What we’re reading… #MeToo meets #HealthForAll

How achieving universal health coverage can (and should) drive gender equity

Jennifer Schechter, co-founder and executive director of Hope Through Health, on how increased attention on gender inequities in global health coincides with a growing recognition of the value of Community Health Workers, and the potential for the Community Health Worker movement to advance gender equality.

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Katie Steels
Are you up to the Women Leaders in Global Health Challenge?

Think it's important to support female clinical researchers from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs)? Wish to attend this year's Women Leaders in Global Health (WLGH) conference in London for free? Well enter the new WLGH Challenge and you could do both!

Organised by The World Health Organization's Tropical Disease Research Programme (WHO/TDR), the challenge contest aims to expand women’s participation in the WHO/TDR Clinical Research and Development Fellowship, an initiative that provides support for mid-career individuals from LMICs to spend a year in a high-income country to learn about clinical research.

While women who apply for the Fellowship are just as likely as men to receive it, women have been less likely to apply. 16-24% of Fellowship applicants are women and about one-quarter of all participants are women. Challenge entrants could make a difference by developing creative ideas to make the fellowship more flexible or encouraging more women to apply. This could be a way to raise awareness of the Fellowship call among women, make the Fellowship more accessible to women with caregiving obligations, or a way to increase the number of qualified women applicants. 

Submissions will be judged on a 1-10 scale according to the following three criteria:

(1) capacity to increase the number of women who apply and receive WHO/TDR fellowships
(2) feasibility
(3) innovation, defined as different from the current practice used in the Fellowship

The contest is open to men and women from any location. Ideas from women in LMICs are particularly encouraged, but reviews will be blinded so that judges do not know who submitted each one. 

Individuals who submit exceptional ideas will be supported to join the 2018 Women Leaders in Global Health conference in London at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine this November. More importantly, selected ideas deemed feasible by WHO/TDR will be implemented to increase women’s participation in the Fellowship.

Ideas must be no more than 500 words and written in English. Submit your idea on the WLGH Challenge Contest website, where you can also find more information and contest guidelines.

Contact the Challenge coordinator, Ewen, at womenglobalhealthchallenge@gmail.com.   Best of luck!

WLGH Challenge Contest website >>

Chris Howard
African women working in global health: closing the gender gap in Africa?
 Credit: MRCG

Credit: MRCG

The lack of female researchers in sub-Saharan Africa reduces the diversity of scientific perspectives on gender dimensions of health, and curtails the ability of the society to advocate for maternal and reproductive health research agendas.

Researchers from the MRC Unit The Gambia Women in Science Working Group write in The Lancet about the challenges faced, and what changes are needed to enable African women to play a more prominent role in science.

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Katie Steels