Department Newsletter - July 2017

News MMSc-GHD Publications Invited Presentations


Dr. Nardell promoted to Professor

The Department announces the promotion of Ed Nardell, MD, to Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine. Dr. Nardell is a major contributor to efforts to treat and control tuberculosis. He joined the Program in Infectious Disease and Social Change in 2002 and has served as Senior TB Control Specialist, guiding our faculty in Peru and Russia to improve multidrug-resistant tuberculosis treatment outcomes, expand access to treatment, and prevent the transmission of MDRTB among vulnerable communities. To read the complete story, please visit our website.

Dr. Patel receives Austin College Posey Leadership Award

Austin College welcomed Vikram Patel, MBBS, PhD, to campus on March 28, 2017 and to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas on March 29, 2017. During his visit, Dr. Patel was honored with the 2017 Austin College Posey Leadership Award. The Posey Leadership Award honors an outstanding individual who has demonstrated the principles of servant leadership. (photo credit: Austin College)

Dr. Franke receives Parker B. Francis Jo Rae Wright Award for Science Excellence

Congratulations to Molly Franke, SD, assistant professor on Global Health and Social Medicine for receiving the Parker B. Francis Jo Rae Wright Award for Science Excellence. This annual award is given to a recent graduate of the PBF Fellowship Program whose research shows exceptional creativity and promise and who has demonstrated outstanding mentoring and professional leadership qualities.

Publication named as part of the Change the World, One Article at a Time initiative

The editors-in-chief of Springer Nature journals from across disciplines were asked to select the scientific findings published in 2016 that they believed could have the greatest impact on society's most pressing problems. Drs. Sachin Atre and Megan Murray's publication, Management and control of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB): Addressing policy needs for India, was chosen by Spinger Nature's, "Change the World, One Article at a Time" initiative as part of the 180 outstanding articles.To read this article and any of the other articles, please use this link.

Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at HMS and The Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at WHO talk about an Initiative

In May, faculty from the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine and other Harvard schools met with Dr. Shekhar Saxena, director of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at WHO. These discussions at the meeting have lead to the emergence of an initiative on mental health and sustainable development (led by Dr. Vikram Patel, Dr. Anne Becker, and Dr. Giuseppe Raviola) with planned events in the Department for faculty and students to share their work and ideas in September and a similar University-wide open day in November. Watch for more details.


Welcome to the MMSc-GHD Class of 2019!


Research interests: Hasna's MMSc-GHD research will focus on key factors to design facilities to promote healthy aging in developing countries including evidence-based design challenges to tackle functional decline, dependence and dementia with the aim of designing world-class Age-Defying Elderly Healthcare centers.

Hasna Alam, MHM

Hasna is an EDAC certified manager with a master’s degree in hospital management and a former fellow of American College of Healthcare Executives. She has performed feasibility analysis, design, workflow analysis, and developed operation and financial models for medium and large hospital projects. She seeks to apply evidence-based design methodology to healthcare buildings to improve the health and well-being of patients, family and staff.

Hamda Alsuwaidi

Hamda is a clinical quality officer from the United Arab Emirates. She graduated from the University of Sharjah with a degree in health services administration. She then joined the Dubai Health Authority as a senior clinical quality officer, playing a vital role in serving patients and the community by improving the quality and safety of diagnostic medicine. Hamda is one of the founders of the United Arab Emirates Youth Diabetes Society, a group dedicated to improving awareness and knowledge about the preventive methods and early detection of diabetes. Research interests: Hamda's MMSc-GHD research will focus on one of the following topics: sexually transmitted diseases (which currently have limited education and awareness options in the UAE), early detection and prevention of diabetes, or autoimmune diseases in the UAE.

Sheriff Bangura

Sheriff works for Partners In Health–Sierra Leone as the Director of Pharmacy and Strategic Advisor for Supply Chain. He works on emergency response and health systems strengthening in one of the country’s poorest districts, leading programs that have improved access and availability of essential drugs and medical supplies for maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS, and TB. Before joining PIH, he worked as the Director of Pharmacy at the Princess Christian Maternity Hospital, Sierra Leone’s only tertiary maternity referral center. He aspires to work on policies and systems that guarantee access to essential drugs to vulnerable populations in Sierra Leone. Research interests: Sheriff is considering research on these topics for his MMSc-GHD thesis: assessment of ARV stock-outs, reporting rates, and reporting quality at the national, district, and facility levels using secondary analysis of logistic management information system data; or an investigation of the role of community pharmacies in the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone by assessing their impact on service delivery, management of suspected cases, and referrals.

