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Evidence-based Humanitarian Response

Priya Shete, a medical doctor and a 2010-12 S&T Policy Fellow at USAID in the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, uses her medical background to advise on policy issues. She provides technical guidance and assistance for the analysis of potential public health risks to populations in disasters and humanitarian emergencies worldwide.

"A big part of practicing medicine is learning how to figure people out and read situations," said Priya. That informal training translates well to working in policy. "It built my capacity for identifying critical stakeholders, which has been very useful."

Priya integrates evidence-based practices into humanitarian response. She served as key public health and medical technical advisor for the U.S. government response to the Haiti cholera outbreak and was deployed on a Disaster Assistance Response Team. In addition to Haiti, Priya also traveled to the Tunisia-Libyan border to assist with the assessment of refugee health issues.

She is used to a fast-paced, high-stakes setting, like the hospital emergency room environment. Her hands-on medical training is a practical skill set that is valuable in the field. Before starting her fellowship at the USAID, Priya completed her residency in internal medicine at the University of California-San Francisco, where she served patients at San Francisco General Hospital.

Priya Shete, MD; 2010-12 S&T Policy Fellow; Diplomacy, Security & Development Program; USAID

Disclaimer: The perspectives and opinions expressed in the above articles do not necessarily reflect the views of AAAS, the Science & Technology Policy Fellowships, the U.S. Government, or the U.S. Agency for International Development.