Tropical Disease Biology Workshop in Ecuador

Visit also: Detailed announcement of the summer 2010 program

Description of the program:

The objective of this multidisciplinary adventure and field research experience is to gain a deeper understanding of the complex factors that play a role in the biology of Tropical Diseases. The high prevalence of these diseases is not the whole problem but rather a consequence of many factors that come together creating a propitious environment for the spread of disease. These include public health aspects, quality and availability of health care delivery systems, blood supply safety, economical development issues, socio-economic conditions of the population, education, legislation, geography and climate, epidemiological and biomedical research, etc.

     During the workshop participants will have first hand exposure to the splendor, the diversity and the contrast offered by this Tropical Andean country and have the opportunity to see beyond the "lens of the camera" into the harsh reality in which the majority of the populations of developing countries live. We will visit several health care facilities, ranging from modern, well-equipped institutions to provincial public hospitals to small rural health centers to areas were there is no health care available. We will examine at public health issues related to water management, waste disposal, and vaccination campaigns in urban and rural communities located both in the Andean Valleys and in the Tropical regions of the country. Additionally, the group will visit several schools were there will be an opportunity to interact with the children, the teachers and community members.

    This year's workshop will also include a strong research component, participants, staff and faculty functioning as co-designers and co-investigators in  the collection of data on water and water management, the presence of mosquito breeding habitats, and community education in regard to water and mosquitoes (transmitters of several pathogenic microbes including malaria parasites and dengue virus).

The Ecological Perspective:
This will involve activities such as visiting known foci of tropical diseases; exploring the jungle setting; and possibly collecting and identifying arthropod vectors of pathogenic microorganisms.
The Clinical Perspective:
This will involve activities such as visiting urban and rural hospitals and observing the signs and symptoms of tropical diseases firsthand; visiting blood banks; and visiting diagnostic & research laboratories and institutes.
The Public Health Perspective:
This will involve observation of sanitary infrastructure, waste disposal, water treatment, electricity; Conversations with public health officials and public health personnel; visiting the Ministry of Health and having a discussion with personnel in the Epidemiology section; Conversations with voluntary relief organizations, etc.
The Social/Economic/Political Perspective:
This will involve activities such as visiting cities and rural villages to observe how water, waste, food, and other resources are or could be managed with regard to disease prevention; meeting with personnel of international agencies, e.g. PLAN Internacional, PAHO (Pan-American Health Organization); and so on.

Upcoming offerings of this program:
Detailed information on these offerings will be publish shortly

Program details
(click link below)
Location Approximate Dates:
(subject to change)
Application Deadline Director
17th Trop. Dis. Biology
Ecuador Summer 2010. July 25th to August 6th.
- 6 credit hours -
April 15th, 2010 Dr.

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Web Journals from Previous years
Get a flavor of previous workshops in Ecuador. Read the Web Journals from Previous TDI Sponsored workshops

Photo Galleries
A picture is worth a thousand words. See a selection of pictures submitted by past participants.

Funding Sources for Students
Listing of internal and external funding sources for participation in TDI sponsored programs.


For information more information e-mail
  Ohio University
College of Osteopathic Medicine
Irvine Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701
740-593-2530 740-597-2778 fax
Last updated: 04/20/2012