NCD Synergies and HMS Program in Global NCDs and Social Change leads training for decentralized cardiac care

Author: Amy McLaughlin, NCD Synergies
August 5, 2018

On July 2nd, the NCD Synergies program in partnership with the Program in Global NCDs and Social Change at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, welcomed Dr. Fred Ochieng’, our team’s first Advanced Fellow in Cardiovascular Disease and Global Health Equity. Dr. Ochieng’ is a cardiologist who will be working across the NCD Synergies-supported PIH sites to provide decentralized cardiac care, and will oversee the training of nurses and other mid-level providers on skills and diagnostics, with a particular focus on echocardiography.

We are delighted to welcome Fred to our team!

Photo: Andrew Marx / Harvard Medical School
Dr. Gene Kwan (left), NCD Synergies Associate Director of Cardiovascular Training & Research and Dr. Gene Bukhman (right), NCD Synergies Program Director, welcome Dr. Fred Ochieng (center) to our team as the inaugural fellow in Cardiovascular Disease and Global Health Equity.

Following Fred’s arrival, the Program in Global NCDs and Social Change at HMS directed a three-day Continuing Medical Education (CME) course from July 28th – 30th on Cardiovascular Disease and Global Health Equity at Harvard Medical School, directed by Dr. Gene Bukhman.

This three-day course in CVD and Global Health Equity aimed to equip participants with the knowledge, clinical skills, and assessment strategies needed to deepen their involvement in cardiovascular policy and service delivery in low- and middle-income countries. The course had an emphasis on rural communities with a high burden of conditions such as rheumatic and congenital heart disease.

Over 10 participants completed the course. Participants had a diverse range of backgrounds, including physicians-in-training, early and mid-career physicians, as well as nurse practitioners, and physician’s assistants. Participants also had a range of global health experience: some who were very interested and wanted to learn more, while others had long-term relationships in low-income country settings and were looking to gain more skills and knowledge. The course will be offered during the summer on an annual basis going forward.

The course brought together 18 faculty members including experts in cardiology, interventional cardiology, electrophysiology, cardiothoracic surgery, emergency medicine, nursing, neurology, epidemiology, clinical mentoring, and community-based care. The discussions spanned topics around costing of cardiology care, prioritizing equity in providing treatment in lower-resource settings, and the use of integrated care teams in delivering high-quality care.

Gene Bukhman / Harvard Medical School
Participants in front of Harvard Medical School upon completion of the Continuing Medical Education Course on “Cardiovascular Disease and Global Health Equity”.

This course bridged the gap between interest in global policy and knowledge of treating these prevalent conditions in lower-resource settings. Upon conclusion of the course, participants will continue to build on their obtained knowledge by contributing to cardiovascular research and supporting clinical capacity building in lower- and middle-income countries.

Our teams at Partners In Health and HMS look forward to continuing to further expand training and mentorship for the treatment of cardiovascular disease in global health, and working to bring care and treatment of cardiovascular disease closer to patients and their families.