Pitt Forms Center for Global Health

Issue Date: 
May 11, 2009
Donald BurkeDonald Burke

The University of Pittsburgh has established a Center for Global Health to promote multidisciplinary international health research and scholarship. The center, led by Donald S. Burke, associate vice chancellor for global health and dean of Pitt’s Graduate School of Public Health, is based on partnership with schools and centers across the University to address the most pressing health issues for people around the world. It was officially launched during an invitation- and media-only event on May 6 at the University Club in Oakland.

“This new center is an important symbol of our University’s tradition and standing as one of the world’s leading institutions for global health research, and it will enable our scientists to push forward with exciting work having the potential to significantly improve the human condition around the world,” said Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg.

Recognizing that most global health problems result from a combination of social, economic, political, and environmental inequalities, center staff will work with faculty and students in the areas of research, education, service, and policy.

“The current swine flu outbreak is yet another example of the need for a global response to address health issues that impact all of us,” Burke noted. “Our center will build on Pitt’s track record of significant discoveries and interdisciplinary partnerships, and will draw on a range of expertise to work toward solutions to our most challenging problems.”

The center will promote and support ongoing research projects at the University of Pittsburgh—projects as diverse as pandemic preparedness in Thailand, the improvement of children’s health in India, the control of mosquito-borne viruses in Brazil, and the treatment of HIV/AIDS in Mozambique.

On the education front, the center will provide grants to students and faculty to support their projects in international health, enabling their travel to low- or middle-income countries where there are significant health needs; sponsor the federally funded Fogarty International Center Framework in Global Health Program to develop curriculum in global health; and host an ongoing lecture series with health experts from around the world.

The center, directed by Joanne Russell, is guided by a global health advisory committee comprising deans from the health sciences and other partner schools across the university. For more information, visit www.globalhealth.pitt.edu.