My Journey of Medical Pursuit

Written by Dr. Bulat Ziganshin, Director of the International Affairs Office at the WCHN/UVMLCOM Global Health Program and Director of the Global Health Elective for American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine and Ross University School of Medicine students

Science and medicine have had a significant presence in my life since childhood, as my parents are both physician-scientists. Through the discussion of medical topics at the dinner table and frequent visits to their workplaces, I came to greatly respect these professions. When I was nine, my parents were invited to work as Research Fellows at University College London. During the two years that we lived in the United Kingdom, my parents worked with a number of outstanding scientists and physicians with whom I interacted at an early age. This rich exposure to medicine and science played a major role in shaping my interests which matured through high school and ultimately resulted in medical pursuit.


Creating a Patient Education Program in Tanzania

Written by Dr. Alexandra Miller '18

In large, bold type on page nine of my Swahili Medical Dictionary and Phrasebook (MJF Cooper 2006) is written Bora kinga kuliko tiba, which translates to “prevention is better than cure.” Although this phrase is common in English, we forget that for some diseases there is no cure. Cervical cancer is often diagnosed beyond a curable stage in resource-limited settings, despite being a preventable disease. Cervical cancer disproportionality affects women living in rural Tanzania. In, fact cervical cancer diagnosis is nearly ten times greater in rural Tanzania than in the United States.  


Written by Tendai Machingaidze, medical student studying in Russia who helped support UVMLCOM/WCHN global health participants in Zimbabwe

Having been an international student for the past seventeen years, I think about home a lot. In Shona, the concept of “kumusha” encompasses the ties that bind us to a specific portion of the earth, and the families and communities that formed us. Regardless of our physical location in the world, these roots determine who we are at our core, and who we will become.

Value in Providing for Others

Written by Dr. Bilal Khan, Pulmonary/Critical Care Specialist and Fellow in Sleep Medicine Norwalk Hospital, Connecticut

After completing my undergraduate degree in economics, I worked for J.P. Morgan Chase on the fast-track plan to Wall Street. During that time, I joined the volunteer fire department and became an Emergency Medical Technician, just as a hobby. But after a year, I noticed a striking difference between business and medicine: if you are good at something in business, you do not share that knowledge because it increases your value over your competition. But in healthcare, your value is based on what you are able to teach and provide for others, thereby improving their lives and positively impacting your community.

Grace’s Promise

Written by Grace Herrick, Founder of Grace's Promise Incorporated

My interest in science and sustainability began long before my introduction to global health. In junior high school, a working solar updraft tower I created won awards at Connecticut Science and Engineering Fair, and was subsequently featured on the local news for having captured the attention of a wide audience- most likely for its size and appearance, as it took up a sizable portion of my front yard! I continued working on sustainable energy projects through my high school career, during which I also periodically attended the Global Health Evening events.

Magical Mountain

Dr. Majid Sadigh, Trefz Family Endowed Chair in Global Health at WCHN and Director of Global Health at UVMLCOM

As a physician, I strive to diminish the expanse between myself and those who suffer. It is through enduring pain and suffering helps me better understand and advocate for those in need. The last seven hours of the climb in particular induce all manner of suffering: difficulty breathing, extreme exhaustion, bitter subfreezing temperatures, gusting dusty winds, crushing bone, joint, and chest pain, cramps, severe headache, sore throat, and nausea. These forces battle with you to send you back down to the bottom of the mountain. You fight just to keep your balance.

Time for Reflection: Global Health Careers

Written by Dr. Stephen Scholand, Site Director at Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam Global Health Program

When I made the decision to pursue medicine, I had thought of medical school as a narrow track. I had no idea about the universe of possibilities that would open up to me as a physician. My role model at the time was my father who worked in a traditional busy internal medicine practice. I saw him put his heart and soul into medicine, and it was very inspiring.

On Hosting Visiting Global Health Scholars

Written by Robyn Scatena, MD, Associate Director of Global Health at Norwalk Hospital

In the Norwalk Hospital Intensive Care Unit, we have the opportunity to host visiting global health scholars with some regularity. Many of our fellows and residents in the Intensive Care Unit have themselves participated in global health rotations. I asked our trainees to share some reflections on being global health “hosts.” They shared with me the many ways in which they have grown and benefitted.

Ethical Dilemmas in Global Health: Promoting Global Consciousness

Written by Dr. Stephen Winters, and Dr. Robert Kalyesubula, cofounder of the African Community Center for Social Sustainability, Nakaseke, Uganda

From a series of discussions about ethical dilemmas in global health, with responses from one global health leader in the Global South and one in the Global North. Please leave us your feedback in the comments section below, and send us ethical dilemmas you would like to see discussed.
Many students and faculty visiting other countries often deal with culture shock. How can the stress and frustration of culture shock be mitigated? What steps have you taken as a leader in global health to address the challenges of dealing with diverse participant backgrounds and expectations?

Ethical Dilemmas in Global Health: Strengthening Global Partnerships

Written by Stephen Winter, MD, Director of Global Health at Norwalk Hospital, and Robert Kalyesubula, MD, cofounder of the African Community Center for Social Sustainability, Nakaseke, Uganda

From a series of discussions about ethical dilemmas in global health, with responses from one global health leader in the Global South and one in the Global North. Please leave us your feedback in the comments section below, and send us ethical dilemmas you would like to see discussed.
There are many collaborations between the Global South and Global North, each with their own interests that must be met in order to make the collaboration fruitful. What are the key ingredients of a balanced collaboration, and what must both sides consider before setting one up?