Global Health Seminar: Lessons from 2014-2015 Ebola Epidemic: An On-The-Ground Perspective


McIntyre Medical Building Charles F. Martin Theatre - Room 504, 3655 promenade Sir William Osler, Montreal, QC, H3G 1Y6, CA

McGill Global Health Programs is excited to welcome Dr. Nahid Bhadelia from the Boston University School of Medicine to discuss emerging pathogens, challenges in catching outbreaks early and some specific health systems preparedness issues raised by the Ebola epidemic. Her focus is to identify what elements of health systems preparedness are the most efficient to prevent and handle outbreaks.


In the aftermath of the 2014-2015 Ebola Epidemic, there have been many retrospective analyses of the failures and successes of the response. By looking at the granular realities of the on the ground response, important lessons can be elucidated about where the international response worked and fell short, what aspects of healthcare systems provide resilience against outbreaks and some inherent ethical dilemmas related to care of patients with emerging infectious diseases. This talk combines some of this discussion against the backdrop of personal experience.  

About our speaker:

Dr. Nahid Bhadelia is an infectious diseases physician and her work focuses on identifying health systems interventions that can reduce the impact of outbreaks on communities, as well as the clinical care and infection control of dangerous pathogens such as Ebola. She is the medical director of Special Pathogens Patient Care Unit designed to care for patients with highly communicable infections at Boston Medical Center. She also serves as the Director of Infection Control and Medical Response at Boston University’s maximum containment biosafety level 4 facilities, National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories, dedicated to developing diagnostics and therapeutics for novel infections.

During the West African Ebola epidemic, she served as a clinician in several Ebola treatment units, working with World Health Organization and Partners in Health. She served as a Senior Policy and Technical Advisor to Partners in Health for their Ebola response program in Sierra Leone. Dr. Bhadelia has previously taught with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US and in Taiwan to help increase healthcare worker readiness to combat emerging infections. She serves on national and interagency groups focused on medical countermeasures, the intersection between research and clinical care for emerging pathogens. She is also Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Tufts Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, teaching on “Health, Human Security and Emerging Pathogens.”

Dr. Bhadelia has previously worked on projects with United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Dr. Bhadelia received her undergraduate and medical degrees from Tufts University. Aside from her clinical training in infectious diseases, she has a master’s degree in international affairs from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts and a background in health and human security with a focus on the impact of pandemics on macro level health indicators and community security.

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