Online Workshop: Making Space for Social Medicine in Medical School Curricula: Transnational Perspectives and Pedagogy

Posted on April 13, 2022

Illness and healing can never fully be separated from social context. Yet while medical education around the world has legible standards for bioscientific subject materials, we are far more uneven in how we teach the social sciences necessary for the study of health and medicine.  This event, sponsored by the Global Social Medicine Network, brings together educators from four continents on the challenges and opportunities for teaching social medicine in the 21st century.


Junji Haruta (Keio University, Japan)

Dr. Junji Haruta is a Japan Primary Care Association Certified Family Physician and Japan Society for Medical Education Certified Medical Education Specialist. He has been practicing medicine and teaching medical school students in urban area. His research themes focus on interprofessional education, community medicine and primary care. His most recent paper, “How do medical students learn about SDH in the community? A qualitative study with a realist approach”, can be found in Medical Teacher. He graduated from the Asahikawa Medical University, School of Medicine, and is a PhD in Medical education in Tokyo University.

Helena Hansen (University of California Los Angeles, US)

Helena Hansen, an MD, Ph.D. psychiatrist-anthropologist, is Professor of Psychiatry and Chair of Research Theme in Translational Social Science and Health Equity at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. She is the author of three books: Addicted to Christ: Remaking Men in Puerto Rican Pentecostal Drug Ministries; Structural Competency in Medicine and Mental Health: A Case-Based Approach to Treating the Social Determinants of Health; and Whiteout: How Racial Capitalism Changed the Color of Heroin in America (forthcoming). She has received numerous awards, including an honorary doctorate from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and election to the National Academy of Medicine.

David Jones (Harvard University, US)

Trained in psychiatry and history of science, David Jones is the Ackerman Professor of the Culture of Medicine at Harvard University. His research has explored the causes and meanings of health inequalities (Rationalizing Epidemics: Meanings and Uses of American Indian Mortality since 1600) and decision making in cardiac therapeutics (Broken Hearts: The Tangled History of Cardiac Care). He is now pursuing three new projects, on the evolution of coronary artery surgery, on heart disease and cardiac therapeutics in India, and on the threat of air pollution to health. He teaches the history of medicine, medical ethics, and social medicine at Harvard College and Harvard Medical School.

Faculty Guide

The Burden of Disease Slides

How do we achieve health for all?

How do we achieve health for all? Slides 

Making the Case for History in Medical education PDF

All Health Is Global Health, All Medicine Is Social Medicine: Integrating the Social Sciences Into the Preclinical Curriculum PDF

Kenneth Camargo (Rio de Janeiro State University, Brazil)

Kenneth Rochel de Camargo, Jr. graduated in Medicine in 1983, followed by a Residency in Social and Preventive Medicine and a Masters Degree in the same area. Doctor degree in Public Health in 1993. All titles from Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (UERJ), Brazil. Post-doctoral fellowship 2000-2001 at the Department of Social Studies of Medicine, McGill University, Canada. Dr. Camargo worked as a physician at the university’s (UERJ) hospital 1985-1995. Since 1995 he is a full-time tenured professor at the Instituto de Medicina Social at the same University, one of the leading institutions in graduate teaching and research in public health in Brazil, where he is currently a full professor. The key focus of his research is on the production, diffusion and utilization of biomedical knowledge, applying the theoretical and methodological tools of science studies. The main themes of his research have dealt with HIV/AIDS, sexuality, health care, medicalization and the spread of health misinformation on the internet.

