Penn Bioethics Seminar Series (PBS): Megan Doherty, MPH and Paul Lu, MD
12:00pm - 1:00pm • via Zoom
Special considerations for ethics in short-term global health training programs
Megan Doherty, MPH | Director of Operations and Programming, Center for Global Health
Paul Lu, MD | Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
Opportunities to participate in short-term experiences in global health (STEGH) are now commonplace at many medical schools as well as private, fee-based organizations located in high-income countries (HICs). The purposes for STEGH are diverse and include low-skilled project volunteering, high-skilled research assistantships, and clinical rotations that typically occur over weeks to months. While the impact of STEGH on HIC medical trainees has been reported as predominately positive in nature, the impact of these experiences on the institutions and individuals who host these trainees is not fully understood, particularly in low- and middle-income country (LMIC) settings. Ethical concerns pertaining to STEGH have been described in the literature and include burdening resource-constrained systems with little-to-no benefit to the host site, power imbalances, and harms in patient care. We provide a brief overview on the ethical challenges related to STEGH while highlighting perspectives of LMIC hosts and describe strategies to address ethical concerns with a specific focus on PSOM’s Center for Global Health efforts.
Megan Doherty, MPH is the Director of Operations and Programming in PSOM’s Center for Global Health (CGH). In this capacity, Megan develops and leads CGH training opportunities and partnership programming for Penn and global partner trainees, identifies internal and external research and collaborative opportunities and manages stakeholder engagement. Previously, Megan was the Director for International & Service-Learning Programs in Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. Megan’s approach to global health partnerships is largely informed by her in-service training and experience as a health sector Peace Corps volunteer in Mali before coming to Penn.
Paul Lu is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine. He is a co-director for the PSOM global health pre-departure training course with Megan Doherty. He is passionate about global health, medical education, and capacity building. While at Penn, Paul has travelled to Botswana and Vietnam on multiple occasions to help with curriculum development and has led several faculty development workshops.
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