Message from the Chairperson

Message from the Chairperson

“Building on the present and moving towards the 21st century”

The twenty-first century has arrived with complex changes in demographic patterns, disease burdens, our environments and health policies. These changes are affecting all societies, rich and poor, developed and developing. The Department of Community Health Sciences (CHS) Aga Khan University Karachi brings together multi-disciplinary expertise in many areas to leverage different perspectives and approaches to public health issues. Our aim is to achieve a deeper understanding of, and make significant contributions to, the “research-policy-implementation” cycle for the multifaceted fields of public health. 

CHS aims to investigate policies that affect general and reproductive health, environment and health systems of the most under privileged urban and rural populations of Pakistan. Our faculty members are engaged in cutting-edge research in such areas as maternal and child health, women empowerment, epidemiology of chronic non-communicable diseases, health financing, nutritional surveillance, e health, health systems development and policy formulation to mention a few. 

CHS has a strong educational mandate. Besides being 18% of the undergraduate MBBS curriculum, executing 24/7 short certified national, regional and international courses, a four year CPSP approved residency program is also in place. Moreover CHS also has two PMDC accredited graduate programs (MSc EB & MSc HPM). Our alumni have taken positions of leadership in top universities, in national and international NGOs as well as in a broad range of public health institutions (including the World Bank, UNICEF, Ministries of health).  

Future Direction

As part of its educational roadmap CHS is heading towards flexible and weekend courses in MSc HPM. Some courses have been opened for larger audience as standalone courses giving the opportunity to several managers in NGOs and public sector organizations to have a flavor of graduate level courses and accumulate credits if they decide to enter into formal degree programs offered by CHS-AKU at a later stage. Discussions are underway to consider a two year HEC recognized PMDC accredited MPH program.  This also enhances class size and participants learn in an environment of cross fertilization of ideas. Moving ahead Masters Programs of CHS will provide a platform to launch and contribute towards FHS PhD program (Public Health stream). ​

CHS currently has 22 active grants. Given the research groups in health systems and policy, Non-communicable diseases and environmental health and population & reproductive health the department is now well poised to advance as a Centre of Excellence (COE) in Public health with a strong mandate to improve health of the population through its educational and research initiatives. A School of Public Health would be a strong pillar of this COE as part of the overall goal of human resource development.

Having completed more than two decades as a department successfully, we look forward to even better quality of education and research endeavors in the times to come.

Dr Fauziah Rabbani Abid
The Noordin M. Thobani
Professor & Chairperson, Department of Community Health Sciences