While healthcare and training for physicians continues to improve over the years, one important aspect of training and research is often overlooked. That is the influence of the environment and its associated impacts on our health, specifically, the impact it has on children.
My stretch experience is composed of my involvement with The Children’s Environmental Health Clinic (ChEHC) here in Edmonton. ChEHC is dedicated to
understanding and managing child health concerns associated with
environmental exposures (chemical, biological, physical and social).
My work at the ChEHC is to assist with the development of a research paper requested by the World Health Organization. So far it has been a great experience, as we are examining the extent to which environmental health is taught and promoted at various universities in different programs across Canada and if physicians have any training in treating the consequences of a negative environment on our health.
So far, a highlight of my experience is the opportunity to engage with and learn from many of the individuals here at ChEHC. Before starting my stretch, I knew very little about how important it is to embrace the environmental effects on our health, and how little it is actually taught in universities.
I highly recommend to any future Peter Lougheed Leadership College scholars who are looking for an idea for their stretch, to not be afraid to do something they know very little about. In addition, don’t think that you must go abroad to make the best out of your stretch experience. I know that was how I felt, but now that I’ve been out there stretching, I don’t regret it at all.
My experience so far has influenced me to think about pursuing a masters degree in Environmental Health (If it’s provided that is). People often confuse Public Health from Environmental Health. While they are related, they should be treated separately.
Thank you Dr. Buka and Dr. Brennan for this amazing opportunity!
By: Sadra Aghazadeh