Physician, humanitarian and global health expert Dr. David Walton will be the featured speaker at the University of the Virgin Islands Alfred O. Heath Distinguished Lecture Series. The series will be held at 6 p.m. on Friday, March 20, in the Chase Auditorium room B110 on UVI's St. Thomas campus and will be videoconferenced to room 401 in the Melvin Evans Center on the St. Croix campus.
The title of Dr. Walton's lecture is "Bringing Hope and Healthcare to Haiti."
Only in his early 30s, the Harvard-trained Dr. Walton has spent much of his medical career caring for some of Haiti's most sick and needy. Dr. Walton earned a B.A. from Augustana College in 1998. Upon entering Harvard Medical School in 1999, Dr. Walton met Dr. Paul Farmer, a professor and founder of Partners in Health. Partners in Health (PIH) is a Boston-based non-profit organization that provides preferential health care options for the poor in six countries - Haiti, Peru, Russia, Lesotho, Malawi and Rwanda. Dr. Walton made his first trip to Haiti in 1999 and has returned to volunteer there with PIH every year since, now spending eight months a year in the Caribbean country.
In Haiti Dr. Walton serves as the associate director of the Hôpital de Lascahobas, where he directs and supervises healthcare professionals and community health workers, leads HIV and sexually transmitted disease prevention programs and treats patients who have HIV, TB and other chronic diseases. He also goes on home visits, completes administrative activities and conducts operational research.
Dr. Walton is also currently an associate physician and hospitalist in the Division of Social Medicine and Health Inequalities at Bringham and Women's Hospital and an instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. His most recent projects have focused on the improvement of healthcare delivery in central Haiti. He also supervises Haitian resident physicians. Dr. Walton focuses on case-based teaching and providing informal and formal evaluations and feedback to the residents.
Dr. Walton has been featured in various newspapers, magazines and television shows, including 60 Minutes. In addition to a medical degree from Harvard Medical School, Dr. Walton also holds a Master's of Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health.
Admission to the lecture series is free and seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Alfred O. Heath Distinguished Lecture Series offers the public a setting in which to hear nationally and internationally recognized individuals discuss issues related to the challenges and opportunities faced by the global community. The series is the University's way of recognizing and celebrating the outstanding person and accomplished citizen that is Dr. Alfred O. Heath. As a UVI trustee emeritus and chair of the Foundation for the University of the Virgin Islands, Dr. Heath is an ardent, longtime supporter of the mission of the University.
Past presenters of the Alfred O. Heath Distinguished Lecture Series were renowned poet and activist Nikki Giovanni, award-winning veteran journalist Charlayne Hunter-Gault, author and activist Randall Robinson, Caribbean Development Bank President Dr. Compton Bourne and former member of the U.S. House of Representatives the Hon. Ronald Dellums.
For more information about the Alfred O. Heath Distinguished Lecture Series call Michelle Smitherman at 693-1042.