Vacinas: Uma grande conquistada saúde pública

Série: Estudos em Saúde Coletiva Série Didática

Série: Estudos em Saúde Coletiva #220


Kelly Knight (University of California San Francisco, US)

Kelly Ray Knight, PhD is a medical anthropologist, Professor and Vice-Chair in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at University of California – San Francisco (UCSF).  Her work centers on the experiences of poverty and addiction in clinical and community contexts; racism, homelessness and health disparities; and, health conditions produced or exacerbated by structural violence. Dr. Knight is currently Principal Investigator and Co-investigator on NIH-funded ethnographic studies examining social and policy implications of homelessness and the clinical and social consequences of the US opioid overdose crisis. Dr. Knight has published 65 peer-reviewed journal articles and an awarding-winning, book-length ethnographic study of people who are opioid-dependent, unstably housed and pregnant, addicted.pregnant.poor (Duke University Press, 2015). She serves as Core Curricular Liaison for the Anti-Oppressive Curriculum Initiate in the UCSF School of Medicine and as Director of Qualitative Research for the Benioff Housing and Homelessness Initiative at the UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations.  Concurrent to her 25+ year research career, she served a co-founder and volunteer site coordinator for a syringe access program serving homeless and unstably housed transwomen and women-identified people and as an outreach worker in single-room occupancy hotels, both in San Francisco, CA where she lives.

Carla Tsampiras (University of Cape Town, South Africa)

Carla Tsampiras is a senior lecturer in Medical and Health Humanities (MHH) in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. She is a social historian of health interested in the relationships between narratives and ideas about gender, ‘race’, class, sexuality, and health (individual and planetary). She has written on the early years of the AIDS epidemic in South Africa; gender violence and slavery in the Cape colony; MHH in health sciences education and the development of the field of MHH in the region. Her current research work is concerned with flesh foods (meat), gender, power, and violence. She is a member of the Southern African Historical Society (SAHS), sits on the  Environmental Humanities South working group, is a board member of the Institute for Medical Humanities at Durham, and is a founding member of the Medical and Health Humanities Africa network (

Nathan Ha & Marco Ramos (Yale University, US)

Nathan Ha is a resident in the department of psychiatry at Yale. He earned his MD from Hofstra Northwell and his PhD from Princeton in the history of science, and gender and sexuality studies. He has been a fellow at the UCLA Institute for Society and Genetics. His research focuses on the dynamic relationship between patients, clinicians, and researchers in shaping understandings of human health and difference. He has developed and taught classes on the history of psychiatry; LGBTQ health; race, gender and science. He is currently working on projects in the field of medical education, especially to improve care for racial and sexual minorities.

Marco Ramos, MD PhD, is a Psychiatry Resident and Lecturer in the History of Medicine at Yale University. His historical research focuses on mental health, activism, and revolutionary politics in Latin America. His writing has appeared in clinical, academic, and cultural journals, including The American Historical Review,  Bulletin of the History of MedicineJAMALancet, and Boston Review. He is currently turning his dissertation into a book, tentatively titled Specters of Justice: Mental Health and Terror in Cold War Argentina. He will start as Assistant Professor in the Program for the History of Science and Medicine at Yale University in July 2022.

Barry Saunders (University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill, US)

Barry Saunders is a faculty member in the Department of Social Medicine at UNC-Chapel Hill. He is a recovering emergency physician with interdisciplinary humanities training (religion & culture). He teaches in and co-directs the preclinical medical course Social and Health Systems. He coordinates Social Medicine electives and works to incorporate STS perspectives and social justice concerns into med school science teaching. As scholar, Saunders works on bioscientific and clinical knowledge-making. He studies how biomedicine approaches evidence, how bodily infirmities are reshaped by new tech, and how medicine’s methods and rituals relate to older modes of discipline and biopower. His 2008 book CT Suitewas an ethnography of computed tomography at the cusp of film and digital networks. He is lately working on an intellectual history of “chiasms”—anatomical, rhetorical, philosophical—in late modernity.

UNC Social Medicine Coursewares 

Organised by: Jeremy Greene, Helena Hansen, Junko Kitanaka, Francisco Ortega, and Michelle Pentecost

Meeting Recording:

Access Passcode:       6-1-22talk


1 June 2022

Los Angeles, USA                   13:00 PDT
New York, USA                        16:00 EDT
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil              17:00 BRT
London, United Kingdom      21:00 BST
Barcelona, Spain                    22:00 CEST
Cape Town, South Africa      22:00 SAST


2 June 2022

Tokyo, Japan                           05:00 JST

FREE tickets

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