A journey of 9583 miles begins with a single…

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…drive to Durham! I spent the last 2 weeks in Durham, North Carolina, training with the rest of the team from Innovations in Healthcare (http://www.innovationsinhealthcare.org). They are a great group and were very welcoming to me.  I really felt like I was a part of their team right away!  Thanks to the whole team in Durham, the UK, and Kenya for helping me along!

The first few days was a lot of ‘information overload’ as I had to learn about what they do, how they do it, and begin planning for this assignment. My assignment is going to be very challenging because of the scope and the level of depth needed.  I will be analyzing the healthcare systems in Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, and possibly a few other countries in SE Asia.  This analysis will be very broad in scope, but will also be very detailed to ensure that we can uncover any potential gaps in the systems.  I will also be speaking with many different contacts that are involved in these healthcare systems to get their perspective on what works well and what could be improved.  Additionally, I will be trying to identify small, innovative companies that are trying to make an impact on the healthcare systems in the region.  The ultimate goal is that Innovations in Healthcare would be able to assist these small companies in scaling up their ideas to a regional or country level by providing them with guidance, helping them network, and potentially assisting with identifying more funding.

I really enjoyed the city of Durham too….the restaurants were amazing, the American Tobacco Historic District was so cool, and the Duke Gardens were beautiful. I was lucky enough to have  the Phillies minor league team (the Lehigh Valley IronPigs) welcome me there by sweeping the Durham Bulls in a 3 game series (sorry Kellie, Misty, and Jessica!).

I am just a few hours away from boarding my first of 2 flights to Singapore. I am flying out of Philadelphia to San Francisco (aka ‘the short flight’ because it is ONLY 6.5 hours), following by the San Francisco to Singapore flight which is 16.5 hours!  Because of the length of the 2nd flight and the direction of travel, I take off from San Francisco on July 6th and land in Singapore on July 8th…..I will be completely missing out on the luckiest day of the year (7/7)!

Wish me luck!