Global Health Ideas

Finding global health solutions through innovation and technology

Over $250 Million for Global Health Education

The hype around a variety of global issues (microfinance, climate change, sustainability) continues to grow and based on the coverage this also seems to be true for global health. There must be something in the water this past year as there have been announcements by several universities about starting new global health divisions, departments or courses. Many schools of public health are leading the charge and are being backed up by real money in some cases. While there have been some universities that have had international health tracks, this set of developments is certainly a new phenomena that is widespread and not restricted to the typical large public health institutions (such as Hopkins). I hope that these schools are thinking outside of the typical public health box in how they develop their curricula, but that hope may be foolish on my part. Please find below a summary of recent news in this area, if I have missed any schools/programs I would be happy to add them. The amount of money and activity listed below is unprecedented for public/global health programs at the higher education level:

Real Money:
1) $110M for Emory Global Health, Jan 2007, & their $786M windfall, April 2007
2) $50M for UNC school of Global Public Health, Feb 2007
3) $30M for Duke Global Health, Sept 2006, Feb 2007
4) $30M with $100M more sought for UWashington Global Health, Sept 2006, Feb 2007
5) $4M for Oxford Global Health Sciences, April 2007

In addition to the above it looks like Harvard or Harvard affiliated clinicians will receive a total of $120M from Eli Lilly to tackle TB, read the story here. University of Washington wants to start a Health Metrics Institute and Emory will have an initial focus on vaccine and drug discovery, so there will be a large roll for measurement/evaluation and technology. There is a potential $324 million in funding for these new institutes, all announced mostly within the past 6 months. I did not have time to dig too much deeper into the list below, but you can see there is quite a bit of recent activity at many other schools:

-Colorado State Micro Rx, “MicroRx, a first-of-its-kind enterprise to speed the transition of life-saving research on infectious diseases from the academic world into the global marketplace.”

-Northwestern classes, “demand for global health education is up”

-Cornell global health minor & “Global health is a major focus of Cornell’s $1.3 billion campaign”, story

-U of Virginia public health/global health minor

-UCSF, Debas’ Bold Vision for the Future of Global Health

-DMU, new global health program

Before we get excited about all this movement, let’s not forget about things that plague many organizations: academic inertia, fiefdoms, turf wars, and major political battles. Some of these new initiatives may be revolutionary and some should be taken with a grain of salt. Without naming names, there are some universities with THREE or more, not one, but three centers for global health all at the same institution. These announcements, however, do indicate a very strong expanding interest in global health issues. In addition to this, a Feb 2007 commentary by Fitzhugh Mullan in the Journal of the American Medical Association calls for a sort of global health professional peace corps to tackle HIV/AIDS: “HIV/AIDS is “essentially the black death of the 21st century, killing on a massive scale and threatening to cripple economies and topple governments…the US should mobilize health workers ready to commit to working abroad in the long-term battle against HIV/AIDS.” It is a fascinating time for global health education, we will have to keep an eye on what happens with these investments.

Written by Aman

April 23, 2007 at 5:24 am

4 Responses

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  1. Great post, I can’t believe I just read it Aman. These numbers can again be culled by how much of the standard overhead each institution takes, and then how much is going towards things like education of the students, versus actual R&D, and ultimately implementation beyond the standard “trip to the developing world by students” Let’s get some pie charts going!


    May 4, 2011 at 6:01 pm

  2. [...] have blogged previously on the University based global health bubble (?) and I would like to see some hard numbers on global health jobs placement, impact on these new [...]

  3. [...] by Aman on July 17, 2008 There has been a major boom (dare I say, even a bubble?) in global health degree programs and organizations at universities in [...]

  4. [...] wide variety topics and also about challenges in global health. For example while there has been a very recent surge of interest in global health as a field or major at the university level, we wondered where all the new [...]

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