APHA 2019 Annual Conference: Recap

My name is Christa Cook and I am a Communications Committee Chair.

This year, I was able to attend the annual APHA conference for the first time! My schedule was packed full of sessions and meet-ups and it was all so worth it! I am an infectious disease epidemiologist, so my work is mainly focused on infection control and disease transmission, and I love it… but I’m also interested in other aspects of public health like chronic diseases and social and behavioral health. The conference allowed me to get a little taste of what’s going outside of my focused public health field. I highly recommend attending if your interests in public health are varied.

It’s also a great opportunity to network and meet other members of the sections or committees you’re involved in. I’ve been working with the International Health Section’s Communications Committee for over a year, and I was finally able to meet some of the people I’ve been talking to over the phone with at every month’s leadership call! I attended the business meeting for the section on Sunday and as each representative from committees gave their update, I was able to grasp just how much our section does. Here are a few highlights from each of the section’s committees:

  • The Policy and Advocacy Committee sponsored 3 policy statements, endorsed 2 policy statements, and reviewed/provided feedback to all 17 proposed policy statements.
  • The Communications Committee is now producing the section’s newsletter, the Section Connection. They continue to recruit bloggers for the section website and are active on all social media including Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
  • The Nominations Committee fielded a full slate of candidates for section leadership positions this spring. This year we elected Jirair Ratevosian, Samer Jabbour, and Rania Millerson as governing councilors. Carmyn Polk stepped up to run for secretary-elect, and will assume the secretary position in November 2021. Jay Nepal, Roberto Jorge Esteves and Ucheoma Nwaozuru were elected to the three open section councilor position. Caitlin Wolfe was elected to our section student liaison position. We hope you consider running for a position next year. The latest leadership roster is available here
  • The Membership Committee conducted an online membership survey in Spring and based on the feedback proposed a plan to more actively engage members.
  • The Global Health mentoring program saw an increase in the number of mentor/mentee pairings in 2019 compared to 2018. Applications for the 2020 cohort are now open.
  • The Program Committee created over 40 scientific sessions for this year’s annual meeting on emerging public health issues of international importance, including nine collaborative sessions with association components.

It was so inspiring to learn about the work that each of our committees does! I also was introduced to a few of the International Health section’s different working groups such as the breastfeeding working group, international abortion working group, and the climate health and working group. I wasn’t aware of these groups beforehand and found myself interested in learning more. I even connected one of the heads of the working group with a colleague at the conference because I knew her passion aligned with the group’s mission. 

APHA International Health Section’s Open House

After the business meeting, the section held their Open House. The Open House is an opportunity for all members to get to know the work the section does. This year our Assistant Social Media Manager, Jackie Bell, represented the Communications Committee. The format of the Open House was similar to speed dating where members and potential members would spend a few minutes at a table with each Committee and listen to what each Committee does and ask questions.

On top of attending the country’s largest gathering of public health professionals, you also get to explore a new city. This year, the conference was held in the wonderful and historical city of Philadelphia. I got to sneak away to see where the Declaration of Independence was signed as well as do a cheesy tourist bus ride to learn more about the other historical sites scattered around downtown! I learned SO much inside and outside of the walls of the conference center.

Annual Awards Ceremony and Networking Event

On Tuesday night, I was able to briefly attend the section’s annual Awards Ceremony and Networking event. During this event, section members are able to meet other section members as well as section leaders. It was a great opportunity to learn more about the wonderful global health work our members do. During that time, they also presented awards to people I’d consider to be global health heroes.  To learn more about this year’s awardees, click here.

To summarize the conference events, I’ve found some quick links for both attendees and those who were unable to attend this year. See below:

For attendees:

  • Check out pictures from the fun-filled week right here! Try to find yourself if you attended!
  • Did you attend and forget to file for continuing education credits? Check here for instructions on how to obtain your credits.
  • Did you learn the APHA dance and want to teach others at your workplace? Find the youtube video here!
  • Did you attend and want to share about the conference? Comment on the blog post below or find us on our social media platforms. We may spotlight your experience this month!

