By Subhalakshmi Ganguly, AVP – ICTPH
One of the goals of any research organisation must be to continuously train and re-train existing employees, keep up with current technology and industry-specific skill sets, as well as expose staff to new ideas and resources to spark creativity, motivation and potential partnerships.
Towards that end, ICTPH created the 2010 Lectures series this past year. The series launched with Dr. Nalini Krishnan, a physician and local activist, who spoke to the team in detail about her work with TB in rural Tamil Nadu and the interaction between government, NGO and private organisations in delivery of medicine and care towards combating this illness. Dr. Krishnan also detailed the challenges of designing health intervention program, one of her core areas of experience, and this presentation was highly useful for our group, particularly the Human Capacity Team, in the work they would embark upon in Tanjore later this year.
In March, Dr. Sakthivel Selvaraj visited ICTPH to share his contrasting experiences and profiles of drug supply chains in Bihar and in Tamil Nadu, with a focus on understanding the contextual reasons for these differences. The presentation was useful for the ICTPH team and visiting audience members from Centre for Insurance and Risk Management (CIRM) in providing information regarding the intricacies of supplying medicines in rural areas, particularly when considering government policies that facilitate or delay delivery.
In June and July, ICTPH had respective visits from Dr. Peter Hovmand and Dr. Ramesh Raghavan, both of Washington University in St. Louis, to present research on novel strategies that public health researchers are currently utilizing to understand the critical social relationships within our communities. Dr. Hovmand’s presentation and workshop on systems dynamics presents an opportunity for us to understand the flow of ideas, learnings and innovations within a community, whether it is an urban one such as our organizational team or our village communities in Tanjore.
Dr. Ramesh Raghavan’s participation in the ICTPH Lecture Series focused on his research on the American Medicaid system and the implications of health financing on the quality of mental health care received by low-income populations on welfare. As ICTPH works on delivering healthcare in rural Tamil Nadu, the importance of understanding how insurance, government policies and financing impact healthcare in other contexts such as the US welfare system provides the potential of gaining industry understanding and possibly generating parallel ideas or innovations for our own health systems.
As ICTPH moves to IIT-Madras Research Park, our organisation is looking forward to transitioning this series into the Sparks Sessions that IFMR Trust has been sponsoring with visiting speakers from a variety of organisations and academic institutions. In October, we hope to host Dr. Indrani Gupta from the Institute of Economic Growth. Keep an eye out here at the ICTPH Blog for further information. Additionally, if you would also like to refer researchers, activists or health industry experts for these talks, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org .