The Hybrid MPH Class of 2021 poses for a group photo during their orientation in summer 2019.
Amidst the Pandemic: Dartmouth MPH Practicums Promote Crucial Change in Public Health
The Class of 2021 in The Dartmouth Institute’s online/on-campus hybrid MPH program represents an exceptional group of healthcare leaders. They rose above the challenges of working through a global pandemic, while balancing full-time jobs and pursuing their degree, to successfully complete their field internships (Applied Practice Experience) for the program. Below, students share the impact their work has made on their professional goals and their ambitions for improving health and healthcare in their communities.
Healthcare Analytics for COVID-19 and Anchor Mission
The onset of COVID-19 shifted the focus of Rebecca Brandes’ project altogether.
At UMass Memorial Medical Center, part of Central Massachusetts’ most extensive health system, Brandes first worked with the Office of Clinical Integration. There she would manage health equity work and create an inventory of measures related to implementing their Anchor Mission, a system-wide initiative to improve community wealth and equity.
However, with the urgency of COVID-19, the mission’s work was put on pause. Her team became focused on reporting COVID-19 analytics to the UMass Memorial health system and the surrounding city of Worcester to monitor information on positive cases and testing efforts.
Brandes’ role turned to project managing a process for gathering and assessing the inundation of data and preparing weekly reports on the pandemic’s impact on Worcester, the second largest city in New England. The data they collected also gave her firsthand insight into some of the disparities brought to light by the pandemic. For example, the Hispanic population represented 21 percent of the community but made up nearly one-third of the positive cases.
“I was able to witness how disparities by race and neighborhood brought the health system and city together for data sharing and strengthened partnerships around equity, including starting a health equity taskforce as a result,” Brandes says.
In her full-time job as a project manager at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Brandes is a seasoned project leader. She says her practicum gave her the unique perspective to work directly inside a healthcare system to experience the dynamic, proactive work of healthcare on improving population health and equity.
Organizational Correlates of Treatment Facilities Offering Detoxification Services
Jennifer Murray MPH'21
Development of Statewide Cost Growth and Quality Benchmarks, and Primary Care Spending Targets in Connecticut
Jason Prignoli MPH'21
POSTED 1/26/2021 AT 09:52 AM