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Published: 2008-05-30

Free online global health resource launched at Umeå University

NEWS Researchers at the Umeå Centre for Global Health Research for Global Health Research launched today ”Global Health Action”, a free online journal to address crucial voids in vital health information.

Global Health Action will report on results and evidence arising out of practical implementations of current knowledge, and publish papers that suggest strategies where none exist. A majority of the population living in the world’s poorest countries face the greatest burden of disease. These same populations are also those who are least likely to have access to critical information. This seriously constrains the implementation of effective policies and programmes aimed at improving the health of the poor.

The new journal aims to fuel a more concrete, hands-on approach to global health challenges in the context of a widening gap between the health conditions of rich and poor countries as well as their access to knowledge.

Today’s launch will take place in conjunction with a meeting of researchers from INDEPTH, a network of 37 demographic and health research sites in developing countries. The meeting is jointly organised with the World Health Organization (WHO) and hosted by the Umeå Centre. INDEPTH’s Executive Director Mr. Osman Sankoh will hold a short talk about the place of Global Health Action within the global research community.

Commenting on the new online resource, Chief Editor Stig Wall, M.D., Umeå University, responded, “Public health challenges in a global context are particularly found in the widening gaps between winners and losers of globalisation. To address these challenges, it is crucial not only to act constructively on what is already known and to evaluate the results, but also to establish what we yet have to learn and still need to implement. In short, what is needed is practical hands-on information that is widely available. Hence, the title of the journal – Global Health Action - and the format – Open Access – to provide content free-of-charge to anyone with access to a pc and the internet. We hope it will become a solid resource for researchers as well as policy-makers and anyone else involved in working to resolve public health burdens the world over.”

Commenting on the launch of the journal, Senior Publisher Anne Bindslev stated, “The content of a journal such as Global Health Action begs for open access, and it is therefore only natural that the Umeå Centre for Global Health and Co-Action Publishing should team up to ensure a great impact for the journal in years to come. It is a privilege to be a part of bringing such critical and practical information to those who need it most.”

The Umeå Centre for Global Health Research is located within the Division of Epidemiology and Public Health Sciences at Umeå University, which also acts as the WHO Collaborating Centre on Epidemiological Surveillance and Public Health Training. As part of an extensive worldwide network of institutions and collaborators, the Division has contributed to global health research and teaching for more than two decades, with work characterised by multidisciplinary socio-medical perspectives and combining quantitative and qualitative approaches.

Co-Action Publishing is a relatively new open access publisher based in Scandinavia and one of only a handful of publishing houses worldwide offering a true open access publishing model for scholarly journals.

For further information, please contact Professor Stig Wall, + 46 (0)70-6629075, E-mail: stig.wall@epiph.umu.se or Caroline Sutton at caroline.sutton@co-action.net or +46 (0)18 495 1126 (office), +47 90 69 05 06 (mobile).

More information on Global Health Action is available on the journal’s homepage at www.co-action.net/journals/GHA
For further information on Co-Action Publishing, see www.co-action.net

Editor: Hans Fällman