Universitas Brawijaya (UB) cooperates with three foreign campuses, respectively The George Institute India, The International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research Bangladesh (icddr,b), and Health at Imperial College London to jointly combat the effects of climate change.
The Head of Indonesian Research Team, Prof. Sri Andarini in Malang, said the three campuses received research grants or NIHR research grants of Global Health Research Centers.
Funds of 10 million pounds received are used to conduct research in the field of climate change and Non-Communicable Diseases (PTM).
The NIHR Center has a strategic role in developing research, especially at Universitas Brawijaya so that researchers will be able to find solutions related to climate change and Non-Communicable Diseases (PTM).
She added that the NIHR has a strategic role to play in providing policy advice to local and national governments, especially to protect and assist the most vulnerable people in areas with high levels of pollution.
“In the long term, NIHR plays a strategic role in building a strong and sustainable health system to mitigate risks of environmental change. This is very important to create a resilient and healthy society,” said Prof. Andarini.
At the meeting of Global Health Research Center for Non-Communicable Diseases and Environmental Change in New Delhi on (17/11/2022) the four universities attempted to address the dual challenges of the rapidly growing of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) burden and global environmental changes in the country which is low and middle income countries.
These countries face the unique challenge of providing equitable and high-quality primary care services for the prevention and treatment of NCDs such as diabetes, kidney disease, hypertension and cardiovascular disease, and mental health. This is especially true among marginalized populations who are affected by – or have migrated because of – environmental risks and exposures including air pollution, flooding and heat waves.
The Research Center will focus on populations in Bangladesh, Indonesia and India which are most vulnerable to the health impacts of climate change.
Research priorities have been developed with a community focus, with empowerment, engagement, and outreach as a Research Center program where local populations and primary health care professionals will actively engage in the design, implementation, and evaluation of interventions.
“The Center will enable participating institutions to develop their capacity to provide the high-quality transdisciplinary research that policy makers and the public need to reduce the health impacts of climate change in our focus countries and beyond,” said Professor Christopher Millett, co-lead Center for Research and Professor of Public Health at Imperial College London.
Meanwhile Professor Widodo, Rector of Universitas Brawijaya said that UB as one of the leading universities in Indonesia, welcomed the research collaboration with the George Institute for Global Health and Imperial College, England, to strengthen our Center of Excellence.
“International collaboration is an important strategic goal, the key to providing the most extensive results for research activities at our university. We are committed to international collaboration and actively seek to establish cooperation, including in the field of public health,” said Prof. Widodo.
Water Salinity in Bangladesh
In Bangladesh, storm surge caused by a tropical cyclone has caused an increase in water salinity along the coastal belt. It has harmful health effects on the local population, including increased blood pressure, progressive kidney disease and gestational hypertension in pregnant women.
The International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research Bangladesh (icddr,b) will work to identify and test sustainable, cost-effective solutions to reduce salinity in water supplies in Khulna and Satkhira districts.
Plastic burning in Indonesia
Unregulated burning of plastic waste in Indonesia releases harmful chemicals, such as dioxins, which pollute the environment and cause negative health impacts including chronic lung disease, heart disease and cancer.
Researchers from Universitas Brawijaya will test various multisectoral interventions to reduce exposure to air pollutants due to burning plastic waste, especially in Malang Regency, East Java, targeting cardiovascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Increasing Food Diversity In India
The Public Distribution System in India provides food assistance to 800 million of low income people, which mostly consists of wheat and rice.
Some states have experimented with adding nuts, fresh fruit and vegetables, oils, and iodized salt but this diversification has not been evaluated.
The work of the Research Center will include implementing and evaluating cost-effective and sustainable changes to the food aid basket in the states of Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh. These changes aim to increase dietary diversity for NCD prevention, targeting diabetes and cardiovascular disease. (Humas UB/Translated by Iir)