Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Malawi, Nurses, Avian Flu

Back from a great vacation in the southwestern portion of the U.S. (Bryce, Zion and Grand Canyon). Getting away from it all definitely helps with developing perspective, studying, just plan having fun.

For example, even though I didn't think about it while hiking in Utah and Arizona, I'm now mentally and emotionally set to prepare for my four-month field research project, which begins in June. I'll be going to Malawi to look at the nursing shortage there, finding out what draws nurses to emigrate, how and why they stay or go and a large UK-funded program to try to make it easier for nurses to stay in Malawi. More on that as the semester, and my plans, progress.

Am also exploring a new database on women's health from the US government.

And am pleased to see that my friend and colleague Dick Thompson, formerly of the World Health Organization, is blogging about risk communications and a possible H5N1 pandemic. His latest post: a call for an open meeting--that includes folks from beyond the expert flu community--to really try to nail down just how much of a threat H5N1. His point being that several years have passed now since the threat was first identified, we should have a better sense by now.