Archived Field Experiences Aarti Agarwal, HIV



Archived Field Experiences Aarti Agarwal, HIV
Archived Field Experiences India Summer Program 2011 Aarti Agarwal, HIV/AIDS Research
Aarti spent the summer of 2011 in southern India through
an ILR program that collaborates with an NGO, SVYM, in
Mysore, India. She spent the first two weeks taking
academic courses, followed by a four-week service learning
project. The courses she took Indian Culture and
Civilization, Kannada lessons, Gender Relations in India,
and Healthcare in India enabled her to be more prepared
for her service project for the following weeks. After the
courses, she was immersed in the healthcare field of India.
Her project focused on HIV/AIDS and Health and Sanitation
in the local community. She created a survey to analyze the
effectiveness of an initiative put in place by the NGOs to increase the health
status and awareness of local villages. She also collaborated with another
Cornell student to help the organization keep better records of their
HIV/AIDS patients and compile their current data into a usable format. The
last two weeks of her field experience she worked at an obstetric and
gynecologic clinic where she saw patients with the doctor and helped them
make better dietary choices. She found working in these areas of India as an
enriching experience, where she learned more than can be learned in any
classroom setting.
Henry Huang, HIV/AIDS Research
In the summer of 2011, Henry traveled to Mysore,
India working for the Swami Vivekananda Youth
Movement, a grassroots NGO focused on health and
education. During his eight weeks, Henry was a part
of several ongoing projects including a village
sanitation project. He carried out surveys to
determine the efficacy of the ongoing interventions
and attended several large meetings to help
coordinate efforts between local officials, public health
workers, and citizens. Henry ultimately designed a
system which allows local field offices to submit
reports electronically for data collation and analysis, saving time and helping
to better coordinate efforts. Henry also worked in the Vivekananda
Memorial Hospital where he shadowed physicians, attended rounds, and
volunteered to help patients. He also assisted with an ongoing reserach
project, the creation of health literature for a public media campaign, and
staff training. However, Henry’s main project was with a HIV/AIDS testing
and treatment campaign named Samastha that cares for persons infected
Archived Field Experiences India Summer Program 2011 with HIV and children who have been orphaned by HIV. When he was not
working with patients or attending weekly support group meetings, Henry
was working on an epidemiological research project trying to identify trends,
hotspots, and vital statistics. As a result of his work, Henry implemented
two computer programs: one which will automatically flag patients in need
of follow-up or additional care and another which automatically geomaps
cases using de-identified data. The program was a great success,
identifying several hundred patients had slipped between the cracks and
needed visits by local health workers. After creating manuals and training
staff, SVYM embraced the programs and both are still in use today. In his
free time, Henry helped to upgrade and overhaul the network infrastructure
at several SVYM locations, facilitate the donation of laptops from Cornell
University, and teach some students an SVYM school above his office at
Jessica Sparling, Public Health Promotion
During the summer of 2011, Jess spent
eight weeks in Karnataka state in
southern India. For the first two weeks,
she took classes on the Indian Healthcare
System, Kannada (the local language),
Gender Roles and Culture with the other
Global Health and ILR students in
Mysore. For the following six weeks, Jess
completed her GSL project in a 10-bed
rural primary care hospital in
Kenchanahalli. Here, she met Indians who were passionate about providing
quality, affordable healthcare (both “western” and traditional medicine) to
local impoverished people. Their compassion, drive and dedication were
absolutely inspiring. Jess worked mostly in public health promotion, creating
a 12-month calendar promoting the benefits of yoga for overall health and
wellness – this document is going to be distributed to every household in the
district where she worked. She also completed documents specifically for
hospital use, including a series of medicine labels for the Ayurvedic
medicines produced in the hospital.
Archived Field Experiences India Summer Program 2011 Samrawit Yisahak, Qualitative Diabetes Research & Dietary
Analysis of School Menu
For her global health field experience, Samrawit spent
eight-weeks in Saragur, a small rural town in the state
of Karnataka. She lived and worked in Vivekananda
Memorial Hospital (VMH), a 90-bed facility offering
multi-specialty secondary health care. Her main project
was to design and conduct a qualitative study assessing
patient-perspectives on the barriers to diabetes
care.Through this project, she was able to interact with
various diabetes patients in rural villages and learn more
about the rising burden of non-communicable diseases in
India. Samrawit also worked on a dietary assessment of
a school menu at Viveka Tribal Center for Learning in
Hosahalli. The whole experience was a huge learning opportunity and
invaluable in confirming her career interest in global health. Aside from her
formal projects, she also got the chance to immerse herself in the culture
and enjoy the real India. This picture was taken when Samrawit was
preparing to go to an Indian wedding, dressed in a sari for the first time.