Daniel Dupervil, MD

Daniel is a Haitian physician. After his graduation from the Latin American School of Medicine in Cuba, he returned to his hometown of Les Cayes for his social service at Hôpital Immaculée Conception des Cayes. He also taught medical pathology at the National School of Nursing in Haiti. In 2012, after his pediatrics residency in Cuba, he again returned to his home town. Since 2013, he has worked at the Hôpital Universitaire de Mirebalais, a tertiary teaching hospital run by Partners In Health/Zanmi Lasante, where he treated neonates and children and contributed to training pediatric residents. He was a member of the infection control committee. He is particularly interested in children’s health and infectious diseases. Research interests: Daniel's MMSc-GHD research will focus on treatment of neonates in resource-poor environments like Haiti.

Chenjezo Grant Gonani

Chenjezo is a Malawian mental health practitioner working with the Ministry of Health in Neno district since 2012. He currently serves as a district coordinator for non-communicable Diseases (NCD) and mental health. Working with partners and leveraging their resources, Chenjezo has been leading a program of decentralizing mental health and NCD services into primary care by scaling up a model of integrated mental health, NCD, and HIV services, which allows general clinicians providing HIV, NCD, and mental health services as “one stop care” in all primary care level. Research interests: Chenjezo's aspirations include improving access of quality mental health services in rural Malawi, and his MMSc-GHD research will focus on mental health quality.

Nadeem Kasmani, MD

KasmaniNadeem.jpg Nadeem Kasmani Nadeem Kasmani, MD* Nadeem received his medical degree from Oman Medical College, Sohar in the Sultanate of Oman, in 2014. During his internship in Dubai Health Authority hospitals, he joined the Introduction to Clinical Research Training Program at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Kasmani is a former member of the International Federation of Medical Students Association and fundraising officer at World Young Doctors Organization. He now works closely with medical students in colleges within UAE and Oman as well as with young doctors as part of an ongoing mission to educate doctors who are a healthy and positive part of the workforce. Research interests: Nadeem will select one of the following topics for his MMSc-GHD research: understanding the role of traditional healers in management of psychiatric illness in UAE; exploring reasons for low antenatal checkups in India; or understanding the factors leasing to an increase in Caesarean births in India.

David Jungpa Lee

David grew up in Los Angeles as the son of a pastor who provides spiritual leadership/counseling for local Korean immigrants. Desiring to increase healthcare access for immigrant/refugee communities, David received a BA in Public Health at UC Berkeley and is currently pursuing an MD at Harvard Medical School, where he worked with a psychiatrist on a novel group-based mental health intervention for depressed Chinese immigrants. David also trained in community health in India, where he participated in various service projects for urban slums in New Delhi. David hopes to become a physician-researcher who combines quantitative and qualitative methods to deliver creative and effective healthcare to low-resourced communities in the U.S. and abroad. Research interests: David's research interests are in non-communicable disease (possibly among at-risk HIV patients) and cost-effectiveness/decision analysis methods.

Christian Ntizimira, MD

Christian is a physician and the head of the advocacy and research department of Rwanda Palliative Care & Hospice Organisation. As director of Kibagabaga District Hospital, Dr. Ntizimira contributed to the implementation of the national policy of palliative care that became a model of care in Rwanda. Dr. Ntizimira pioneered integration of end-of-life care into health services rendered to Rwandan patients with chronic illnesses in acute care and community settings. Dr. Ntizimira is currently a researcher collaborator at Harvard Global Equity Initiative–Lancet Commission on Global Access to Pain Control and Palliative Care. Research interests: For his MMSc-GHD research, Christian will work with Eric Krakauer, MD, PhD on palliative care in Rwanda.

Thierry Nyatanyi, MD, MPH

Thierry served as the head of division for epidemic surveillance and response at the Rwanda Biomedical Center/Ministry of Health, where he implemented national efforts for preparedness and response to epidemic-prone diseases. In addition, he coordinated the Rwanda-field epidemiology program, was Rwanda’s point person for international health regulations and was principal investigator for the CDC-funded avian influenza preparedness and response program. He currently works with the USAID EPT2 One Health Workforce project as the Africa technical lead to support the development of a public health workforce with the technical skills to adapt and respond to emerging infectious disease threats. Research interests: Thierry's research in the MMSc-GHD program will focus on addressing infectious disease threats.

Lisa Parvin, MS*

Lisa has a MS in Biotechnology from Georgetown University and has worked as a researcher in population-based studies at the University of British Columbia for several years. Due to her multidisciplinary background, Lisa is in a unique position to look at complex global health issues through diverse perspectives and can come up with creative solutions in a true trans-disciplinary fashion. Research interests: Lisa intends to work for equitable access to healthcare and to reduce infectious disease burden among vulnerable communities of Bangladesh through research on equitable access to routine vaccination programs among vulnerable children.

