The public health “cultures” of Europe and the U.S. have diverged to some degree. Our European colleagues tend toward a more theoretical approach to training public health professionals, but have been very effective with on-the-ground systems like Medicins sans Frontieres. The U.S. trains and teaches in a very practical way, but implements programs in an idealistic and theoretical manner. The two approaches need more “cross-fertilization” to strengthen each approach, though most funding sources limit programs to a single national context or system.
Dr. Ricketts’s visiting professorship will allow us to cross boundaries and bring together faculty and students from UNC and the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sante Publique to build bridges among North Carolina, Europe and the Francophone parts of Africa through joint training, teaching and research projects. Through this GVP, we will begin to work together to understand financing and delivery of health care and preventative services, increasing knowledge and practice transfer.
PhD, professor of health policy and management and Director, North Carolina Rural Health Research Program and Program on Health Policy Analysis, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, brings superb policy and management skills and teaching experience to the new school.
He observes, “The people involved with this project are revolutionary in that the French have come to recognize the shortcomings of their public health training system and research infrastructure and have been tasked with adopting the best of the American model. The UNC side includes those who are open to new approaches and see the benefit of broadening their global constituencies to include largely ignored Francophone portions of the world.”
Partners include: UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and the École des hautes études en santé publique (EHESP).