We have Amalia Plotogea here on this episode; and Amalia’s name might sound familiar because you may have read about her experience being a surveillance officer in Bangladesh to support the World Health Organization’s response to the Rohingya refugee crisis on our Blog.
I brought Amalia on the podcast to ask her more about her field epidemiology experience because you all wanted to hear more. She tells us about two different deployments she was on, which gave her two different experiences. We also talk about high stress environments and uncomfortable situations she has been in, and how all of these experiences prepared her for her field deployment. And the most inspiring part is that we get to see how she actually puts herself into such situations, because right off the bat Amalia tells us how uncomfortable she is feeling recording this very podcast episode!
After we hear about some of her experiences, Amalia tells us about the importance of building relationships, and trust, and how it helps with your career, and also expands on the tips she shared in her blog post, for those of us thinking about getting into public health fieldwork.
- About the two different deployments Amalia went on: one to Northern Canada, and the other to Bangladesh
- Stressful environments and experiences she has had that have prepared her for field work
- How to seek discomfort, as a “skill” to develop for field work
- Tips for individuals who may be thinking about getting into field work
- About the Canadian Field Epidemiology Program (CFEP) that Amalia was a part of, and other similar programs around the world (see resources section for links to these)
- How Amalia has embraced being a “generalist” versus a “specialist”
Amalia is former field epidemiologist currently working for the Public Health Agency of Canada. She received a BSc. in Health Sciences from University of Waterloo (2010) and a Masters Degree in Public Health Epidemiology from the University of Toronto (2013). She has had the opportunity to work in numerous contexts and with a diverse group of stakeholders from across the healthcare landscape in Canada: As a researcher and epidemiologist at local & provincial health authorities in Ontario and BC, as well as in Nunavut to support a tuberculosis community screening. She has also worked internationally as a trainee with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, and most recently as a surveillance officer with the World Health Organization supporting the Rohingya Refugee response.
Read Amalia’s reflection about her deployment to Rohingya in the blog post she wrote:
- Field Epidemiology programs around the world:
- Canadian Field Epidemiology Program
- US CDC Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS)
- European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET)
- Master of Philosophy (Applied Epidemiology) – Australian Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP)
- Find programs in more than 100 countries on the TEPHINET website.
- Become an Epidemiologists with Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)
- Books mentioned in this episode:
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