WHO WE ARE:
The International Health Organization, (IHO) is a Boston based non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and well being of under-served people in developing countries, primarily the Indian Sub-continent, as well as disenfranchised communities in the United States. From its base in Boston, Massachusetts (USA) and offices in India, IHO has implemented public health programs in Indian subcontinent and US. Over the past 25 years, IHO has developed a cost-effective, self-help model for improving the health of some of the poorest communities of South Asia in particular and developing countries in general.
IHO was incorporated in 1992 in Boston, Massachusetts as a non-profit, tax-exempt organization by a group of international health experts who had either worked in South Asia or were expatriate South Asian public health professionals working in the United States. IHO’s experts are drawn from a multidisciplinary pool of professionals in international health, public health, clinical medicine, laboratory sciences, health education, and health policy and health program development and analysis.
IHO mission: “Healthy Communities in a Healthy Environment!”
An integrated, holistic approach to improved health: Since 1992 IHO has advocated, developed and implemented health programs that are closely integrated with rural community development programs.
IHO believes that the serious health problems experienced by disenfranchised people in rural communities derive from and are often perpetuated by their poverty and environmental conditions. As a result, isolated attempts to treat diseases from a health perspective alone or to improve only certain aspects of their health will not be successful over time unless there are parallel improvements in the economic and environmental conditions which perpetuate the cycle of poor health, impoverishment and premature death by preventable diseases.
As a result, while IHO helps people through its public health programs, it simultaneously helps communities by improving their environmental and economic health as well. This philosophy forms the basis of IHO’s integrated and holistic health programs.
Disease prevention thru access to local healthcare: While IHO does NOT focus upon treatment of diseases; instead, its major emphasis is upon the prevention of disease by increasing access to existing local healthcare. It does this by linking rural communities with health care services that, at the present time, do not reach those communities. This method of disease prevention is successful, as well as cost-effective, because while it is managed by world-class health professionals, it’s staffed “in country” by people familiar with local cultural practices and procedures and makes use of local resources.
IHO serves as a network of physicians, educators and public health officials that can rapidly coordinate people and resources to help communities with a high incidence of preventable disease. IHO can coordinate primary health care, program design and management, or in-depth health interventions for at-risk populations with other organizations who want or need these services.
Details of our successful programs have been presented and discussed at several national and international meetings, including the annual conferences of the American Public Health Association (APHA) in the United States and the World Federation of Public Health Associations (WFPHA) in Indonesia since 1992.
Current status: After twenty-five years of its greatly successful and impactful programs, IHO currently runs its programs in several states of India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and other developing countries, and aims to expand them onto a larger target population. Subject to availability of funding and government approval, we intend to extend our highly cost-effective and integrated model of rural and community health to other countries as well.