Health inequalities – what research is needed?
Over 100 participated in Department Day 2019 at the Department of Global Public Health and Primary Care (IGS), 8 May. The goal of these annual events is to inform, inspire and engage those working at IGS, as well as helping to build academic and social bonds across different groups at the Department.
The theme, “Health Inequalities”, was selected this year because it is relevant strategically to many of IGS’ research groups, as well as being intrinsic to IGS’ Vision: Better health, better society – or, as Department Leader, Guri Rørtveit, said in her welcome: with a better society, with less health inequality, we will all have better health. It is a theme that is relevant regionally, nationally and internationally.
Latest research on health inequalities
Ingvild Fossgard Sandøy, the Research Leader at IGS, and the rest of the Programme Committee for the Department Day, selected a diverse and complementary panel of speakers to present some of the latest research highlights in the field of health inequalities. The setting was the conference room on Fløyen.
The first 2 speakers were external experts in this area: Espen Dahl, from Oslo Metropolitan University (Oslomet), gave a talk entitled, “Social inequalities in health in Norway – so what? How can we generate better evidence on effective measures to reduce inequalities in health?” He has also spoken about this theme at the National Political Week. Katrine Løken, from the Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) gave a talk entitled, “Better health, less school dropout, or the other way around?”. (Learn more about Løken in a recent BT article).
The next 5 speakers came from various research groups and Centres at IGS. Ingeborg Forthun, a recent PhD graduate, spoke about “Social inequality in risk of getting a child with cerebral palsy”. Inger Haukenes, introduced a new paradigm for reflection on inequality: “Inequity in disability pension: an intersectional analysis”. Esperanza Diaz, reminded participants that migrant health is an important aspect of any discussion or research about health inequality. Her talk was entitled, “Migration health: a source of better health for all?” Ingunn Engebretsen introduced a new research project addressing a topic with global relevance, “Deprived childhood? TREAT Child Alcohol Use Disorder (C-AUD) in Eastern Uganda”.
Finally, Ole F Norheim spoke about important dimensions of the health inequality in his presentation, “Ethics, distributive justice and health inequalities”. In his presentation, Norheim introduced the term “precision public health”, focusing on how interventions that give priority to the worst off can have an important distributive effects – meaning that if we care about inequality and not only maximizing health in the population, a targeted approach can give better outcomes than universal ones.
The day was wrapped up with the awarding of prizes from posters, publications and teaching.
PhD candidates at IGS were invited to come with a poster they had presented during 2018. All participants were invited to vote on the best poster.
- First Prize for 3000NOK was awarded to Lina Lernevall for her poster: «Støtte til foreldre som har brannskadet barn på sykehus: Et integrative review» See Poster. Lina has been extensively involved in communicating her research activity. She was in the Researcher Grand Prix Final in 2017 and has written about her work and travels. Learn more.
- Second Prize for 2000NOK was awarded to Akeza Awealom Asgedom for his poster: “Inhalable dust exposure among particleboard workers in Ethiopia”. Akeza has also been active communicating his research activity. Learn more.
- Third Prize for 1000NOK was awarded to Marianne Strøm for her poster: "Chronic medical conditions in parents and risk of cerebral palsy in offspring".
There were 3 nominations for IGS’ Publication Prize, 2019:
- Litleskare S, Rortveit G, Eide GE, Hanevik K, Langeland N, Wensaas K-A (2018). Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Chronic Fatigue Ten Years After Giardia Infection: A Controlled Prospective Cohort Study. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol;16:1064-72 **not yet in print
- Solberg BS, Halmoy A, Engeland A, Igland J, Haavik J, Klungsoyr K (2018). Gender differences in psychiatric comorbidity: a population-based study of 40 000 adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Acta psychiatrica Scandinavica. 137:176-186
- WINNER: Smith-Strøm H, Igland J, Østbye T, Tell GS, Hausken MF, Graue M, Skeie S, Cooper JG, Iversen MM (2018). The Effect of Telemedicine Follow-up Care on Diabetes-Related Foot Ulcers: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Noninferiority Trial. Diabetes Care;41:96-103
Edvin Schei, Education Leader at IGS, gave out the Education Prize. Schei explained that there is increasing emphasis “top-down” from the Ministry and Higher Education organisations to the universities themselves, Faculties, Departments, programmes, etc., to improve the quality of teaching. At UiB, the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences has been a pioneer at testing incentive measures for teachers.
This year IGS has established an Education Prize that will be awarded to individuals or groups who have made a special effort to deliver good education. The aim of the prize is to
- Increase the status of teaching activity
- Encourage sharing of “best practice”: teachers teaching teachers
- Stimulate research in teaching practice
There were 3 nominations for this year’s prize. The winner has been working systematically to develop her teaching activities from several different approaches. Her students engage actively in their own learning process. She supports this by giving them individual feedback. She says of her own work that she was come to think of herself as a facilitator and mentor, as well as being a good team player.
The IGS Education Prize Committee decided to award this first year’s Prize to Ingrid Miljeteig. The Prize is worth 10 000NOK.