TRANSFORMATIVE LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT
To continue to grow and thrive, Haiti's medical system needs more than great doctors--it needs great leaders. EqualHealth works with the next generation of health professionals in Haiti and around the world to create a cadre of informed and thoughtful leaders who are equipped to transform the system from within.
No matter the setting, an understanding of the social determinants of health is vital to effective health care delivery. This is all the more true for the future health professionals from both high- and low-resource countries who plan to work with the underserved.
In settings like Haiti, the poorest and sickest country in the Western Hemisphere, the effective practice of medicine is impossible without an understanding of the ways that social, political, historical, cultural, and economic factors have shaped the health of its people. During our years of work in Haiti, we have seen a lack of this understanding lead to a misuse of resources, and to ineffective health care interventions that contribute to avoidable suffering and death.
In July 2013, EqualHealth launched its first annual Social Medicine Course, bringing together Haitian and international medical students for a three-week immersion course. Incorporating clinical teaching, student presentations and discussions, patient interviews, and field visits, the inaugural course was described as “a simply unforgettable, wonderful experience which encourages reflection and growth.” We expanded the course to include nursing and other allied health profession students in 2014 & 2015, fostering a more diverse set of perspectives in the classroom and furthering our core value of interdisciplinary collaboration.
The Fellowship Program provides a cadre of Haiti's most promising young physicians with a high-yield, one-year training experience that will prepare them to be effective leaders in the field of medical education. These Fellows will play an important role in achieving EqualHealth's long term vision of a Haitian medical education system that is both high-quality and self-sustaining.