Phuntsho Choden

Phuntsho Choden

Phuntsho Choden is the fifth faculty member from the Royal Institute of Health Sciences (RIHS) in Bhutan to spend a semester at the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) as a postgraduate fellow. With the goal of improving teaching and learning practices, she is taking courses in epidemiology, community health program evaluation and global health research. Choden, who earned her MPH in Thailand, sees very different approaches to teaching of epidemiology between eastern and western schools. With just seven faculty members leading the public health programs at RIHS, she says that Yale’s partnership has strengthened the program quite quickly. 

Choden’s prior research includes work on a mortality surveillance, burn injuries and low back pain as a result of occupational injuries. Upon her return to Bhutan she has plans to study alcohol and driving as well as alcohol and gender violence. In addition, she anticipates that the program will also study its own impact now that over 50 public health practitioners have graduated and been placed in some 20 health districts through the small country.

Tashi Norbu

Tashi Norbu, BN, MPH, is a post-graduate fellow in the Bhutanese Public Health Worker Training Program at the Yale School of Public Health. In Bhutan, he is a member of the public health faculty of the Royal Institute of Health Sciences where he teaches courses in biostatistics, psychology, mental health and nursing for a public health program designed for students who are already working in the country’s community health clinics and hospitals. He also lectures to pre-service students. 

Norbu, whose clinical specialty is mental health, is taking a course in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) epidemiology and public health at Yale. “ Only few in health in my country are trained in GIS,” says Norbu. “It will be helpful to both the RIHS and the health ministry.” 

Bhutan has many health programs, so Norbu also sees great relevance to the Community Health Program Evaluation class that he is taking at YSPH. “We need to do a better job evaluating programs and communicating findings to our health care workers,” says Norbu.

Nima Wangchuk

Building Better Health in Bhutan

When it comes to measuring success, the Himalayan nation of Bhutan doesn’t look to its gross domestic product or how many luxury goods their citizens own. Read more....