No one organization can deal with public health alone; but by partnering with the community and other organizations, the Global Health and Education Projects (GHEP) positions itself to have a profound impact worldwide, says Janna Murray of the University of South Florida, USA.
PUBLIC HEALTH is a complex term that takes on a wide variety of definitions. I believe that one of the best definitions of public health comes from the World Health Organization (WHO) which defines public health as “all organized measures (whether public or private) to prevent disease, promote health, and prolong life among the population as a whole” (WHO, 2015). WHO further emphasizes that public health encompasses the total system, including the conditions and policies that can have an effect on the disease.
There are many organizations that deal with the field of public health field. If you google the term “public health organizations” you are given thousands of results. These organizations range from federal, state, and local entities and universities to non-profit organizations. Achieving a “healthy” world requires the input and work from all these players. Global Health and Education Projects Inc. (GHEP) is one of these players. GHEP is a non-profit public health organization with a specific focus in global health with an emphasis on addressing and eliminating health inequalities as well as inequalities in education. The organization was founded by a group of experienced public health practitioners who are committed to aiding in the elimination of health disparities worldwide. GHEP has a number of programs that include both domestic and global public health and health research programs as well as youth education and development programs.
Based in Riverdale, Maryland the organization is heavily involved in the community, both locally and globally. A prime example of GHEP’s community involvement is the Health, Environmental Education and Awareness (HEEA) event that they are hosting on Saturday, June 13, 2015. Through its partnership with the local Riverdale community in Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA, and other partners, GHEP has organized a free community picnic and health educational event that is focused on increasing the community awareness of environmental health effects.
In addition to its health and educational programs, GHEP also publishes a peer-reviewed, free open access journal, the International Journal of MCH and AIDS (IJMA). IJMA focuses on maternal, infant, and child health and HIV/AIDS, especially in areas with significant health disparities such as low-income countries, and includes of variety of manuscripts types including original research, review articles, commentaries, etc. The journal’s editorial team is comprised of a number of experts in global health from all around the world from about 50 countries. One very interesting aspect of the IJMA is that it includes a mentoring program, the International Peer Mentoring Program (IPMP), which helps researchers and scientists from developing countries with manuscript development. Mentees are partnered with an experienced mentor that help them hone on their technical writing skills and address areas where they are lacking in order for them to be able to publish quality articles.
GHEP is an example of how complex the public health arena and how much work it takes to address the issue of public health. No one organization can deal with public health alone and by partnering with the community and other organizations GHEP has positioned itself to have a profound impact worldwide.
About the Author
Ms. Janna Murray is a candidate for a Master’s of Public Health in the College of Public Health at the University of South Florida, Florida, USA. She graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA, earning a Bachelor of Science in Biology. She was a research fellow at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Her time at the CDC sparked an interest in public health and epidemiology. At CDC, Janna learned the importance of public health, the impact of health disparities on a number of populations, and that collaboration across multiple institutions is key. On coming to GHEP, she says, “I am excited about my internship with GHEP because not only will it allow me to apply what I have learned during my studies to the real world, but I will be working with an institution with a focus on addressing health inequalities.“