Plenary 5: Health Education Specialists: Ensuring Your Relevance in a Global Society

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Recorded On: 03/20/2024

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The United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The COVID-19 pandemic underscored the need for all countries to invest in a national workforce prepared to promote health, treat illness, and respond to emergencies. This session will explore the challenges to professional preparation, research and practice in order to equip health education specialists with the essential knowledge and skills to address the SDGs and evolving complex global public health needs. 

Participants should leave this webinar being able to: 

  1. Describe two features of the WHO  global public and emergency roadmap. 
  2. Identify at least two skills and competencies needed by all health educators to keep pace with global trends and socio/environmental challenges affecting the health of all populations.

Competencies that will be covered include: 

7.5.1 Facilitate the development of strategic and/or improvement plans using system thinking to promote the mission, vision and goal statement for health education

Gigi Holder, LCSW, MPH, CHES®

Program Director, Child Access to Mental Health and Psychiatry

University of Mississippi Medical Center

Gigi Holder currently serves as the program director for the Child Access to Mental Health and Psychiatry (CHAMP) program operated out of the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) in Jackson. In this role, Gigi operates the day-to-day activities which vastly involve providing resources and referrals, and education to primary care providers across the state when they call the consultation phone line to speak to a mental health specialist regarding the care of their pediatric patients. The mission of CHAMP is to address the lack of mental health resources across Mississippi by allowing for same-day, peer to peer consultation between a medical provider and a social worker, child psychologist, or child psychiatrist so that behavioral and emotional concerns can be addressed without the need for unnecessary referral delay for services.

Prior to this position, Gigi completed a 2-year postgraduate fellowship with the Mississippi Thrive! Child Health and Development Project which was a comprised of a multidisciplinary team conducting developmental assessments for children up to age 6 at the Center for Advancement of Youth (CAY) at UMMC. As a clinician, she continues to provide therapy services to families with children aged 2 to 7 regarding behavioral concerns as well as exposure to trauma events for young children and adolescents. 

Gigi earned her bachelor’s degree in Health Education from the University of Arkansas in her hometown of Fayetteville, AR, and later received a Master's of Public Health and a Master's of Social Work from the Dual Degree Program in New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. Through all of this, her involvement with SOPHE has remained steadfast from maintaining her CHES credentialing to serving in leadership roles in both the House of Delegates and on the Board of Trustees for National SOPHE. 

Siobhan Fitzpatrick

Technical Officer

Health Workforce Department at WHO

Siobhan Fitzpatrick is a Technical Officer in the Health Workforce Department at the World Health Organization in Geneva. With a combined background spanning fifteen years in health worker education and training, Siobhan currently undertakes the development of policies, norms and standards to inform investment in health workforce education, employment and retention towards the achievement of universal health coverage and the Sustainable Development Goals. She coordinates the Global Health Workforce Network Education Hub and provides technical advice on strengthening health worker education across a range of areas universal health coverage, lifelong learning, and human resources for health leadership and management. Most recently, she led Action Area 2 competency-based education of the WHO and partner roadmap National workforce capacity to implement the essential public health functions including a focus on emergency preparedness and response. 

Suzanne Maman

PhD, Associate Dean for Global Health

UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health

Suzanne Maman, a social scientist trained in public health, is a professor in the Department of Health Behavior and is associate dean for global health at the Gillings School. Dr. Maman serves as co-lead for the Master of Public Health (MPH) program’s global health concentration, which she helped to develop. She also serves as UNC faculty director at the Duke-UNC Rotary Peace Center. Dr. Maman has been developing, implementing and evaluating HIV and violence prevention programs in sub-Saharan Africa for 20 years. She collaborates with the World Health Organization (WHO), the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and other governmental health agencies and educational institutions in the U.S. and globally to advance this work. Her work on how violence increases women’s risk for HIV infection, and how an HIV diagnosis may affect women’s experiences with violence, has informed programs in Tanzania and South Africa. Maman's work has also led to WHO guidance and clinical tools to support women during the HIV testing process. In addition, she teaches a skills-based qualitative research methods course that is required for master's students in health behavior.

As associate dean for global health, Maman works closely with colleagues within the Gillings School’s Research, Innovation and Global Solutions unit to integrate global initiatives into innovation, entrepreneurship and research, and lead programming that supports the School’s domestic and international students. She also partners with key research centers and institutes, including UNC’s Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases (IGHID) and the Gillings. 

Judith Monroe

PhD, President and CEO

CDC Foundation

Dr. Judith Monroe, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation, has dedicated her career to protecting people and saving lives. She joined the CDC Foundation in February 2016 as president and CEO, following her role as a deputy director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and director of CDC’s Office of State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support. In her work at the CDC Foundation, Dr. Monroe advances priority programs that improve the health of people across America and around the world. The CDC Foundation mobilizes philanthropic and private-sector resources to support CDC’s critical health protection work, managing hundreds of programs in the United States and in more than 90 countries. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the CDC Foundation supported the work of CDC, U.S. public health departments and low- and middle-income countries. Under Dr. Monroe’s leadership, the CDC Foundation provided support to disproportionately affected populations; procured personal protection equipment for frontline health workers; supported critical research, hired more than 4,000 surge staff; and provided technical assistance and grants to more than 350 community-based organizations.

The CDC Foundation under Dr. Monroe’s leadership also responded to the Zika epidemic as an implementing partner in addition to mobilizing resources; supported the response and recovery from the 2017 hurricane season; and serves as a strategic partner to CDC for global health security.
Prior to the CDC Foundation, Dr. Monroe oversaw key activities and technical assistance at CDC supporting the nation’s health departments and the public health system. Throughout the 2014–15 Ebola epidemic she served as senior advisor for the domestic response. During her tenure as the state health commissioner for Indiana she served as president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials through the H1N1 pandemic. She envisioned and founded the ASTHO president’s challenge in 2008. This leadership platform resulted in initiatives with significant health improvements and focus of ASTHO annual meetings. Dr. Monroe is a member of the Milken Institute’s Public Health Advisory Board and Executive Circle, the COVID Collaborative, the Advisory Council of the Pandemic Action Network and the APHA Alliance for Disease Prevention and Response. She serves as a member of the World Health Organization Foundation’s Strategic Advisory Group, WHAM global Board, Advancing a Healthier Wisconsin Endowment Advisory Committee, Woman of Impact, Texas Biomedical Research Institute’s Strategic Advisory Council and is a member of the Atlanta Rotary Club and International Women’s Forum. Additionally, she co-chaired Gov. Holcomb’s public health commission aimed at modernizing the public health system in Indiana.

Among her many awards, Dr. Monroe was recognized as one of Atlanta’s Most Admired CEOs for 2021 by the Atlanta Business Chronicle; awarded the United Way of Greater Atlanta Woman of Excellence Award; received the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce MAC Heroes of Global Health award; the Indiana Commission on Women Torchbearer Award and APHL Presidential Award. Dr. Monroe received the American Public Health Association’s (APHA) Presidential Citation for her work to improve the health and well-being of people around the world, and for her commitment to the future of public health as a mentor to young physicians and public health students. Dr. Monroe received her doctor of medicine from the University of Maryland and a bachelor of science degree from Eastern Kentucky University. She completed her residency in family medicine at the University of Cincinnati, a rural faculty development fellowship through East Tennessee State University, and a mini-fellowship in obstetrics through the University of Wisconsin. She also participated in the State Health Leadership Initiative at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and received an honorary doctorate from Purdue University in Health and Human Services.


Plenary 5: Health Education Specialists
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