Medicine is More than Science

As I’ve written about in several previous posts, I spent the year before medical school in India studying and researching the inner workings of the sex trafficking industry. I always anticipated that to be a well-rounded physician in the future, it would be unarguably important to bring forth a diverse array of experiences to every patient encounter, and I was confident that the time I spent with women who were survivors of trafficking would teach me more about being human than any of my previous journeys. In my essay recently published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, I talk about how this could not be more true.

Ranking States on the Well-Being of the Undocumented

State Rankings for Immigrant Well-Being

A new report released by the University of California Global Health Institute and the UCLA Blum Center on Poverty and Health in Latin America assesses the extent to which states respect the rights and protect the well-being of undocumented immigrants. This report is the first organized analysis of an immensely important human rights issue in this country, and will hopefully be leveraged to create more equitable policies across the nation.

The Global Health Watch

The Global Health Watch

I have been holding on to an idea for a few years now: that student volunteers in global health are not recognizing their full potential. One of the most important experiences I had in my past work was sitting down with individuals and listening to their stories. Through this, I became passionate about journalism and photography– my first such project resulted in my work on Project Through Their Eyes.

I have since began the development of a non-profit, The Global Health Watch, that will utilize volunteers who work abroad as storytellers for the poor and marginalized. This will serve a dual function of increasing accountability on the work of NGOs in global health, and it will also promote a bidirectional dialogue that is often missing from development projects. I recently presented some of the initial stages of this at the Unite for Sight global health conference at Yale. More to come very soon.

If you are a journalist, documentary filmmaker, or have expertise in global health program evaluation and are interested in becoming involved, please message me. 

Ethics of International Healthcare System Development

JOE Editors

I’m very excited to share that I have been selected as one of the editorial fellows of the AMA Journal of Ethics this year. I just returned from the AMA headquarters in Chicago where we had a gathering of all the 13 editors to discuss our individual theme topics for the journal. Each month of the year, starting from September 2015 to September 2016, we will be publishing one issue. My theme will be on the topic of international healthcare systems. I’ll be reaching out to experts in the field to solicit their commentary on a number of ethics cases related to the theme.

Ebola, Access to Medicines, and the Health Impact Fund

Ebola HIF paper

I am excited to share my latest article in the Journal of Global Health with Dr. Thomas Pogge, one of my professors/mentors and the co-founder of the Health Impact Fund (HIF). The HIF is a project that will certainly revolutionize the pharmaceutical industry and make better use of development aid money in such a way that the poor truly benefit from direct access to vaccines and medications at no cost to them. We look into Ebola and how the current global drug innovation model leaves us ill prepared to deal with outbreaks primarily affecting the poor. We then examine current solutions to this dilemma, including the role of the HIF.

Leapfrogging: The Way Forward for Developing Health Systems

Health Systems Leapfrogging

I really liked this white paper from the Boston Consulting Group and the World Economic Forum on how emerging economies can build effective health systems through “leapfrogging,” or essentially utilizing existing technology and infrastructure from developed economies in a way that avoids the once needed development cost of creating said resources. This is an area of academic interest that I will be studying in far more depth in the next year.