For those wanting a recap:

  • The theme of this year’s conference was “Creating the Healthiest Nation: For Science. For Action. For Health”. Read more about what that means in the link above.
  • Some of the best highlights from the conference can be found here on APHA TV! These quick clips can give you a taste of some of the biggest speakers that presented.
  • The annual meeting had many diverse workshops the Saturday before the conference. See a listing of the different options that were available this year here.
  • If you’re interested in reading other’s perspectives about sessions at the conference, check out the blog here. You can also cruise APHA’s social media channels to see what others retweeted or posted about the conference!
  • The conference also had a neat Social Media Lab! Check out the link to see what was available for attendees. This was super beneficial for those wanting to revamp their organization’s social media platforms to increase their public health presence. 
  • Still want more? You can purchase sessions like the opening, general and closing sessions from APHA Live. If you’re a member, it’s half price! 

I hope I’ve convinced you to attend next year’s event in San Francisco!

Now accepting applications for the IH Section’s Global Health Mentoring Program!

The Global Health Mentoring Program is pleased to announce the opening of applications for the 2020 cohort, which runs January 2020 – September 2020.

Please visit the link below to learn more about the Mentoring Program and how to apply.

https://aphaih.org/global-health-mentoring-program/

For any questions please email ih.gh.mentoring@gmail.com 

Brianne Riggin-Pathak and Theresa Majeski
IH Section Mentoring Committee Co-Chairs

Congratulations to the 2019 APHA International Health Section Award Winners!

This year, we had a good pool of candidates for the various awards offered by our Section. Congratulations to our colleagues whose outstanding accomplishments in international health are being recognized by our Section this year.

1. Carl Taylor Lifetime Achievement Award in International Health — Dr. Russell Morgan

2. Mid-Career Achievement Award in International Health — Dr. Jirair Ratevosian

3. Gordon-Wyon Award for Community-Oriented Public Health, Epidemiology and Practice – Dr.  MaryAnne Mercer

4. Distinguished Section Service Award – Ms. Jean Armas

The Awards Committee encourages all to nominate a colleague and/or be willing to be nominated next year. To find out more information about nominating a colleague or to view a list of past award winners, please visit the IH Section’s Awards webpage.

We would also like to congratulate this year’s top-scoring Early Career Professional abstract, Dr Bilikisu Reni Elewonibi. Dr Elewonibi presented her abstract, entitled “Pregnancy loss in Urban Tanzania: Patterns and Predictors,” at this year’s conference. Every year the IH section awards two $500 scholarships to top scoring abstracts submitted by IH Early Career Professionals. Don’t forget to submit your abstract to next year’s meeting in San Francisco!

Welcome to Philadelphia! #APHA2019 #globalhealth #internationalhealth

We hope to see you at any of our events here in Philadelphia. Below are a few ways you can meet us:

IH Section Main Events:

Sunday November 3, 2019, 2:00 to 2:50 PM
Business Meeting, Room 115C PCC

Sunday November 3, 2019, 3:00 to 4:30 PM
Open House followed by Membership Meeting

Tuesday November 5, 2019, 6:30 to 9:00 PM
Networking and Awards Reception

Wednesday November 6, 2019, 12:30 to 2:00 PM
International Health Luncheon (advance ticket purchase required: https://show.jspargo.com/apha19/Registration/login.aspx)

——

Working Group Events:

Sunday, November 3, 2019 9 to 10:15 AM
Global Maternal and Child Health Network Business Meeting

Sunday, November 3, 2019, 9 to 10:30 AM
International Health Advocacy and Policy Committee Business Meeting

Sunday, November 3, 2019, 12 to 1:30 PM
International Abortion Working Group Business Meeting, Room 108A PCC

Monday, November 4, 2019, 6 to 7:00 PM
Health Systems Strengthening Working Group Meeting

Monday, November 4, 2019, 6:30 to 8:00 PM
Climate Change and Health Working Group, Open House

Monday, November 4, 2019, 6:30 to 8:00 PM
Palestine Health Justice Working Group Meeting

Location information for the above events as well as a list of our our entire program can be found here: https://apha.confex.com/apha/2019/meetingapp.cgi/Program/1863

All members are welcome to attend the IH Section Business and Membership meetings. At the Business meeting, we do use a soft version of Robert’s Rules of order to guide meetings. We use this to help visitors feel comfortable knowing how to participate and how to bring up items or questions.

