Monday, April 1, 2013

Population what?!

School of Public Health, Population Medicine Masters program

I've been wanting to get a higher education.  I've realized I've come to a place in my career where I can't go any further in helping the community I've come to serve without some additional education.  My first thought was to be a Nurse Practitioner - I quickly realized that was an impossibility given I live in Honduras, Nurse Practitioners don't even exist here, and there is no U.S. school that will allow me to do my observed clinical hours in a 3rd World Country - and trust me...I've looked!  So this also left out the possibility of becoming a midwife as well - those darn clinical hours!  As a midwife, it would limit my scope of education considerably, and as we don't plan on delivering any babies at our little clinic (at least for now).  I wanted something that would help me improve the community - that's mostly why I'm here afterall - not just to provide a band-aid, but to get to the core of the problems.

Then I found the Masters program under the School of Public Health called Population Medicine.  What in the world?!  What does that even mean?  I'm looking at this program, and it's so specific, I am guessing only a handful of people even HAVE this masters degree...but the more I looked at it, the more I realized this is EXACTLY what would serve me well.  Here is what the program looks to teach:

o Apply epidemiological methods to the prevention and treatment of acute and chronic diseases
o Use basic and advanced statistical methods to correctly interpret data
o Incorporate effective management approaches into public health settings
o Promote the use of clinical preventive services
o Evaluate and minimize risk in lifestyle diseases
o Apply population medicine skills in community settings

Um...yeah...RIGHT up my alley - basically, what I'm already doing, but now I'll KNOW how to do what I'm doing :-)

I started today, and can't be more excited.  It's a total of 56 units, and given the time requirement for each class, and let's face it, the expense (Mike is also pursing his Masters Program) I am going to be restricted to only taking one class at a time.  My first two classes are anything but exciting, but I'm in...I'm going...and I can't WAIT...

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