UTHSC Hosts Inaugural Multicultural and Global Health Symposium Nov. 6

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The Center for Multicultural and Global Health at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center will host its inaugural Multicultural and Global Health Symposium Saturday, November 6, from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. in Memphis.

The free symposium will bring together local, national, and international speakers to discuss the theme of “Re-Imagining Multicultural and Global Health in the Age of COVID.” The keynote speaker will be Carlos Rodriguez-Galindo, MD, executive vice president of St Jude Children’s Research Hospital and chair of the Department of Global Pediatric Medicine.

The event, which is open to the university, affiliated institutions, and the general public, will be held in person in the library on the second floor of the Mooney Building at 875 Monroe in the Historic Quadrangle on the Memphis campus. It will also be live streamed for those who cannot attend. To register go to: https://bit.ly/3lsq4Vy. Breakfast and lunch will be available for participants. The symposium is approved for 6.25 continuing medical education credits.

“We are looking forward to welcoming distinguished speakers from various institutions in the United States and abroad to discuss current issues in global health – specifically lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, sustainable global health in the modern era, and the health impacts of the Southern border crisis,” said Denis Foretia, MD, an assistant professor of surgery at UTHSC and a member of the executive board of the UTHSC Center for Multicultural and Global Health.

“This is really the first big step in bringing together the entire community to talk about multicultural and global health,” he said. “What we are trying to accomplish is to reexamine some of the inequities in health care and how COVID has exacerbated them.”

The UTHSC Center for Multicultural and Global Health was launched in the College of Medicine earlier this year. Its mission is to cultivate and leverage relationships with institutions locally, nationally, and globally to expand student, resident, and faculty access to multicultural health care delivery, address global health challenges, and train the next generation of global health leaders.

As part of its global outreach, UTHSC has established a partnership with Levy Mwanawasa Medical University in Lusaka, Zambia. This allows the institutions to collaborate in clinical care delivery; in teaching medical, nursing, pharmacy and other health care students; and in research. The center’s global outreach also extends to partnerships in the Philippines and with Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel.

Among panelists speaking Saturday about sustainable global health are: Sudha Jayaraman, MD, MSc, FACS, professor of surgery and director of the Center for Global Surgery at the University of Utah; Peter Waiswa, PhD, professor of Health Policy and Planning, School of Public Health, Makerere University in Uganda; and Dwomoa Adu, MD, of the Department of Nephrology at Korle Bo Teaching Hospital at the University of Ghana Medical School in Accra.

Among those speaking on refugee and immigrant health and the crisis on the southern border are: Sommer Aldulaimi, MD, FAAFP, associate professor  of family and community medicine at the University of Arizona in Tucson and co-director of the Global and Border Health Program; and Ellen Beck, PhD, professor of family and community medicine at the University of California, San Diego.

UTHSC faculty and guests from local and state institutions will present lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are extremely excited and honored to have the full support of the university for this event,” Dr. Foretia said.