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Maybe Spring in coming: Photo by R. Kaylda

March 26 2020

All PHESC Partners Have Online Offerings

All PHESC partners have extensive online materials you can use for health equity-related professional development without having to leave your house:

Or, visit the PHESC website for links to all partners' materials organized by topic area.

Partner Profile

Throughout this project, we've had the pleasure of highlighting our PHESC partners and the work that they do. This month, we're excited to introduce Dr. Erica Di Ruggiero, the project lead and associate professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health.

Where do you live? I live in Woodbridge (aka Vaughan) – the city ‘above’ Toronto :)

Where do you work? I am an associate professor & Director, Global Health at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto.

What are some current projects that you’re working on? I am working on several initiatives – building a new Centre for Global Health at DLSPH and Directing the Collaborative Specialization in Global Health. As an educator, I teach global health policy, interdisciplinary global challenges, and population health intervention research, and continue to be energized by the intellectual curiosity and passion that students bring into the classroom. As a researcher, I am passionate about developing the theories and methods underpinning the study of policy and program interventions (or population health intervention research). I am conducting policy research on how issues such as non-communicable diseases (NCDs), work, health equity, and universal health coverage get and stay on the agendas of different institutions in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals, and assessing which health and social policies are effective in addressing precarious and informal working conditions.

What was one of the highlights of working with the PHESC partners? There are so many. I have the great privilege to lead a fabulous team and work with brilliant collaborators to improve equitable access to relevant training resources to enable public health units to improve health equity, strengthen public health practice and assess the health of populations. As someone who is passionate about population health intervention research, I am particularly proud of our contributions to courses on the effective design and implementation of policies and programs, and implementation research. 

What long-term impact do you hope PHESC will have on the public health workforce in Ontario? PHESC was built on and leverages many assets – evidence, partnerships, and prior extensive capacity building efforts aimed at strengthening and transforming the public health workforce. I sincerely hope that PHESC’s contributions will help ensure that Ontario’s public health workforce keeps health equity at the centre of their efforts in the face of an everchanging sociopolitical context and through the ever-changing COVID-19 pandemic. I am in awe of our public health officials' calm and clear communication during this pandemic. 

What’s the last book that you read and couldn’t put down? Behind the Beautiful Forevers – life, death, and hope in a Mumbai undercity by Katherine Boo. It’s a beautifully written book about – survival, the realities of precarity, stark inequalities, kinship and so much more.

This idyllic photo was taken by Erica in Guadeloupe, where she was born.