Gloria Prado Pino, MD

Gloria Prado Pino is a physician from the Juan N. Corpas School of Medicine in Bogotá, Colombia, with expertise in care of critically ill patients. In 2010, she became a member of the first telemedicine intensive care unit in Colombia, and she has been working as medical coordinator of the ICU Respirar S.A.S. in the state of Chocó, Colombia since July 2014. Dr. Prado Pino also works as a research assistant for the Natural Products Research Group of the Technological University of Chocó; part of her work focuses on assessing the antiparasitic properties of plants from the biodiverse Pacific region of Colombia. Research interests: Gloria is considering two topics for her MMSc-GHD research: an assessment of plants with promissory antiprotozoal activity from Chocó’s flora and that may provide treatments against parasites such as such as Chagas and Leishmaniasis; or strategies to address domestic violence in Chocó through policy or programmatic interventions.

Maxi Raymonville, MD

Maxi is executive director and chairman of the Board of Haiti’s University Hospital Mirebalais. An obstetrician gynecologist (OB/GYN) by training, he has worked with Partners In Health/Zanmi Lasante (PIH/ZL) for more than 23 years across functions including clinical service, medical education, research and governance. His extensive efforts within PIH/ZL have earned Dr. Raymonville recognition across the global health community. In 2004 he was awarded the Thomas J. White prize for his extraordinary work expanding ZL’s HIV treatment in Haiti. Dr. Raymonville’s areas of interest include decreasing maternal mortality, increasing family planning rates, and preventing, detecting and treating cervical cancer. Research interests: Maxi's MMSc-GHD research will address one of the following topics: maternal and child health, particularly an investigation of the gaps in care; information systems research on technological and communicative tools such as electronic medical records; or a study of the financing of primary health care in resource-poor settings.

Joseph M. Sieka, MD

Joseph grew up in Liberia, graduating from medical school in 2006. Appointed county health officer of River Gee Health System in 2009, he led the planning, implementing, and supervising of all county health services, he also provided hospital-based clinical care. After witnessing the devastation caused by the Ebola virus disease crisis, Dr. Sieka joined the emerging health care leaders who are committed to building a resilient health care system. Research interests: Joseph's MMSc–GHD research will focus part of a larger cross-sectional social epidemiological serosurvey of Ebola survivors in a defined geographic cluster.

Aliyu Zakayo, MBBS

Aliyu graduated from the University of Jos' Faculty of Medical Sciences and worked for Nigeria's government as a clinician and public health analyst. His work exposed him to the plight of more than two million internally displaced people because of insurgent violence and the hardship they face in accessing healthcare. In 2015, he started the non-profit health intervention group, Livaly. In partnership with the government, Livaly aims to deliver care to displaced and impoverished populations in a feasible and ethical fashion while employing robust and competitive analytics to drive decisions. Research interests: Aliyu will choose one of the following topics for his MMSc-GHD research: assessment of the impact of poverty on the prevalence of Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa; a qualitative study of physical and psychosocial needs in Maiduguri IDP Camps in North-East Nigeria; or health education and quality of life assessment among diabetic patients in Gombe, Yola and Maiduguri.


Vikram Patel

  • A meeting was hosted in May  for faculty from the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine and other schools of Harvard to interact with Dr. Shekhar Saxena, director of the Department of Mental Health at WHO. These discussions have led to the emergence of an initiative on mental health and sustainable development (led by Vikram Patel, Anne Becker, and Bepi Raviola) with planned events in the department for faculty and students to share their work and ideas in September and a similar University wide open day in November. Watch out for more details.
  • Myron Belfer Oration (Boston Childrens’ May); Keynote at CANWACH (Canadian Alliance for Maternal, Child and Adolescent Health) conference on global adolescent health (Ottawa, May); and keynote at International Conference on Eating Disorders (Prague, June).

Sabine Hildebrandt

  • Anatomie im Nationalsozialismus Politik, Wissenschaft und Ethik“ Wissenschaftshistorisches Seminar Leopoldina (February 7, 2017) in Halle/Germany.
  • Anatomie im Nationalsozialismus Politik, Wissenschaft und Ethik“ Institut fuer Geschichte der Medizin/ Institut für Anatomie und Zellbiologie Justus-Liebig-Universität Giessen (February 9, 2017) in Germany.
  • Invited panel presentation, “Human Tissues and Body Parts from the National Socialist Era” on final panel “To Use or Not to Use” of the conference “Medical Ethics in the 70 Years after the Nuremberg Code, 1947 to the Present” (March 3, 2017) at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria.
  • Second Scholarly Workshop on Medicine and the Holocaust, Western Galilee, Israel. Session chair, final panel and presentation (together with Dr. Gabriele Czarnwoski, Graz, Austria): “Collaborative Research in Fetography during National Socialism: The Experiments of Gynecologist Karl Ehrhardt and Anatomist Alfred Pischinger” (May 7-11, 2017).
  • Special symposium Yad Vashem: “The remains of Jewish martyrs who were victims of Nazi medical crimes: the case of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute of Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics: Berlin-Dahlem.” Invited presentation: “Ethical Transgressions on the Bodies of Deceased Victims" of the National Socialist Regime by German and Austrian Universities and Research Institutes” (May 14, 2017)


