This June, Mr. Karar Zunaid Ahsan, doctoral student of maternal and child health in the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health, will visit Lilongwe, Malawi, to kick off a year of service as a Policy Communication Fellow. Implemented by the Population Reference Bureau and the African Institute for Development Policy, the fellowship focuses on effectively communicating research findings to influence policy development on a global scale.
Mr. Ahsan, will build on a wealth of previous international experience. Originally from Bangladesh, he has conducted monitoring, evaluation and research in the health sector for more than 12 years.
During his time at the Summer Institute in Lilongwe, Mr. Ahsan will connect with local research and advocacy experts and learn, firsthand, relevant advocacy priorities and policy landscapes. He will meet guest speakers as they address topics related to health and population policy issues, and he will present his own dissertation research in terms of its relevance to policy audiences.
“My doctoral study involves assessing the inequity in utilization of maternal health services in Bangladesh,” Mr. Ahsan said. “For years, Bangladesh has been considered an example for improving health by increasing coverage of essential health services in a resource-constrained setting. Using nationally representative data, I demonstrate that the increase in coverage of maternal health services hasn’t been equitable. As part of my dissertation, I aim to isolate the determinants of maternal health inequity and present policy recommendations to progress towards the goal of universal health coverage.”
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