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University asks medical schools to focus on UN anchor goals

Dr Robert Armstrong. photo | FRANCIS NDERITU
Dr Robert Armstrong. photo | FRANCIS NDERITU 

Learning institutions should adopt training that incorporates UN’s sustainable development goals, a forum in Mombasa heard last week.

A two-day symposium, spearheaded by the Aga Khan University’s (AKU’s) Medical College, concluded that academic institutions have a key role in helping countries to meet the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) running up to 2030.

AKU and Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) partnered with Fudan University and Tsinghua University of China, and other local partners in organising the conference.

“Academic institutions have a responsibility to develop the 21st century health professionals who can provide the leadership needed to achieve this transformation in health and wellbeing,” AKU Medical College dean Robert Armstrong said.

“New approaches to education and a focus on improved collaboration in applied and translational research will be essential for success.”

The symposium discussed common areas of interest, including humanities and global health, primary healthcare, women and child health and infectious diseases.

The topics were identified as key to achieving universal health care being championed by the World Health Organisation (WHO). “We believe there are special opportunities for the AKDN and universities to work together to benefit the populations where we have presence and capacity to have impact,” Dr Armstrong said.

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