Washington, D.C., June 4, 2010 (PAHO) - The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Harvard School of Dental Medicine (HSDM) today signed an agreement that will make PAHO internships in the area of international oral health available to Harvard dental students.
Photo PAHO/WHO Bola Oyeleye
The agreement was signed by PAHO Director Dr. Mirta Roses and HSDM Dean Dr. R. Bruce Donoff at PAHO headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The internship program is a partnership between the PAHO Oral Health Program and the Global Health Initiative at HSDM. It will give Harvard students valuable field experience while advancing global oral health, particularly through the Caries Free Communities Initiative. In addition, the establishment of an official relationship between PAHO and HSDM will promote awareness of oral health as an essential component of general health.
"We welcome this opportunity to provide an environment that will expose young professionals to the global health perspective and international cooperation in health," said Dr. Roses. "We have a longstanding relationship with Harvard, particularly in the field of international public health, and it's a pleasure to find new avenues for cooperation."
"This collaboration is an important piece of our plans to make oral health part of the greater global health agenda," said Dr. Donoff. "It also will provide a place for the passion and interest of our students in this area of study and learning."
The first internship under the new agreement will bring a Harvard student to Washington to participate in the assessment of oral health needs in emergency settings in Haiti, as part of reconstruction efforts following the Jan. 12 earthquake.
"The internship affiliation is a win for both organizations," said Dr. Saskia Estupiñán-Day, PAHO's top expert on oral health. "My past experience mentoring Harvard students has impressed me with the energy and fresh perspective they bring to PAHO. I am looking forward to working with and advising these future leaders in oral health."
PAHO is an international public health agency with more than 100 years of experience in working to improve the health and quality of life of the peoples of the Americas. It serves as the specialized organization for health of the Inter-American System. It also serves as the Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization and enjoys international recognition as part of the United Nations system.
For more information, contact: Anna Scharfen
, Coordinator, Caries Free Communities Initiative, PAHO/WHO. Tel. 202-974-3044.