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Global Health Education Scholars Track Research Program

The Research Scholars program gives medical students an opportunity to develop evidence-based expertise in a selected area within the four-year curriculum of the College of Medicine MD program. Fostering creativity and innovation, the project chosen for study within the program will be based on a student's existing interests or on new ideas developed in the Frontiers curriculum.

Learn more about the Research Scholars Program

Global Health Research Scholars

Global Health Research Scholar Nicholas Archer, MD '25

Nicholas Archer
Global Health Scholar Class of 2025

I am proposing a retrospective review of data collected during my participation in two medical missions to Ecuador. The project will be overseen by David Silbert, MD, the pediatric ophthalmologist who ran the medical missions. The goal of the project is to determine if binocular infrared photoscreeners can be used to prescribe glasses for underserved children, without the need for a full dilated eye exam.

Global Health Research Scholar Harry Lin, MD '25

Harry Lin
Global Health Scholar Class of 2025

California houses the biggest populational percentage for Asians. However, the Asian population is unde- studied in the public health setting. Asian populations are commonly mistaken for a homogenous group despite their heterogeneity among the population, with different practices and values. Therefore, each group’s experience with the COVID-19 pandemic can vary based on different cultures, socioeconomic status and so on. I am interested in the COVID-19 landscape among Asians in California and therefore will be conducting a quantitative data analysis of excess mortality rates among the Asian population in California, collaborating with my UCSF mentor Dr. Yea-Hung Chen. This study can potentially be used to explore social determinants of health among different Asian groups and drive targeted social or policy interventions toward more vulnerable Asian communities in California.

Harry presented his research at Discovery Day 2022. View his poster: Excess Mortality Among Asians in California During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Global Health Research Scholar Simone Udeh, MD '25

Simone Udeh
Global Health Scholar Class of 2025

In Nigeria, opioids are commonly misused in large quantities and are of major concern to physicians due to the debilitating effects on the user’s health. A drug use survey by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in 2018 found that 14.4% of Nigerians between ages 15-64 abuse drugs, a percentage that is more than two times higher than the global average of 5.6%, with cannabis being the most abused followed by opioids with a 6.0% prevalence in men and 3.3% prevalence in women (mainly Tramadol followed by codeine and heroin) (United Nations 2019).

This study seeks to assess the patterns of opioid misuse among individuals with substance use disorders, in Lagos, Nigeria using a drug misuse questionnaire.

Simone presented her research at Discovery Day 2022. View her poster: Tramadol and Other Opioid Use Among Individuals With Substance Use Disorders in Lagos, Nigeria

Alyson Kim, Global Health Research Scholar Class of 2024

Alyson Kim
Global Health Scholar Class of 2024

An estimated 3,000 Kenyan women and girls suffer from obstetric fistulas each year, a condition that carries dire physical, social and economic consequences for those affected. A dedicated fistula hospital — the Gynocare Fistula Centre — provides free reconstructive fistula surgeries, eradicating the financial barriers of receiving care. However, a plethora of non-financial considerations continue to hinder the women and girls’ access to Gynocare’s services. My research explores how socioeconomic, cultural and educational circumstances affect patient access to free reconstructive surgery at this hospital in urban Kenya. Another item I will explore is an evaluation instrument to accommodate the linguistic and cultural understanding of the participants of this study.

Alyson presented her work at Discovery Day 2021. View her poster: A Qualitative Analysis of Factors Affecting Women's Access to Genital Fistula Surgery in Western Kenya

Jannah Wing, Global Health Research Scholar Class of 2024

Jannah Wing
Global Health Scholar Class of 2024

Sickle cell anemia is a common and largely neglected inherited blood disorder, with an estimated mortality rate as high as 50-90% in some parts of sub-Saharan Africa. In order to address this global health problem, a group at Lehigh University is working with partners in Sierra Leone to design and implement a low-cost, easy-to-use sickle cell anemia screening device, so that patients can be diagnosed and access lifesaving care from an early age. My research contributes to this project by analyzing how a feasible sickle cell screening program could function within the current Sierra Leonean health care system. Specifically, I am mapping the weakness and opportunities within their current health care system, and using modeling and statistical analysis to compare the feasibility of different screening and intervention programs within this context.

Jannah presented her work at Discovery Day 2021. View her poster: Analyzing Needs and Potential Impacts of a Feasible Sickle Cell Screening Program Within the Current Sierra Leonean Healthcare System

Jannah was one of the authors of a conference paper, "Reducing Child Mortality in Sierra Leone With a Sustainable Diagnostics Device for Sickle Cell Disease," published in 1st International Academic Conference on "Why It Matters."

Courtney DiSangro, Global Health Scholar Class of 2023

Courtney DiSangro
Global Health Scholar Class of 2023

My research focus is on vaccines, specifically the measles vaccine (MMR). I’m researching the causes of the recent measles outbreaks through analyzing global attitudes and social determinants affecting vaccine uptake in different countries. I'm also discussing health policies created and implemented by these countries to enforce vaccines during outbreaks, and whether these policies are sustainable long term.

Courtney presented her work at Discovery Day 2020. View her poster: Geographic Health Inequities in the Philippines: Rural vs. Urban Health

Melissa Margolis, Global Health Research Scholar Class of 2022

Melissa Margolis
Global Health Scholar Class of 2022

My research focuses on optimizing health care delivery in humanitarian response. I am analyzing how different frameworks and guidelines are used to manage infectious disease outbreaks in conflict-affected settings. I explore these issues through the lens of clinical infectious disease practice, health policy and health economics. As part of my research, I worked with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine as part of the RECAP project. RECAP is a partnership between humanitarian NGOs, national governments and U.K. universities focusing on strengthening responses to humanitarian crises and epidemics in the health sector.