Fogarty International Center grant — India

Dr. Linda Cottler(center) leads a project that provides fellowships for Indian behavioral health professionals like Sonam Ongmu Lasopa(left) and Dr. Nikhil Jain, both based in Gangtok, Sikkim in India. Photo by Maria Belen Farias.

Behavioral health training

Linda B. Cottler, Ph.D., M.P.H., a professor and chair of the department of epidemiology in UF’s colleges of Public Health and Health Professions and Medicine, and associate dean of research and planning for PHHP, leads a program that offers behavioral health training to scientists in India. The program is designed to increase research opportunities between the University of Florida and Indian partners. Funded by a prestigious grant from National Institutes of Health’s Fogarty International Center, the project concentrates on the behavioral health issues of greatest concern to the area — addiction, suicide and mental health. The focus is on partnerships in Bangalore and two northeastern Indian cities in the foothills of the Himalyan Mountains: Gangtok, Sikkim, and Tezpur, Assam. A major aim of the project is to address India’s demand for behavioral health care providers through on-site workshops for health workers in the Indian partner cities, and 12 fellowships for Indian professionals who will train in the United States for several months to a year in psychiatric epidemiology, community-engaged research, and public health policy.

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