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Challenges in International Health

Deadline: 15 juli 2023

Short Courses

  • Face-to-face

  • Antwerp

15 ECTS-credits



Over de opleiding



Recent diseases outbreaks such as the Ebola virus and the COVID-19 pandemic, and humanitarian emergencies due to the climate crises have urged health actors globally to recognise the need for improved crisis preparedness and emergency response. Due to demographic transitions, countries are faced with a rise in non-communicable diseases? while the prevention and control of infectious diseases still pose major challenges. Policy makers and governments need to ensure universal access to good quality care for all while paying particular attention to people in vulnerable situations.  

Some dichotomies such as local versus global, tropical versus non-tropical, communicable versus non-communicable, imported versus domestic are losing their relevance. International health needs to encompass all these perspectives/dimensions. 

These challenges require context-adapted and multidisciplinary responses. Evidence from basic and implementation research will be important to guide decision makers and health workers across the globe. 


This 12-week course on “Challenges in International Health” will provide you with a good understanding of the complex picture of health challenges globally in general and in deprived, vulnerable settings in particular. Through case studies from various settings, you will analyse the social, anthropological, political, economic and ecological determinants of health, and address health problems from different perspectives including disease control, health service organisation and health policies. You will gain understanding of the complexity of health challenges and learn how to develop, implement, and evaluate health interventions and formulate communication strategies. The course will give you both the theoretical and practical toolsets you need to advance your career. 


Are you a physician, a nurse, a midwife, a biomedical or social scientist? Are you eager to broaden your horizons in health? Do you want to be better equipped to work in emergencies or with people in vulnerable situations globally? Do you have ambitions for a career in international health at local, national and international organizations? Or do you aim for a research career and want to pursue a PhD or an advanced Master's degree? Then this course is for you!  


You will learn from the scientific expertise and field experience of a multidisciplinary teaching team and from your collaboration with a diverse group of fellow students. You will be able to tailor your learning trajectory to your personal needs.  

You can follow this 15 ECTS course on “Challenges in International Health” as a standalone course, obtaining a credit certificate, or complement it with other courses (Introduction to Tropical Medicine; Research Approaches in International Health; Tropical Medicine and Clinical Decision-making) to obtain a Postgraduate Certificate (minimum 20 ECTS).

Postgraduate Certificate - Introduction to Tropical Medicine and Challenges in International Health

Postgraduate Certificate - Research and Challenges in International Health

Postgraduate Certificate - Advanced Tropical Medicine and Challenges in International Health

Postgraduate Certificate - Tropical Medicine and International Health

The postgraduate certificate combining “Challenges in International Health” and “Research Approaches in International Health” is equivalent to the basic part (the “core”) of the Master of Science in Tropical Medicine (MTM) or in Public Health (MPH) at ITM or a Master in International or Global Health in a tropEd member institution.

“Challenges in International Health” is organised in English in autumn (October-December) and in French in spring (April-June). 


Upon completion of the course, you will be able to: 

1. Regarding health problems prevention and control: 

  • Assess the importance and burden of a particular health problem in terms of frequency, severity, inequity, socio-economic cost and perception  
  • Discuss the different risk factors and determinants (ecological, genetic, social, economic, behavioral, health system related) of health and well-being of populations  
  • Formulate evidence-based and context-specific health programmes/interventions taking the available resources and the perspectives of stakeholders into account in both stable and emergency settings 
  • Address implementation challenges in the prevention and control of key health problems with particular attention for screening, surveillance, outbreak investigation, control and elimination and emergency responses using multisectoral approaches  

2. On health systems management and policies:  

  • Assess a variety of (local) health systems in terms of access, quality of care, organisation of services delivery, stewardship and intersectoral interfaces and collaborations  
  • Critically appraise the crisis preparedness and responsiveness of health systems and health policies to current and emerging challenges  
  • Discuss the major issues in international/global health policy and the development agenda (SDGs) including the role and agency of health policy actors at all levels  

3. Generic skills  

  • Effectively collaborate and clearly communicate in a multi-disciplinary and multi-cultural setting  
  • Search information in reliable sources and appraise the quality of evidence   
  • Show evidence of a critical and value-based attitude  
  • Choose and apply effective approaches for problem-analysis and problem-solving  
  • Develop life-long learning skills. 


€ 1590 EER / 4500 niet-EER

Course Leader(s)

  • Ludwig Apers

Course Coördinator(s)

  • Deogratias Katsuva

Course Administrator(s)

  • Anne Thoelen
  • Gerlinde Segers
  • Cathy Liu


  • tmih@itg.be