Global Health Studies (HLTH)

* HLTH 081a or b, Current Issues in Medicine and Public HealthRobert Bazell

Analysis of issues in public health and medicine that get extensive media attention and provoke policy debates. The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed severe challenges in the communication between science and health experts and the public. Thus, a prime focus is a survey of epidemiology and related topics such as vaccination attitudes. The class covers other topics including (but not limited to) the value of cancer screening, genetic testing, the U.S. role in global health, physician assisted suicide and the cost of health care. Students learn to understand the scientific literature and critique its coverage in popular media–as well as producing science and medical journalism themselves. Enrollment limited to first-year students. Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.  SC

HLTH 140a / SOCY 126a, Health of the PublicNicholas Christakis

Introduction to the field of public health. The social causes and contexts of illness, death, longevity, and health care in the United States today. How social scientists, biologists, epidemiologists, public health experts, and doctors use theory to understand issues and make causal inferences based on observational or experimental data. Biosocial science and techniques of big data as applied to health.  SO
Th 9:25am-11:15am

* HLTH 155a / E&EB 106a / MCDB 106a, Biology of Malaria, Lyme, and Other Vector-Borne DiseasesAlexia Belperron

Introduction to the biology of pathogen transmission from one organism to another by insects; special focus on malaria, dengue, and Lyme disease. Biology of the pathogens including modes of transmission, establishment of infection, and immune responses; the challenges associated with vector control, prevention, development of vaccines, and treatments. Intended for non–science majors; preference to freshmen and sophomores. Prerequisite: high school biology.  SC
MW 1pm-2:15pm

HLTH 230b / GLBL 223b, Global Health: Challenges and ResponsesCara Fallon

Overview of the determinants of health and how health status is measured, with emphasis on low- and middle-income countries. The burden of disease, including who is most affected by different diseases and risk factors; cost-effective measures for addressing the problem. The health of the poor, equity and inequality, and the relationship between health and development.  SO0 Course cr
MW 11:35am-12:25pm

* HLTH 240b / GLBL 193b, Epidemiology and Public HealthMarney White

A general introduction to epidemiology and the field of public health. Methods of epidemiological investigation, research, and practice. Emphasis on study design and the skills necessary for the conduct of mentored field research. Priority to Global Health Fellows.
TTh 1pm-2:15pm

* HLTH 255a, Policies, Programs, and People-Centered Processes to Reform Global HealthRobert Hecht

The unfinished agenda in global health–as shown through poor health outcomes for millions, ineffective programs, and inequitable participation, access to services, and health results–is enormous. To address these challenges, global health leaders including people from affected communities and global health organizations must enhance their knowledge, skills, tools, and processes to maximize the use of scarce resources. The purpose of the course is to (a) familiarize students with the most significant policy and program decisions facing global health, as well as the stakeholders and institutions and the political economy behind global health agendas today; (b) consider ways in which community-based, people centered processes can lead to a more equitable global health programs and outcomes, and what this means for changes in the current global health institutions; (c) expose students to the key data and analytical tools that can be employed to evaluate the pros and cons of alternative options for scaling up health programs in an effective and equitable manner; (d) examine and assess concrete case examples of recent analyses that have positively influenced major global health investment decisions; and (e) equip students with knowledge and skills to critique current practices, recommend positive changes, and carry out global health policy analysis and translate findings into concrete recommendations.  SO

* HLTH 370a / ER&M 360a / HSHM 432a / SOCY 390a / WGSS 390a, Politics of ReproductionRene Almeling

Reproduction as a process that is simultaneously biological and social, involving male and female bodies, family formation, and powerful social institutions such as medicine, law, and the marketplace. Sociological research on reproductive topics such as pregnancy, birth, abortion, contraception, infertility, reproductive technology, and aging. Core sociological concepts used to examine how the politics of reproduction are shaped by the intersecting inequalities of gender, race, class, and sexuality.  WR, SO
Th 3:30pm-5:20pm

* HLTH 385a / AFST 385a / EP&E 350a / HIST 391Ja / PLSC 429a, Pandemics in Africa: From the Spanish Influenza to Covid-19Jonny Steinberg

The overarching aim of the course is to understand the unfolding Covid-19 pandemic in Africa in the context of a century of pandemics, their political and administrative management, the responses of ordinary people, and the lasting changes they wrought. The first eight meetings examine some of the best social science-literature on 20th-century African pandemics before Covid-19. From the Spanish Influenza to cholera to AIDS, to the misdiagnosis of yaws as syphilis, and tuberculosis as hereditary, the social-science literature can be assembled to ask a host of vital questions in political theory: on the limits of coercion, on the connection between political power and scientific expertise, between pandemic disease and political legitimacy, and pervasively, across all modern African epidemics, between infection and the politics of race. The remaining four meetings look at Covid-19. We chronicle the evolving responses of policymakers, scholars, religious leaders, opposition figures, and, to the extent that we can, ordinary people. The idea is to assemble sufficient information to facilitate a real-time study of thinking and deciding in times of radical uncertainty and to examine, too, the consequences of decisions on the course of events. There are of course so many moving parts: health systems, international political economy, finance, policing, and more. We also bring guests into the classroom, among them frontline actors in the current pandemic as well as veterans of previous pandemics well placed to share provisional comparative thinking. This last dimension is especially emphasized: the current period, studied in the light of a century of epidemic disease, affording us the opportunity to see path dependencies and novelties, the old and the new.  SO
Th 3:30pm-5:20pm

* HLTH 490a / GLBL 420a, Global Health Research ColloquiumStaff

This course is designed for Global Health Scholars in their senior year as they synthesize their academic studies and practical experiences during their time in the Global Health Studies MAP. In this weekly seminar, Global Health Scholars analyze central challenges in global health and discuss methodological approaches that have responded to these pressing global health concerns. In addition to close reading and discussion, students present on a topic of their choosing and contribute to shaping the agenda for innovative methods in global health research and policy. Prerequisite: HLTH 230 or permission of the instructor. This is a required course for Global Health Scholars and enrollment is limited to Global Health Scholars.   RP