By Jenny Eaton Dyer, PhD

Last week, VUSM’s World Health hosted global health hero, Dr. Paul Farmer, from Harvard Medical School. Over the course of the week, VUSM hosts speakers on various global health topics each day.


On Wednesday, I was asked to speak on the issues of women’s health in developing nations.

For this discussion, I developed a talk to address critical issues and interventions for maternal and child health, including family planning and nutrition, during the first 1000 days of a child’s life. For the medical students, I talked about the importance of timing and spacing pregnancies for women in the developing world to save lives. Though these students could serve as the skilled attendents, at least some day, to these births – I also spoke to them beyond their abilities in clinical care – to alternate ways to uplift women and children through advocacy.

Given the President had released the FY19 budget recommendations two weeks ago, I presented the latest numbers to them, demonstrated U.S. leadership on global health worldwide, and discussed what cuts over all (30% to entire International Affairs Account) and then cuts within accounts (family planning, nutrition, Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria) might mean for the lives of millions.

I hope I inspired these young health professionals to consider the power of their stories from medical missions and how these stories might influence their members of Congress to support full funding for global health and development.


Please see below for the powerpoint for this presentation.

NOTE: I would be remiss to say I wasn’t thrilled to follow both Dr. Farmer and Dr. Carol Ziegler at VUSM WHW, as Carol is a longtime friend and colleague from my graduating high school class.