The world has become increasingly interconnected, demonstrating a nation’s dependency on the global economic, security, and health status. Diseases, especially infectious and contagious diseases, do not recognize borders. Thus, a disease for example, can easily migrate to bordering countries if not contained. Nations must find educated and collaborative measures to resolve local and regional disease outbreaks before they have a major impact on resources and before they become pandemic. When health challenges do present an impact on resources, nations rely on others for support, further exemplifying the importance of education and collaboration.
The International Journal of MCH and AIDS, one of the Global Health and Education Projects’ (GHEP) peer-reviewed journals, published a study by Mondal et al. that attempted to examine life expectancy (LE) in the least developed countries and the health factors associated with LE. From the identified factors, Mondal and colleagues (2015) found that education was an important predictor of LE and that higher education levels among a population had a positive impact on LE. Educated people tend to better understand information on proper nutrition, hygiene, healthcare services, and common illness prevention measures (Mondal, 2015). Take the health outcome of mental disorders for example. Research conducted in epidemiology, clinical presentation, and interventions early in life is indispensable to strengthen the scientific bases of child and adolescent mental health clinical practice. In this sense, knowledge disseminated by scientific journals such as GHEP’s International Journal of MCH and AIDS (IJMA) and the International Journal of Translational Medical Research and Public Health (IJTMRPH) lay the foundations for evidence based measures (Kieling & Martin, 2013).
Unfortunately, developing countries lack the scientific resources to produce and create evidence based strategies to combat health issues. At the same time, developed countries sometimes lack focus or are hindered by challenges when dealing with specific health issues. These challenges and examples highlight the need that must be filled. It is from this urgency that we have global organizations such as GHEP that function to advance global health and education through journal publication.
How can journal publication advance global health and education? Let’s review some of the journal articles in GHEP’s journal database to see how they contribute to global health and education advancement. It was noted earlier that Mondal et al. attempted to identify health factors contributing to LE in developing countries. International efforts can now focus on LE in developing countries by increasing income and health facilities, improving the overall situation, and by decreasing deaths, fertility, and HIV prevalence rate. In an article in IJTMRPH, Islam et al. (2016) identified the need for the Bangladeshi government to create economic opportunities for women to enhance contraceptive use, since there was a gap among employed and unemployed women regarding using contraceptives. Ayaaba et al. (2017) in IJTMRPH concluded that mining regulations and health and environmental surveillance systems needed to be updated and implemented to protect the safety of minors from Coal Worker’s Pneumoconiosis, a rising global concern.
GHEP’s published journal articles reflect some of the various approaches in how journal publication advances global health and education by:
- publicizing a health outcome and its factors to make them publicly known,
- advocating international and collaborative measures to address health outcomes and their factors,
- pinpointing governmental flaws in health strategies (or lack thereof) to better support current or new health objectives,
- advertising a health outcome to create a sense of urgency and national/international support,
- identifying failing health systems and policies to create pressure for change, and
- identifying gaps in safety regulations and practices for workers and communities.
These approaches represent the importance of global health publications such as GHEP in their journal publication endeavors. With the current state of global health affairs, hopefully we see the benefit of these organizations’ mission efforts. I welcome your comments.
Contributor Mr. Hilliard, a PhD student in global health at Nova Southeastern University, is an intern with the Center for Global Health and Health Policy, Global Health and Education Projects, Inc. He can be reached at [email protected].