Health and Nutrition in Amazonian Ecuador
Language of Instruction: English
Contact Hours: 45 hours, 3 cr
Instructor: Trisha Lopez, PhD and Tod Swanson
The course is designed for premed majors and others planning careers in health related fields. It explores major issues in global health as applied to the context of Ecuador and the Amazonian region. These include the negotiation between biomedical assessment of health risks and solutions on the one hand and those of the indigenous medicine practiced by a majority of the population on the other. By focusing on the concrete case of the Amazon the course prepares students to understand the increasingly global context of contemporary healthcare practice. Highly recommended for premed students. The course imparts skills and experience that will be useful in working in cross-cultural medicine anywhere.
Learn how to listen to patients whose understanding of illness is culturally different.
Learn to understand health care policy comparatively.
Learn how chronic diseases and health problems sometimes result from development itself.
Understand the challenges of providing quality health care in low-resource environments
Understand how changing diet is affecting indigenous populations.
Understand how key health risks such as STD, diabetes, suicide, alcoholism, or domestic violence are shaped culturally.
Understand the connection between physical and behavioral health issues under differing cultural conditions.
Week Lecture/Activity Topics Covered Readings
Journal. Each student will keep a journal of their reflections on the materials in reading and lecture, field trips and other experiences. Students will be expected to submit journal entries every week, with a minimum of 4 entries per week. (25% of grade)
Participation. Student are expected to come to class ready prepared and ready to participate in class discussion. (25% of grade)
Final essays. Each student will submit a final essay. This will be an essay written in response to a set of questions provided by the instructor in the second week of the class. Students will be asked to integrate materials from readings, lectures, field trips and other experiences, along with some independent research in a coherent essay which will also address alternative policy and practices. (50% of grade)
Monday June 5
Week 1: June 5-10 The Ecuadorian Health care system and the problems it seeks to address
Monday June 5 Arrive in Quito
Tuesday June 6 Travel to Iyarina
Wednesday, June 7 Swanson, “Introduction to the History and Geography of Ecuador."
Thursday, June 8 Trisha Lopez. Introduction to the course
Swanson, “Quichua understanding of the (shared) body: Implications for Illness and Healing.” The limpia: cultural conflict over emergency assistance.
Friday, June 9 Trisha Lopez
Swanson, Quichua Shamanism and its implications for contemporary health.
Saturday and Sunday June 10-11 :
Work on Independent projects.
Week 2 (June 13-17): Traditional Diet, and Health Consequences Dietary Change,
Monday, June 12
Tuesday, June 13
Wednesday, June 14
Dr. William Waters The Ecuadorian Health Care System
Dr. William Waters Policy Alternatives: The Impact of Ecuadorian Social Protection on Health
Thursday, June 15
Dr. Wilma Freire and Dr. William Waters, Health and Nutritional conditions as shown in the Ecuadorian ENSANUT survey
Dr. William Waters, Aging and the demographic/epidemiologic transition, with a case study of indigenous older adults.
Friday, June 16
Saturday and Sunday June 17-18
Week 3-4: (June 20-24) Medical pluralism: Innovative experiments in integrating traditional medicine
Monday, June 19 Visit to Amopakin: Native midwife hospital
Tuesday, June 20 Visit to Rural health clinic in Chonta Punta
Wednesday, June 21 Visit to Tena Hospital
Thursday, June 22
Friday, June 23 Make chicha and maitus and traditional foodsThe limpia: cultural conflict over emergency assistance.
Saturday and Sunday June 24-25
Monday, June 26 Prepare interview questions. Cultural competency in a multi-cultural setting
Tuesday, June 27 Interview patients in Quichua homes
Wednesday, June 28 Course windup. Looking toward the future of global health, policy options and alternatives.
Thursday, June 29 Travel to the airport