deeper understanding of cultural and socioeconomic differences by attending one of our Global Health Education Program trips.

As an advocate for global health, what is your greatest hope?

My greatest hope for global health is to help students broaden their perspective of health. This would allow them to better understand what the challenges that populations in our world face and what they can do to help advocate for them.

Why do you think the topic of global health is being highlighted during National Public Health Week?

There is a lot of misunderstanding about global health today. Some individuals may view global health as a negative movement. I hope that the global health focused day will help to provide further education on the issue.

Looking for ways to contribute to the broad issue of global health? Explore the exciting opportunities available through Chamberlain University’s Master of Public Health degree program. Request more information here.

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