Working Group on Tropical Medicine and Global Health Training

Tropical Medicine remains a widely used as a term for a number of training of different levels (master, diploma, specialisation) offered at Tropical and Public Health Institutes. Classical curricula encompassed Tropical Diseases and Travel Medicine. Over the recent years, there has been a shift toward educational programs, incorporating and considering wider viewpoints and courses in Global Health, Management, One Health, and Planetary Health.

In reality, very few countries in the European Region offer a structured and recognized specialization in Tropical Medicine/Global Health. This Working Group was formed due to the need for a central body in the European Region to monitor these trends and provide a voice and platform for medical students and practitioners with an interest in specializing in Tropical Medicine and/or Global Health.

Aim

To advocate for and support cohesion and communication surrounding undergraduate and postgraduate Tropical Medicine and Global Health -related training in the European Region, as well as the development and expansion of programmes offered.

Objectives

  • To provide an overview of postgraduate trainings in Global Health and Tropical Medicine in the European Region
  • To survey undergraduate medical students on their perspectives and knowledge surrounding Global Health and Tropical Medicine in the European Region
  • To link with Trop Ed and other courses in the European Region
  • To advocate for expanded blended learning, e-learning, and tele-medicine opportunities
  • To spark discussion surrounding:
    a. Definitions of Tropical Medicine topics, values, goals in today’s clinical practice and research
    b. Shifting focus in medical education: travellers health, health of population in tourist areas, migrant and refugee health

Members

Co-Lead

Rosemary James 

Rosemary James is an academic junior doctor for NHS England. She is a board member of FESTMIH, and co-lead for the Working Group on Tropical Medicine and Global Health Training. She also serves as the coordinator for the Lancet Migration European Regional Hub, and consults for the World Health Organization. 

Rosemary graduated from NUI Galway School of Medicine in 2021. She holds an MSc Global Health from Maastricht University (2020). She has completed numerous public health internships since 2015, including with the WHO Regional Office for Europe, Reproductive Health Uganda, and the Centre for Public Health and Primary Care for vulnerable populations in Lausanne. 

Rosemary is passionate about global health and particularly interested in health system strengthening for health promotion and disease prevention in the areas of migration health, infectious disease, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and environmental health. She believes everyone, regardless of race, gender, age, religion, disabilities, or borders, should have access to equitable health services, including universal health coverage.

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Co-Lead

Sophie Schneitler

Sophie Schneitler, MD is a member of the German Society for Tropical Medicine, Travel Medicine and Global Health e.V. and manages the group for the education of young professionals. She has been active for many years in analysing training conditions in tropical medicine in order to develop possible improvements. Her clinical focus is on tuberculosis and parasitoses. She is happy about any contact, be it to talk about training or cooperation in other areas.

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Ayusha Kaushal

Dr Ayusha Kaushal is a junior dentist at Manipal College of Dental Sciences, in India, with an interest for oral maxillo surgery. She is an adventurous and a lifelong learner.

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Francisca Bartilloti-Matos

My name is Francisca Bartilloti-Matos and I am a Portuguese medical doctor living and working in Porto after a time working in Scotland. I have a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and enjoy reflecting on Infectious Diseases and Humanitarian action, amongst many other things. While not at work, you can find me doing other things that make me happy, such as swimming in the cold sea, playing music or reading a novel.

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Jonas Seebacher 

My name is Jonas Seebacher I went to school in the small Austrian town of Wörgl where I did my A-level in 2015. Thereafter, I spent nine months at the Red Cross as a civil servant which motivated me to study medicine. I began my studies in 2016 at the Medical University of Innsbruck and am still studying there. Since August 2021, I am working at the Centre de Recherches Médicales de Lambaréné, Gabon where I am writing my graduation thesis on reference values for inflammation values in children from Sub-Saharan Africa.

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Isabelle von Polenz

My name is Isabelle von Polenz, I study Medicine in Göttingen (Germany), and a Master of Science in Global Health in Maastricht (Netherlands) as well as Bangkok (Thailand). She’s involved in several projects on Global Health Education, Access to Diagnostics, Air pollution, Global Mental Health, among others.

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Saqlain Raza 

Saqlain Raza is Assistant Professor at Imam Abdulrahman bin Faisal University, Saudi Arabia. He earned his Master’s degree in Public Health (Clinical Epidemiology) from UPS-France, followed by a Ph.D. in Applied Statistics from INP-Toulouse, France.

His work broadly concentrates on the methodology of the research projects specifically related to MNCH and malnutrition. Being a statistician, my interests are to check and suggest the coherence between types of data and the relevant statistical methodology e.g. regression techniques. Saqlain has been a team member of governmental and non-governmental organizations’ health evaluation projects in LMICs.

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Hafeez Hamza

Mr. Hafeez Hamza is a final year pharmacy student in Cyprus. He has a keen interest in Tropical Medicine and Global Health. He is currently a member of the AMR Youth Working Group at the World Health Student Alliance (WHSA) as well as part of the ‘Internal Relations Committee’ at the International Pharmaceutical Students’ Federation (IPSF). Hafeez is also a member of the ‘Professional Development Committee’ at IVPN-Student Network.

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Sofia Ardiles Ruesjas

Dr. Sofia Ardiles Ruesjas is a junior medical doctor and researcher from Spain. She earned her Master’s degree in Clinical Research and International Health from UB-ISGlobal (2022). Her primary research interests are Neglected Tropical Diseases, emerging infectious diseases and migrant health.

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Nada Abdalrahman

Nada Abdalrahman is a final year Medical Laboratory Sciences student at University of Khartoum. She is from Sudan, therefore she developed her interest in Tropical diseases and International Health. She is a member at ASTMH and British Society for Parasitology. She is also the founder of Parasitology and Medical Entomology | Sudan group which has more than 2k members from 43 universities in Sudan.

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Mabenga Peter

Mabenga Peter is a Research Assistant at the Tanzanian National Institute for medical research (NIMR), Amani medical research Centre. His main areas of interest are disease vectors biology and control, he currently involved and works on different research projects involving the evaluation of the effectiveness and efficacy of different vector control tools such as LLINs and IRS in Laboratory, semi field and community trials settings, detecting and monitoring of Insecticide resistance, Malaria vectors entomological surveillance, Zoonotic diseases control and Onchocerciasis elimination Mapping in mainland Tanzania.


Mabenga is a co-investigator and large community trials logistician on ongoing collaborative research projects, He holds a Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine from Sokoine University of Agriculture.

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Recent publication from the working group

Awareness and perceptions of medical students and doctors regarding Tropical Medicine education and training in Europe: An international, online-based survey.

Partnershipprojects – Survey

Personal experiences are valuable for projects and their development – although there are many partnerships, only a few have been identified as best practice examples in terms of equality and bilateral exchange.

More information

If you need more information contact [email protected]

FESTMIH is a not-for-profit network of European-based societies working in tropical medicine and global health Registered address: Nationalestraat 155, Antwerp, Belgium
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