This blog was first published on March 24, 2010. It is edited and revised on its 7th anniversary. Do you remember your parents or grandparents shouting into a telephone, forcing their voice to reach the other end? The voice was the loudest if the call was intercontinental. My dad is much better these days, … Continue reading Giving meaning to technology
On the first day of spring 2017, the day of Nawroz, they have produced a report on happiness and called it World Happiness Report only to say that the developing, the poor, and the third world countries are also the unhappier countries. Are you serious? I am celebrating this Nawruz in St. John's Newfoundland, Canada, … Continue reading My 2 cents on World Happiness Report 2017
Speaking of suicide again, have you thought about the way we talk about it? We say commit suicide. I have done it too. One of my students in an online discussion raised this excellent point regarding the way we frame people into conditions through the use of our language. I want to quote her here, "saying a … Continue reading Commit suicide? Watch your language
Some stories are made in heaven. They are the kind of stories that start with once upon a time. They are the kind of stories that go down the history as legends because if they were told as events that happened, people just won't believe them. Unbelievable stories. Miraculous. In the history of soccer champions … Continue reading Barcelona comeback, reality or fiction!?
Have you ever thought of suicide? I am not talking about committing suicide, I am talking about suicide as a mental health problem. Now, when someone commits suicide, the public judgment is to blame the victim. They could be called weak, coward, crazy or mental. Guess what, the world we live in creates at least … Continue reading Have you thought of suicide?
There are many adages that urge change from within. Probably, the most memorable one is by Gandhi, "you must be the change you wish to see in the world." Although very attractive, I find problematic for a number of reasons. First, it promotes individualism. These adages carry a notion that puts individuals at the center of the … Continue reading Chang yourself vs chang the world
When I defended my PhD thesis, of course successfully, less or more, I felt more relieved of the burden than elated by the accomplishment. On the one hand, there were all these congratulatory messages from family and friends, on the other hand, I had a sense of emptiness. Though I had a job offer as … Continue reading Knowledge translation as an ongoing process
When I explain social determinants of health to people, the first reaction I get is 'Okay, that is very intuitive.' It makes sense if you are in poverty, your chances are that you will get sick more often than those who are not. So, what to do about. When I try to offer a solution … Continue reading Quality health care services as a social determinant of health
In early 2016, I wrote a composite story of a boy who broke the cycle of poverty in rural Afghanistan. The story's goal was to show how someone could break out of poverty, how long would it take, and how much effort was required. To give you a broader picture of the extent of poverty in Afghanistan, … Continue reading Addressing the root cause – poverty
Sustainability of health programs requires stakeholder at all levels to share the different meanings of sustainability and the responsibility for it, a paper recently published on Sustainability of Community Health Workers Program in Afghanistan. To understand the various perspectives on sustainability, I interviewed 63 key informants and conducted 11 focus groups at policy, management and administration, … Continue reading Sustainability requires shared understanding and responsibility