Publicador de contenidos
javax.portlet.title.customblogportlet_WAR_customblogportlet (Blog Health is Global)

Reflections on the 2014 Barcelona Global Health Summer School


In July of this year, I had the privilege to attend the first ever Barcelona Global Health Summer School . The theme was “Health by System: the Role of Health Systems and the Path to Universal Health Coverage (UHC)”. Given recent discussions on UHC, the course was timely in providing participants with an overview of the fundamentals of health systems, and how we can work towards improving health equity. The week-long course featured numerous fantastic speakers and generated many stimulating discussions!

The range of excellent speakers came from various institutions and organisations in Europe. One thing that struck me was the passion and enthusiasm the speakers had for both their respective topic area and global health in general. The common themes of social justice, UHC, health equity, and the social determinants of health were evident throughout the course. The diversity of speakers and their expertise highlighted how issues in global health can be approached in various ways, and showed how vital relationships and collaboration are in the field.

Some of the lectures left a particular impression on me. Carme Borrell from the Public Health Agency of Barcelona (Agència de Salut Pública de Barcelona) gave a great talk on health inequities, and her determined approach left me inspired. Jim Campbell, the new Executive Director of the Global Health Workforce Alliance, gave an engaging and interactive talk on health workforce shortages and future challenges in the area. Also, we had a stimulating class debate on healthcare financing, facilitated by ISGlobal’s own Joan Tallada , which reflected the real-world debates and discussions that happen on such issues.

In the evenings we had workshop sessions organised by the Catalan Health Science Students’ Association (AECS). These focused on developing our practical skills, such as advocacy and policy writing. While the daytime lectures focused on macro-level international systems and policies, the workshops provided us with examples of how we, as individuals and groups, can advocate for socially just policies and processes.

I really enjoyed attending the Barcelona Global Health Summer School. The thought-provoking material has left me invigorated to pursue a career in global health. It was also a great opportunity to meet many different people from around the world who share a similar passion. Many thanks to the organisers for a fantastic event!