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The Global Health Initiative's (GHI) mission of improving health globally for those with the greatest need also extends to our own community, the people of Detroit. GHI, in collaboration with local partners, aims to improve health for underserved populations in the City of Detroit by conducting research, training the next generation of global health leaders, implementing community outreach initiatives, facilitating the adaptation of successful global health approaches to the City of Detroit, and exporting health innovations pioneered in Detroit.

Featured projects:

Vaccine research

Henry Ford Health System (HFHS) researchers are collaborating on local and global projects related to reducing barriers to vaccination for underserved populations. In Detroit, we are conducting qualitative research to better understand why Detroit has among the lowest rates of recommended childhood and adult immunizations in the United States. GHI is involved in a project aimed to increase adult immunization rates in Henry Ford outpatient clinics through electronic and mobile health interventions as well as educational programs for providers to improve knowledge about vaccines.

Improving health for juvenile detainees in Detroit

Rates of sexually transmitted diseases in juvenile detention centers in Detroit are extremely high. Together, GHI and public health agencies are responding to this challenge by developing a community outreach program that will provide screening and treatment interventions for incarcerated youth in Detroit. This project also includes a research component, which examines the sexual behavior of the adolescents using a social media and web-based intervention.

Improving hospital and community-level approaches to syphilis and HIV screening and treatment

In an effort to achieve our goal of improving health through research and community outreach initiatives, HFHS is collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to evaluate whether hospital emergency departments are an appropriate venue for identifying and treating syphilis and HIV among young men, who often only access care through emergency departments. This project uses rapid point-of-care testing and presumptive treatment to address the high syphilis and HIV rates among young African American men in Detroit.

Addressing asthma in Detroit

HFHS has a long-standing commitment to addressing the issue of asthma in Detroit, which affects about 40,000 children. Through extensive research, HFHS investigators have developed novel strategies to prevent and treat asthma. The aim of this project is to take successful strategies in Detroit, and adapt and export them to priority countries. In collaboration with HFHS School-Based and Community Health Program, GHI is currently implementing an asthma education project in three Detroit Public Schools.

HIV/STD  testing & treatment for homeless LGBTQ youth

Sexuality and gender identity, like all social determinants of health, powerfully inform health outcomes. In collaboration with the Ruth Ellis Center, GHI is conducting research with homeless LGBTQ youth with the aim of increasing healthcare access for the youth and competence in care for providers.