Posted by: rhoban | June 28, 2010

North Carolina Voices – Global Health Comes Home

Welcome back for another series on global health! This year, I’m examining how global health knowledge affects North Carolina.

One of the enduring ideas about global health work is the one that knowledge all flows one way – from ‘here’ to ‘there.’

Indeed, money tends to flow from the developed world to the developing world – the billions spent by the US and others on combating AIDS, TB, malaria and other diseases is a testament to that reality.

But knowledge and skill are a much more fluid commodities. U S hospitals and doctors’ offices are filled with practitioners from many countries – some of the greatest minds in this country were born, raised and educated in another place. The U S pharmacopoeia is filled with drugs which were first noticed by practitioners from other places – aspirin is an example, while a new case in point is artemisinin, a compound noted by Chinese practitioners as effective against malaria, and now is the cornerstone of treatment for the disease. And we’ll see in this series how studying the sociology of other cultures can inform the process of doing research in this country.

“Global Health Comes Home” is an attempt to see how knowledge and ideas flow in all directions, and eventually make us better for it. I hope you enjoy the series.

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