Dr. Jackson Williams (left), division chief of pediatric global health and Humana Endowed Chair in International Pediatrics at the University of Louisville, works with colleagues in Tamale, Ghana, as part of the AMPATH partnership.

The University of Louisville recently joined the AMPATH Consortium of academic health centers around the world with a focus on enhancing pediatric care in the AMPATH Ghana partnership.

“Our University of Louisville Pediatric Global Health team has been working with partners in Tamale, Ghana, for the last 14 years,” said Jackson Williams, MD, FAAP, DTM&H, division chief of pediatric global health and Humana Endowed Chair in International Pediatrics. “When we learned that AMPATH would also begin working at the same hospital and medical school in Northern Ghana, our group was thrilled at the idea of partnering with a consortium which has such a strong track record of effective global health collaboration.”  

AMPATH is the Academic Model Providing Access to Health Care. UofL joins 14 other universities and medical schools around the world working in partnership with public sector hospitals and medical schools in Ghana, Kenya, Mexico and Nepal.

In Ghana, the partnership is led by University for Development Studies School of Medicine (UDS-SoM) Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH) and NYU Grossman School of Medicine. The partnership launched in early 2019 with support provided to Indiana University from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and Eli Lilly and Company Foundation.

As part of the AMPATH Ghana partnership, UofL will embrace the AMPATH philosophy to “Lead with Care” by continuing to provide pediatric clinical care that supports research and education in child health. This will include augmenting sub-specialty care in pediatrics, hosting two-way exchange of learners, initiating research grants focused on child health and broadening UofL’s institutional support with partners in Tamale, Ghana.

“The AMPATH Consortium welcomes the University of Louisville and we look forward to working together to both enhance their existing work in Ghana while learning from their expertise in international pediatrics to grow all of the AMPATH partnerships,” said Adrian Gardner, MD, MPH, executive director of the AMPATH Consortium.

“We are very excited to work with our colleagues at University of Louisville to grow pediatric medicine education, research and care in Tamale, Ghana,” said Professor Stephen Tabiri, MD, PhD, FGCS, FACS, FWACS, MEd (Adm.) dean of UDS-SoM.  “We are looking forward to a very fruitful partnership.” 

Dr. Adam Atiku, CEO of Tamale Teaching Hospital added, “We are looking forward to further collaborating with our colleagues from the University of Louisville, with whom we have had over a decade-long partnership, as they join the AMPATH Consortium to continue in our collective quest to improve pediatric and child healthcare to clients within northern Ghana and beyond. We are very excited to see what we can achieve together for children in northern Ghana.”

The AMPATH Ghana partnership is based on a collaborative model that has helped to build a sustainable healthcare system over the past three decades in western Kenya.

“AMPATH Ghana’s long-term partnership model presents a unique opportunity for University of Louisville faculty and trainees. We look forward to building relationships with our counterparts to strengthen pediatric care delivery in Tamale and northern Ghana,” Rajesh Vedanthan, MD, MPH, MS, director of the Section for Global Health at the Institute for Excellence in Health Equity and associate professor in the Department of Population Health at NYU Langone.

In April, UofL faculty and residents traveled to Ghana and stayed in the AMPATH Ghana House with full-time faculty from NYU Grossman School of Medicine while working and training alongside Ghanaian faculty and residents.

“That experience further solidified our strong desire to be a part of the AMPATH Consortium. Seeing first-hand the projects which have already been started, how well they are partnered with our colleagues in Ghana, and how smoothly they managed the logistics in Ghana sealed the deal for our plans to join AMPATH,” said Williams. 

The AMPATH Consortium is led by Indiana University and includes Brown University, Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin, Duke University, Kaiser Permanente Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine, Linköping University (Sweden), Mount Sinai, NYU Langone Health, Purdue University, Stanford University Center for Innovation in Global Health, University of Alberta, University of California San Francisco, University of Toronto and the University of Virginia.

The division of pediatric global health at UofL was established as the international pediatrics division by George Rodgers, MD, more than 25 years ago with a partnership in Romania and other eastern European countries. The Humana Foundation generously provided funding for the division’s creation. Faculty in the division include Jackson Williams, MD; Nicole Bichir, MD; Sheridan Langford, MD; Bethany Hodge, MD, MPH (completed a rotation in AMPATH’s Kenya partnership in 2009); Dan Stewart, MD; Dan Blatt, MD; Mirzada Kurbasic, MD; and Kelly Frazier, MD. The division also has a partnership in Ecuador.