Please visit the International Welcome Desk next to the APHA Meeting Registration Area to let us know you arrived and ask any questions. Also, visit us at the International Health Section booth located in the Public Health Expo. We would enjoy telling you about our Section benefits and learning from you what would be meaningful to you as an IH Section member in the future.

Please do not hesitate to contact us at ihsection.communications@gmail.com   if you have any questions or comments. See you soon!


American Public Health Association
International Health Section
ihsection.communications@gmail.com
www.aphaih.org

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CBPHC Pre-Conference – How to Achieve Real Social Change: Opportunities and Challenges for Effective Collaboration and Partnership in Community Based Primary Health Care (CBPHC), 11/2

Community Based Primary Health Care (CBPHC) Pre-Conference:
How to Achieve Real Social Change: Opportunities and Challenges for Effective Collaboration and Partnership in Community Based Primary Health Care (CBPHC)

November 2nd from 8 AM to 5 PM
Pennsylvania Convention Center, 1101 Arch Street, Room# 120B

Are you interested in best practices for collaboration and effective partnership for social change in global health?

The CBPHC Pre-Conference is an opportunity participate with international and national experts, CHWs, program planners, policy-makers, CHW advocates, donors, and others interested in CBPHC to define effective partnering practices and collaboration strategies that support CBPHC and social change.

Dr. Carl Taylor, CBPHC pioneer, wrote in his last publication, “Real social change occurs when officials and people with relevant knowledge and resources come together with communities in joint action around mutual priorities.” Effective CBPHC is grounded in collaboration and partnering practices to achieve social change.

Last year, the Astana Declaration at the Global Conference on Primary Health Care re-affirmed the critical role that primary health care (PHC) plays to ensure that everyone everywhere is able to enjoy the highest standard of health (WHO, 2018). While PHC approach is a foundational building block for Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and reaching health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), achieving these stretch goals requires effective partnerships and collaboration in global practice.

This pre-conference sponsored by the Community-Based Primary Health Care (CBPHC) working group of the International Health Section will explore the role partnering practices play in global health. We will address the challenges inherent in diverse partnerships including power imbalances and potential tensions between community, donors, government, individuals, civil society, NGOs and universities. This participatory workshop will bring together international and national experts, CHWs, program planners, policy-makers, CHW advocates, donors, and others interested in CBPHC to define effective partnering practices and collaboration strategies that support CBPHC and social change.

Workshop Objectives:
1) Describe how four-way partnerships for sustainability function effectively to achieve universal health coverage (including the roles community, government, donors, and civil society, NGOs and Universities play)
2) Describe the potential tensions and power-privilege dynamics in diverse partnerships
3) Explain elements of effective partnering practices that support equitable collaboration

Keynotes include:

“An Ethical Lens on Collaboration in Global Practice” Dr. Jim Lavery, the Hilton Chair for Global Ethics, of Emory University
“Tools for Creating and Measuring Collaboration Globally” Dr. Nina Wallerstein, Director of the UNM Center for Participatory Research

You will be able to participate in working group discussions, and share your best practices for global health and collaboration! Cost of the workshop is $25 for students, and $35 for non-students!

TO REGISTER: Go to APHA Annual Meeting Workshops or register at APHA EventBrite

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Email the CBPHC Working Group at cbphcworkgroup@gmail.com

Hope you can come!

Laura Chanchien Parajon, MD, MPH
Chair of the CBPHC Working Group