Dr. Cecilia Rosales, assistant dean of the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health-Phoenix, was appointed to the Academic Technical Council (ATC) of the Binational Border Health Network (BBHN). The network is comprised of experts from 10 border states to improve responses to the challenges posed by public health conditions on the U.S.-México Border.
[Photo: Dr. Cecilia Rosales]
Funded by a $250,000 one-year grant from the National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT) in Mexico, it is the only funded network focused on the U.S.-México border region. The network’s frame of reference will follow the priorities established in the Healthy Border 2020 Initiative, to address five public health issues of binational concern, including chronic and degenerative diseases, infectious diseases, maternal and child health, mental health and addiction, and injury prevention.
In a recent interview with Horizonte, Dr. Rosales describes the mission of the BBHN, “It’s more about leveraging the few resources that exist along the border to do any kind of problem solving, especially research. In order to problem solve, we need the evidence. So it’s important to have a formalized group of academic researchers, along with other sectors, which would include government and non-governmental organizations that have an interest in solving the challenges we face every day along the border. This funding is a way of formalizing that infrastructure.”
Dr. Rosales describes the border region as a unique epidemiology unit. “The conditions along the border are very different from the rest of the population in the U.S. and Mexico. These 10 border states have been working together for a very long time through entities like the Arizona-Mexico Commission and recently, the U.S.-México Border Health Commission, which is comprised of representatives of the 10 states.”