Nina Pham, a nurse at Texas Presbyterian Hospital, had never set foot in Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea. Thousands of miles separated her from the three West African countries and their epidemic outbreaks of the deadly Ebola virus disease. Yet in October 2014, Nina was diagnosed with Ebola: she treated a man who had contracted the disease in Liberia before visiting family in the United States. Nina eventually recovered from Ebola and infected no further patients, but her case powerfully illustrates how the health of one nation can impact that of the entire planet.
The graduate students and community members of the University of Cincinnati chapter of Partners In Health Engage are committed to raising awareness about global health’s increasing importance. The group represents the grassroots wing of Partners In Health, a Boston-based nonprofit that promotes equal access to healthcare in underserved communities around the world. Caroline Hensley, a master’s student in public health at the UC College of Medicine and the team coordinator for the UC chapter, describes her organization’s role as “trying to expose different players in the game of life to this outlook that there are other people in the world whose health we care about.”