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Global Health So Near, So Far

The India Post
04 December 2011
By Avnish Jolly

Mode of Education is changing every day and Knowledge management is upcoming field and according to our culture transmitting Knowledge is most pious action of Human being for Holistic development of mankind. According to Srimad Bhagavad-Gita – Those who see with eyes of knowledge the

difference between the body and the knower of the body, and can also understand the process of liberation from bondage in material nature, attain to the supreme goal.

Srimad Bhagavad-Gita in four basic, concise verses:

"I am the source of all spiritual and material worlds. Everything emanates from me. The Wise who fully realize this engage in my devotional service and worship me with all their hearts." (10.8)

"My pure devotees are absorbed in thoughts of me, and they experience fulfillment and bliss by enlightening one another and conversing about me." (10.9)

"To those who are continually devoted and worship me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to me." (10.10)

Who We Are

"Out of compassion for them, I, residing in their hearts, destroy with the shining lamp of knowledge the darkness born of ignorance." (10.11)

In the past 15 years, researchers at the University Pittsburgh Department Of Epidemiology (part of the Graduate School of Public Health) and a global network in 207 countries of 50,000 researchers and teachers have devoted time to developing the Supercourse, which has collected a library of more than 5,000 online lectures targeting public health and prevention. In this way all these devotee mercenaries of education are working best of their abilities to accomplish their goal – Global Health So Near, So Far.

In this quest they published lectures in 31 languages, Supercource published over 147 papers in leading medical journals including Nature, Lancet, British Medical Journal, Military Medicine, Nature Medicine, and PNAS among others. There web pages have been identified as in the top 100 by PC Magazine, and one of the top 11 content pages by the Lancet. There web links receive 75 million hits a year. Supercourse does not grant degrees or certificates, but is designed to be a resource for teachers, professors, and other educators. Supercourse does not provide access to faculty members developing the modules. Supercourse originally funded three times by NASA, and by the National Library of Medicine. They have built a "Library of Lectures" with passionate scientific lectures from across the world. Supercourse is a repository of lectures on global health and prevention designed to improve the teaching of prevention. Supercourse has a network of over 56000 scientists in 174 countries who are sharing for free a library of 4875 lectures in 31 languages. The Supercourse has been produced at the WHO Collaborating Center University of Pittsburgh, under the visionary leadership of Ronald LaPorte, Ph.D., with core developers Faina Linkov, Ph.D., Mita Lovalekar, M.D., Ph.D., and Eugene Shubnikov M.D. They have developed a technology for inexpensive, sustainable global training.

These program consists of:

1. Open Source: A Global faculty is developing and sharing their best, most passionate lectures in the area of Prevention and the Internet using an open source model. This benefits all. The experienced faculty member can beef up their lectures that are not cutting edge. New instructors reduce preparation time and have better lectures. Faculty in developing countries have access to current prevention information for the first time

2. Statistical Quality Assurance: They have established a Deming Model of statistical quality control to monitor lectures over time.

3. "Support" for Educators: The Library of Lectures consists of exciting lectures by academic prevention experts in the field. The classroom teacher "takes" them out for free like a library book. We"coach" the teacher rather than directly teaching students from a distance.

4. Text books: British Medical Association put text books on line for Supercourse.

5. Multilingual Lectures: For global use, the first lecture is in 8 languages. We are experimenting with machine translation as well.

6. Faculty: 70 Nobel Prize winners, the US Surgeon General, 39 IOM members, 200 AES members, 55 NAS members and other top people contributed lectures.

7.JIT lectures: Within days after a disaster lectures are provided, e.g. the Bam Earthquake, Tsunami, H1N1, Haiti Earthquake.

8.Mirrored Servers and CDs: Supercourse have many mirrored servers in Egypt, Sudan, China, Mongolia and others. Supercourse have distributed 20,000 Supercourse CDs.

Since the Supercourse began 15 years ago and noticed striking changes in the way people receive and share information — from computers and laptops to smaller devices such as Android devices and iPhones and iPads — and over the past 15 years the number of mobile phone users worldwide has increased tremendously. The most widely cited definition of m-health is by Robert Istepanian, who first defined it in the late 1990s as "emerging mobile communications and network technologies for healthcare." The Supercourse has a somewhat different focus on mobile technology, targeting prevention. During the past 50 years humans have seen an increase in life expectancy of 30 or more years, almost all due to prevention, yet most prevention consist merely of communication, education, and dissemination of public health knowledge. For the first time in the existence of humankind they can reach almost everyone in the world through mobile phones, dramatically improving the opportunities for prevention of health problems around the world.

Beside acchiving their Goal thay are also facing hardship – one of the biggest challenges that Supercourse faces as it transitions to support mobile global health requirements is how to embrace the wide variety of content formats and slide decks that health professionals want to contribute while also delivering these disparate content collections to different mobile devices. Further complicating the challenge are user expectations. Mobile apps must be simple, efficient, and extremely easy to use. Team of Supercourse believes that in the future mobile devices will play a critical role in improving people's health, especially in the developing world, through prevention. One of the important applications of mobile technology is prevention of diabetes, which is a growing problem around the world. Supercourse also hopes that mobile technology and apps will increase their research capabilities and help researchers collect information much faster. While most of us have cell phones these days, we do not use their full potential to improve health. The development of more disease prevention apps should encourage more frequent use of mobile devices by the general population. Supercourse welcomes everybody's thoughts about the development of global mobile apps for health.

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