Global Health Equity and Advocacy

Reaching out to improve care around the world

Global Health Equity and Advocacy Unit
The Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology’s Global Health Equity and Advocacy Unit works to promote the importance of being involved in global health endeavours, provide support to department members who choose to pursue global health efforts on both international and local levels, and work towards improving access to health care for vulnerable populations.

Established in 2013, the Global Health Equity and Advocacy Unit has enjoyed several early successes, including the creation of a resident global health elective, the establishment of a postgraduate global health curriculum, and the development of connections and partnerships with many local and international organizations.

If you have suggestions for activities for the Unit or are interested in getting involved in global health initiatives, please contact a member of the Global Health Equity and Advocacy Advisory Committee through our Coordinator, Crenda Marfo;

Mission and Mandate

To stimulate discussion and awareness among department members and the local community about obstetrical and gynecological issues in global health

To contribute to the international body of research on global health in obstetrics and gynaecology while developing greater interest within the department and university

To develop collaborative projects in low resource settings that contribute to enriched patient care in our department and for our partners

Global Health Equity and Advocacy Advisory Committee

This committee is comprised of department members and other individuals from the IWK community who are interested in obstetrical and gynecological global health equity and advocacy issues. They oversee and contribute to the GHEAU’s activities. Meetings are held bi-monthly.

Dr. Heather Scott
Global Health Equity and Advocacy Unit Medical Director

Crenda Marfo
Global Health Equity and Advocacy Coordinator

Dr. Jocelyn Stairs
Global Health Equity and Advocacy Unit Medical Co-Director

Kelly Maher, Director, Finance & Administration

Shawna O’Hearn, Director, Dalhousie Global Health Office

Dr. Noor Sadeq, Resident

Dr James Bentley, Department Head, Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Dr. Nathalie Kupfer, Resident

Dr. Samantha Kinley, Resident   

Dr. Kathleena Sarty, Resident

Dr. Gillian Ricketts, Resident

Dr. Chloe Brown, Resident

Dr. Kelsey Shea, Resident

Chantelle Murphy, Nurse

Dr. Karla Willows, Staff, Obstetrics & Gynaecology

Dr. Liz Randle, Staff, Obstetrics & Gynaecology

Dr. Melissa Brooks, Staff, Obstetrics & Gynaecology 

Jessie Pappin, Medical Student

Aditi Sivakumar, Medical Student


Current Projects:

 • “Exploring Patient Decision-Making About Contraceptive Preference: A Qualitative Analysis of Syrian Refugee Women in Nova Scotia”

Recent Publications:

Ferguson I, Scott H. Systematic Review of the Effectiveness, Safety, and Acceptability of Mifepristone and Misoprostol for Medical Abortion in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. J Obstet Gynaecol Can. 2020 Dec;42(12):1532-1542.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.jogc.2020.04.006.

Stairs J, Bal N, Maguire F, and Scott H. Halifax newcomer well woman clinic: promoting the health of refugee women through advocacy and partnership. Can Med Educ J. 2019; 10(4): e102–e104. DOI: partnership. Can Med Educ J. 2019; 10(4): e102–e104. DOI:10.36834/cmej.v10i4.69455

The Ghana PrenaBelt trial: a doubleblind, sham-controlled, randomised clinical trial to evaluate the effect of maternal positional therapy during third-trimester sleep on birth weight 

Previous Publications:

Global Women’s Health Education in Canadian Obstetrics and Gynaecology Residency Programs: A Survey of Program Directors and Senior Residents