  • M. Jordans, S. Rathod, A. Fekadu, G. Medhin, F. Kigozi, B. Kohrt, N. Luitel, I. Petersen, R. Shidhaye, J. Ssebunnya, V. Patel and C. Lund. Suicidal ideation and behaviour among community and health care seeking populations in five low- and middle-income countries: a cross-sectional study. Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences, page 1 of 10. © Cambridge University Press 2017 doi:10.1017/S2045796017000038 [link]
  • D. Nambiar, J. Razzak, K. Afsana, A.M. Adams, A.Hasa, D. Mohan, V. Patel. Mental illness and injuries: emerging health challenges of ubanisation in South Asia. BMJ 2017; 357 doi: 10.1136/bmj.1126. [link]J. Naslund, K. Aschbrenner, R. Araya, L. Marsch, J. Unützer, V. Patel, S. Bartels. Digital technology for treating and preventing mental disorders in low-income and middle-income countries; a narrative review of the literature. Lancet psychiatry 2017. April 19, 2017. [link]
  • Vikram Patel. Talking sensibly about depression. PLOS Medicine. [link]
  • D. Singla, B. Kohrt, L. Murray, A.Anand, B. Chorpita, and V. Patel. Psychological Treatments for the World: Lesson from Low- and Middle-Income Countries. [link]
  • Hildebrandt S, Villiez Av, Seidelman WE. Posthumous testimony for Dr. Leo Gross and his family: the restoration of the ‘lost’ biography of a physician victim of the Holocaust, Medizinhistorisches Journal, 4:295-326, 2016
  • Hildebrandt S, Czarnowski G. Alfred Pischinger (1899-1983): An Austrian Career in Anatomy Continuing Through National Socialism to Postwar Leadership, Annals of Anatomy, 211:104-113, 2017
  • Cornwall J., Winkelmann A., Hildebrandt S. Letters to the editor: Cadaver exome sequencing for teaching first-year-medical students. JAMA 316:102-103, 2016
  • Hildebrandt S. Remembering the victims of abusive practice in anatomy: the example of Nazi Germany. In: Strkalj G, Pather N.: Commemoration and Memorials in Anatomy. World Scientific, 2017
  • Hildebrandt S, Czarnowski G. Research on the boundary between life and death: coercive experiments on pregnant women and their fetuses during National Socialism. In: Weindling PJ (ed.): From clinic to concentration camp. Reassessing Nazi medical and racial research, 1933-1945. London: Routledge. 2017
  • Kahn PA, Champney TH, Hildebrandt S. Letter to the editor: The incompatibility of the use of unclaimed bodies with ethical anatomical education in the United States. Anatomical Sciences Education 10:200-201, 2017
  • Silverstein, Jason. The Nonsensical GOP War on Maternity Care. Vice. [link]
  • Silverstein, Jason. How Trump's FDA Pick Will Shred the Healthcare Safety Net. Vice. [link]
  • Silverstein, Jason. Under Trumpcare, 51 Million Americans Would Be Uninsured by 2026. Vice. [link]

Colleagues from the DGHSM and DGHE, in collaboration with the non-profit Possible and the Ministry of Health of Nepal, wrote the following blogs:

  • Two Years on: When Democracy and Tectonics COllide, Lancet Global Health Blog [link]
  • To Survive,healthcare systems need small data to be adaptive [link]

And the following papers:

  • Raut A, Yarbrough Y, Singh V, Gauchan B,Citrin D, Verma V, Hawley J, Schwarz D, Harsha A, Shrestha B, Schwarz R,Adhikari M, Maru D. 2017. Design and implementation ofan affordable,public sector electronic medical record in rural Nepal. 2017. Journalof Innovations in Healthcare Informatics, 24(2):001–010. [link]
  • Acharya B, Maru D, Schwarz R, CitrinD, Tenpa J, Hirachan S, Basnet M, Thapa P, Swar S, Halliday S, Kohrt B, LuitelNP, Hung E, Gauchan B, Pokharel R, Ekstrand M. 2017. Partnerships in mental healthcare service delivery in low-resource settings: developing an innovative network in rural Nepal. Global Health 13 (1). PMID: 228086925. [link]

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