The California-Mexico Health Initiative in conjunction with the Benemerita Universidad Autonoma de Puebla organized a “Summer Institute on Migration and Health” in Puebla, Mexico, from august 21-25, 2006.
The five days course provided participants with multidisciplinary instruction using theoretical, methodological and practical tools, and offered participants a better understanding of the complex relationships between migration and health.
The presentations were given by 21 professors (12 from Mexico and 8 from U.S.) and a total of 90 students (58 from Mexico and 32 from U.S) attended the course. The professors from the United States represented four UC campuses and 30 of the US students came from 10 UC campuses.
The topics covered during the 5 days Institute were:
- Mexico-United States migration overview
- Economic, social, political and health effects of migration
- Health implications from a binational public health perspective
- Infectious diseases and migration
- Indigenous populations: migration and health
- Agricultural workers: migration and health
- Health vulnerability and risks associated with migration
- Mental health and migration
- Gender issues and migration
- Nutrition/obesity/diabetes and migration
- Human Rights, Migrants and Health
- Methodological considerations
- Formulation and evaluation of binational projects
It also included a field trip to Huaquechula, a municipality with high emigration to the United States. There, the students had the opportunity to interact with the community, visit a rural health and community center and see first hand the benefits and problems related with migration.
At the end of the Institute the participants completed and evaluation. An overwhelmed majority of participants rated the event as excellent or good and expressed their interest of participate in future events related with Migration and Health.
Based on the successful experience of this first Summer Institute on Migration and Health, CMHI and BUAP are planning to organize the event every year, and also, exploring different possibilities to expand this unique academic opportunity.