9 November 2017

Global Health Case Challenge 2017 - Migrating Women's Health

This news is redirected by The Secretariat for Development Cooperation at SCIENCE from School of Global Health.

United Nations Population Fund, EIT Health and University of Copenhagen provide the case on Migrating Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health for the Global Health Case Challenge 2017.

The Challenge takes place in Copenhagen in November as part of the EIT Health Innovation Day programme. The event is arranged and hosted by the School of Global Health, Research Centre for Migration, Ethnicity and Health and SUND Innovation Hub, University of Copenhagen.

Join us at the open event on 24 November to hear and celebrate the 2017 winning solution. Sign up - click here.

SUND Dean Ulla Wewer opened the 2016 Global Health Case Challenge and 15 teams began 24 hours of hard work to find and present the most innovative and viable cross-disciplinary solution to the WHO Europe case challenge: How can availability, uptake and usage of rapid diagnostic tools as Point-of-Care-Tests be improved to facilitate responsible use of antibiotics in primary care?

This year we invite up to 90 students to take part of the challenge. You can read more about the selection and application process here: Sign up for the challenge. If you are looking for team members, try finding them in our Matchmaking Group on Facebook.

‘When you ask students from different fields of study and cultural backgrounds to work together, you get exponentially different perspectives on a problem. The ideas will be diverse, facilitating a completely different level of creative suggested solutions. At the same time, the aim of the School of Global Health is to strengthen the students’ job readiness and chances of networking across countries and fields of study, and here the case challenge format represents a unique opportunity’, Professor and Director of School of Global Health Flemming Konradsen.

What is a case challenge? In a case challenge student teams strive to develop the best solution to a real-world issue presented by a business or organization within 24 hours. Each team presents their solution both in writing and as a short oral pitch (10 minutes) to a jury. All teams will receive pitch-coaching training throughout the two days to prepare them for the final presentation.

In the 2017 case challenge the UNFPA and the University of Copenhagen invite students to spend 24 hours to develop solutions to a specific challenge within Migrating Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health. More information will be revealed on the day of the challenge, but here is a short introduction to the focus:

Global Migration is increasing due to armed conflicts, mass killings, persecution and pervasive sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). One of the consequences of this migration is the effect it has on the health and morbidity of the migrating population. They often have disease patterns that differ from those found in the national populations in the countries they moved through or settle in, and they often experience barriers in access to healthcare that are unlike those the national populations experience. These issues create exceptional challenges for health services and health professionals.

From January to November 2015, Europe witnessed 950,469 refugee and migrant arrivals through the Mediterranean, with Greece receiving the vast majority of arrivals (797,372). Those arriving by sea are fleeing the Syrian Arab Republic (49%), Afghanistan (20%), Iraq (8%), Eritrea (4%), Nigeria (2%), Pakistan (2%), Somalia (2%), Sudan (1%), Gambia (1%) and Mali (1%). The majority travel to Turkey, from where they undertake a dangerous journey by sea to Greece and then make their way through the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia and Austria in an attempt to reach their destination countries, mainly Germany and Sweden. New migrants arrive every day and accurate data remains a challenge. Refugees and migrants travel with an urgency to reach their destination from fear of border closures, potentially increased restrictions in asylum policies and the onset of winter.

It is a dangerous journey, with refugees and migrants often facing high levels of violence, extortion and exploitation along the way, as well as lack of access to healthcare. Single women travelling alone or with children, pregnant and lactating women, adolescent girls, unaccompanied children, early-married children — some with newborn babies — persons with disabilities, and elderly men and women are among those who are particularly at risk and require a coordinated and effective protection response.

An UNHCR/UNFPA report found that women and girl refugees and migrants’ sexual and reproductive health is at risk and that the current responses by governments, humanitarian actors, EU institutions and agencies and CSOs are inadequate. The findings emphasize the urgent need to scale up response efforts, implement innovative solutions and strengthen protection mechanisms and services across borders to adequately address the protection and health risks facing women and girls.