By: Vivian Tan, Dalhousie Medical Student (Med 2)
This November, I had the opportunity to attend the three-day Canadian Conference for Global Health (CCGH) in Toronto. The conference brings together researchers, policymakers, students, practitioners and stakeholders from health and humanitarian sectors to share their wisdom on how the global health community can drive change in fragile environments.
There were experts from different regions around the world sharing their expertise and insight across a wide range of topics related to global health. Topics that I had a particular interest in included humanitarian development, infectious diseases, gender equality, maternal and infant health, politics of global health and health information systems. Being a part of conversations to improve the health of vulnerable and disadvantaged populations helped me develop a greater awareness of the social determinants of health and their effects on the causes, treatments and prevention of disease.
One of the highlights of the conference was a lunch talk with Helen Clark, the former Prime Minister of New Zealand. It was inspiring to hear her take on current healthcare issues particularly the advancement of women rights and the importance of intersectorial collaboration between humanitarian and developmental efforts for health.
Learning about different healthcare issues and potential solutions at CCGH allowed me to understand the impact of different systems, policies and delivery of services on patient care outcomes. This helps me recognize the strengths and weakness of our current system and become a better advocate for changes in health policy and health promotion in the future.
Other blog posts in this series:
Keisha Jefferies: Student Reflections on the Canadian Conference on Global Health