Global health is defined as “the goal of improving health for all people in all nations by promoting wellness and eliminating avoidable disease, disability, and death.” (Source: The U.S Commitment to Global Health: Recommendations for the Public and Private Sectors Committee on the US Commitment to Global Health. Institute of Medicine).

The Wake Forest School of Medicine Office of Global Health (OGH) works to positively impact global health using the expertise, energy and creativity of faculty, residents, students and staff. It serves as the conduit to facilitate:

  • interdisciplinary global health education
  • clinical outreach for underserved populations in our communities and globally
  • innovative service opportunities
  • research and collaborations
  • strong international and community partnerships

The office works collaboratively with hospitals in countries around the world, including China, Japan, Spain, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Costa Rica and Nicaragua. It also offers a Global Health Certificate program for faculty members, medical students, residents and fellows; provides scholarships to promote innovative research and educational initiatives at affiliated sites; and offers opportunities to serve, such as in “Wake Works” outreach projects in countries including Honduras, the Dominican Republic and Uganda.

As the institution’s hub for global health-related activities, information and advising, the OGH has initiated an ambitious strategic plan for ongoing growth to enhance the global health presence and capacity of the institution. Evidence of this can be seen in many ways:

  • increased student, resident and faculty global health activities
  • increased global health educational offerings and participation in these events
  • identification of unique educational modalities that benefit underserved populations locally (urban, rural, immigrant/refugees) and globally
  • increased reciprocation of student/faculty exchange at our affiliate and collaborative sites
  • development of research and educational partnerships and scholarship at our affiliate/collaborative sites
  • enhanced public awareness of the growing global health activities at WFSM
  • increased alumni and community support and involvement