Emory University announces new health institute

Emory University announced today a new Global Health Institute that will help address the most pressing health challenges around the world, particularly in poorer nations.

Jeffrey P. Koplan, MD, MPH, Emory vice president for academic health affairs and former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), will direct the new Institute, which builds on Emory's history of global health partnerships.

Emory's initial budget for the Global Health Institute is $110 million, including $55 million from the University's strategic plan and building funds and $55 million in investment from other sources including Emory schools and departments, foundations, and private and governmental partners. The Institute will continue to seek additional outside investment for its support and expansion. The funds will support new global health faculty, programs and partnerships.

"The new Global Health Institute, as part of Emory's strategic plan, will help us carry out our vision and commitment to positive transformation in the world," said Emory President James Wagner. "The Institute will bring together and extend the impact of Emory's strong public health work locally and around the world."

"By making this considerable investment in global health, Emory will broaden and deepen its capacity in infectious diseases, chronic diseases, vaccine and drug discovery, leadership development, health economics, and workforce development," said Michael M.E. Johns, MD, Emory executive vice president for health affairs and CEO of Emory's Woodruff Health Sciences Center.

The Global Health Institute will enhance Emory's existing strengths in global health by creating and enhancing partnerships with governments, academic and private institutions in the most needy parts of the world. The Institute also builds on Emory's partnerships with neighboring institutions -- the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), CARE, the Task Force for Child Survival and The Carter Center.

Programs identified for immediate support through the new Institute include:

  • The Republic of South Africa Drug Discovery Training Program, dedicated to developing skills in young African scientists in the discovery of new therapeutic drugs.
  • A vaccine discovery partnership with the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) in New Delhi, India.
  • A program to expand the current collaborative relationship between Emory University and the Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica (INSP) of Mexico.

The inaugural program associated with Emory's Global Health Institute is the International Association of National Public Health Institutes (IANPHI), an alliance of CDC-like institutions dedicated to optimizing global health by improving public health infrastructure around the world. IANPHI is supported by a five-year, $20 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to Emory University, in partnership with Finland's National Public Health Institute, KTL (Kansanterveyslaitos). Dr. Koplan is IANPHI president and principal investigator for the IANPHI grant.

More information about specific programs and partnerships is available at http://www.whsc.emory.edu/globalhealth.

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