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International Health Faculty Receives Inaugural Toregeldy Sharmanov International Prize in Healthcare and Nutrition





Meike Schleiff, DrPH ’17, MSPH ’13, assistant scientist in the Department of International Health at the Bloomberg School, received the inaugural Toregeldy Sharmanov International Prize in Healthcare and Nutrition from the T. Sharmanov International Foundation. The prize recognizes scientists for their significant contributions to the realization of the universal right to health. It was awarded at a ceremony in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on October 19. 

Schleiff was honored for her work as co-editor of the book, Achieving Health for All: Primary Health Care in Action. The book details a comprehensive approach to achieving health for all that takes into account the collective responses of a community and how that shapes one’s access to care. Achieving Health for All documents the principles of primary health care from the past 40 years and includes detailed country case experiences from Bangladesh, Cuba, Ethiopia, Ghana, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. Particularly relevant in the time of COVID-19, the book demonstrates how primary health care is essential for achieving a resilient health system that adequately responds to emerging health threats.

The T. Sharmanov International Foundation was established in March 2021 to support projects of scientists in the field of health care and healthy nutrition. The Foundation is named in honor of Toregeldy Sharmanov, former Kazakh Minister of Health and a leader in the field of primary health care and medicine in Kazakhstan. Sharmanov founded the Kazakh Academy of Nutrition and helped to initiate the 1978 Almaty International Conference on Primary Health Care, where the Alma-Ata Declaration was adopted. 

Schleiff’s expertise is in primary health care and community health systems and her focus is on projects related to community health workers, particularly in advancing opportunities for women health workers. In addition to Schleiff, other recipients of the prize include Johns Hopkins Adjunct Professor David Bishai, as well as Kazakh doctors and infectious disease specialists Bakhyt Kosherova and Amangul Duisenova.