Devin Walsh-Felz (on the far right) completed her undergraduate degree at University of Wisconsin-Madison with a major in biology and a certificate in global health. She went on to be a medical student at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health
Where: Walsh-Felz’s undergraduate global health experience took her to Uganda, which convinced her to return during medical school. She completed an internship with Baylor-Uganda, a not-for-profit organization affiliated with Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative. As an intern she traveled to clinics to collect data, attended meetings with local leaders and delivered reporting tools to clinics. She and classmate Priya Pathak also carried out an independent project focused on newborn care. A large part of community-based care in Uganda is accomplished by Village Health Teams (VHTs) – these are community volunteers who are trained to provide health education and appropriate referrals, especially in rural villages. The study she completed assessed newborn care knowledge of VHT’s and the supervisors who train them.
Local to Global Connection: “One of the struggles I witness in our health care system today is a large amount of waste, as well as tremendous disparities. I believe that part of the solution to some of these problems involves increasing public health initiatives, focusing on preventative care and critically examining access to care. These were also some of the priorities of the organizations I was working with in Uganda. In Uganda, many of the health care challenges arose from limited resources and interrelated limited access. Creative evidence-based solutions are crucial both at home and abroad in order to increase healthcare access, efficiency and effectiveness.
Advice: “Food is an incredible unifying force. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, learn about local food — you will find that you are learning so much more.”
By Olivia Riedel / October 29, 2015