The George Institute For Global Health
United Kingdom

PhD Scholarship Opportunity: Empowering Community Health Workers to Strengthen Health Systems Worldwide (via UNSW Scientia Scholarship Scheme)

Type of career: 
Postgraduate opportunities
Application close date: 
Contact name: 
Leanne Tea

An opportunity for a prestigious UNSW Scientia PhD scholarships in public health research at The George Institute for Global Health, comprising:

•    $40,000 per annum stipend for four years (tax free)

•    Tuition fees covered for the full 4-year period (for international and local students)

•    Coaching and mentoring as part of your highly personalized career and leadership development plan

•    Up to $10,000 each year to build your career and support your international research collaborations.

We're seeking a suitable student to work on the research  'Empowering Community Health Workers to Strengthen Health Systems Worldwide'. Low and middle income countries are home to the greatest number of deaths due to chronic diseases and their health systems are under severe pressure to tackle this problem. Training more doctors in sufficient supply is not feasible and innovative strategies are needed. Over the last ten years we have trained hundreds of village-based, non-physician health workers (NPHWs) in India and equipped them with state-of-the-art decision support using mobile devices. We have demonstrated in randomised trials that these workers can successfully conduct village-based screening and referral of individuals at high risk to the doctor.

The next ambitious stage is to understand whether these task-shifting models can be expanded and implemented at scale elsewhere. This PhD project will look at (1) conduct needs analyses to understand current NPHW capacity in Africa, the Asia-Pacific and South America; (2) develop training packages in collaboration with local policy-makers; and (3) test their feasibility and acceptability in selected countries.

The supervisory team is Professor David Peiris, The George Institute for Global Health (UNSW) and Associate Professor Rohina Joshi and Dr Padmanesan Narasimhan, School of Public Health and Community Medicine (UNSW)

Please submit your applications via the UNSW website:

The UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme is part of UNSW’s dedication to harnessing our cutting-edge research to solve complex problems and improve the lives of people in local and global communities. Scientia scholars will have a strong commitment to making a difference in the world with demonstrated potential for contributing to the social engagement and/or global impact pillars of the UNSW 2025 Strategy. The Scientia Scheme is targeted in that applicants apply to a specific research area with an identified supervisory team and application is by nomination.  To learn more about the Scientia PhD scholarship, click here: