Adapting to Globalization: Transforming Public Health Training with a Global Health Certification


Devdiscourse News DeskDevdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 02-06-2024 14:55 IST | Created: 02-06-2024 14:55 IST
Adapting to Globalization: Transforming Public Health Training with a Global Health Certification
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A study in Bogomolets National Medical University, Kyiv, Ukraine State Scientific Institution "Scientific and Practical Center for Preventive and Clinical Medicine" of the State Affairs Administration, Kyiv, Ukraine, researchers Tatyana S. Gruzeva, Natalia V. Grechishkina, Anna V. Inshakova, Elena M. Mashkina, and Yaroslava S. Demidenko explored the development and importance of a modern certification program designed for the continuous professional development of public health professionals. The goal is to equip these professionals with the necessary skills and knowledge to address health challenges brought about by globalization.

Implications for Public Health Training

The study utilized various research methods, including bibliosemantic, informational-analytical, medical-statistical, and sociological techniques, along with content analysis. It focused on analyzing the core competencies needed for public health professionals, as defined by the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER) and the higher education standard for specialty "Public Health" at the master's level. Additionally, the research examined existing certification programs on global health and conducted surveys to understand the priority topics and preferred learning methods among public health professionals.

Key Findings

The findings highlight that global health issues are crucial in developing the competencies of public health professionals. The study shows that continuous professional development is essential, with 38.4 percent of respondents from disease control and prevention centers emphasizing the need to expand knowledge in global health. Preferred methods of education among professionals include webinars 62.2 percent and online learning 60.4 percent.

The "Global Health" certification program developed in this study allocates 26.7 percent of its hours to lectures, 33.3 percent to practical classes, and 40 percent to self-directed work. The program is structured into two modules covering eight topics that address the impact of globalization on health and the analysis of global health indicators.

Educational Context

The introduction of this certification program aligns with broader educational requirements and professional development standards. The World Health Organization (WHO) emphasizes the need for increased investment in health workforce development and continuous professional education. WHO's global strategy on human resources for health and various European health initiatives support the creation of such educational programs.

Importance of Global Health Competencies

Global health competencies are vital for public health professionals to analyze and respond to health challenges. These competencies, as outlined by ASPHER, include the ability to assess, interpret, compare, and forecast key public health indicators; prioritize and evaluate public health needs; develop and implement strategies and interventions to enhance population health; and analyze the impact of various determinants on health.

Curriculum Content

The curriculum of the "Global Health" certification program is comprehensive and includes topics such as the burden of non-communicable and communicable diseases, mental health, maternal and child health, demographic trends, health inequities, environmental health challenges, and health system responses to globalization. Each topic is designed to provide in-depth knowledge and practical skills relevant to current global health issues.

Relevance and Demand

The program is highly relevant given the global interconnectedness and the subsequent health challenges. The findings from the surveys show a clear demand for such a program, with many professionals seeking flexible learning options like online and hybrid formats. The program's content and structure are informed by existing international programs and tailored to meet the specific needs of Ukrainian health professionals.

Strategic Development and Future Research Directions

The development of the "Global Health" certification program is a strategic response to the evolving needs of public health professionals. It aligns with international educational standards and addresses the unique health challenges posed by globalization. The program is structured to enhance the professional competencies of public health specialists, ensuring they are well-equipped to tackle global health issues effectively.

Further research is needed to explore the comprehensive impact of globalization on population health and to assess the satisfaction and effectiveness of the certification program among its participants. Continuous updates and improvements to the program will be necessary to keep pace with the rapidly changing global health landscape.

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