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UC Irvine School of Medicine—PANEL DISCUSSION: Health Disparities are Issues of Poverty

August 24, 2016 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm


Poverty is challenging enough; time and experience have revealed that good intentions to eradicate or alleviate suffering may in certain cases make problems associated with poverty and health disparities worse. This cruel irony is discussed Michael Matheson Miller’s documentary Poverty, Inc., and has been experienced by others first hand. 

BRI UC-Irvine Poverty, Inc. movie screening
Faith Njoku (L), UC Irvine-BRI chapter president at a Poverty, Inc. film screening last year.

Health Disparities are issues of poverty. What are possible solutions?

Join us as we welcome a panel of second year medical students from the University of California Irvine School of Medicine who participated in a medical mission trip in June 2016 to Tanzania, Panama and Indonesia. They will highlight the economic, social and health issues they encountered, adding to our understanding of the global aid business, global poverty, and the impact of both on health disparities. At this student-led panel discussion, we hope to ignite a rich, flexible conversation by will providing clear examples and practical solutions of this phenomenon.

Moderator: Faith Njoku, MS1, returned recently from a research initiative trip to Nigeria where she spent time with fellow BRI chapter leaders at the University of Ibadan College of Medicine in Oyo State. You can read about her trip here.

Student Presenters:

Megan Bernstein, MS2, represents the Ultrasound team that traveled to Tanzania. Megan served as the team leader and logistics coordinator for Team Tanzania, and has a particular interest in healthcare disparities in maternal and child health. She received her undergraduate degree and MS in Global Medicine at USC, and loves chatting with other students about how they can make an impact both locally and globally!

Alyssa Lo, MS2, represents the Ultrasound team that traveled to Panama. Her interests include women’s health, emergency medicine, and wellness. She is currently planning her wedding and proves that life does not stop in medical school. She is co-president of OGIG and vice president of AMWA.

Shella Raja, MS2 from Laguna Niguel, CA. She graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2015 with a BS in Biological Sciences and minors in Anthropology and Sustainability. She traveled with classmates to Tanzania in June, 2016 for the ultrasound program. Shella holds leadership roles in the Orange County Needle Exchange Program, Pediatric Interest Group, Students for Integrative Medicine, Team KiPOW, and she is the Medical Humanities representative for UCISOM. Her interests include public and global health, child health, nutrition, arts in health care, and sustainability in medicine.

Allen Yu Allen, MS2 at the UC Irvine School of Medicine. He completed his undergraduate studies at UC Berkeley, where he earned a BS in Nutritional Science. As a Nutrition major, Allen became interested in chronic diseases of nutrition imbalance, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and the metabolic syndrome. Here at UCI, he is creating resources to educate primary care providers in Orange County about ways to screen for and prevent early childhood obesity. Over the previous summer, Allen also traveled to Indonesia for a month-long ultrasound outreach program. In addition to educating Indonesian physicians on the proper use of ultrasound to diagnose a variety of medical conditions, he also carried out a research project correlating tobacco smoke exposure to ultrasound-measurable properties of vascular health and stroke risk.

Isaure Hostetter, MS2, represents the Ultrasound team that traveled to Panama, and will also speak about her experiences this summer with another health NGO in Guatemala. She is a part of UCI’s Program in Medical Education for the Latino Community (PRIME-LC) and her interests include activism in medicine and serving low-resource and linguistically and/or culturally marginalized populations. She is considering OB/GYN and emergency medicine, is on the board of OGIG, USIG, LMSA, and is one of two Ethics Co-Reps for her year.


August 24, 2016
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Faith Njoku


Tamkin Auditorium, UC Irvine School of Medicine
825 Health Sciences Rd
Irvine, CA 92617 United States
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