European Public Health at Maastricht University

European Public Health at Maastricht University


Health has no borders. A virus, for example, hops easily
from country to country. Therefore, it is good to look at health
not only from a national point of view, but also from
an international point of view. How can countries cooperate,
solving health issues, and what can we learn from other countries
and the way they handle health policy? That’s why we offer
the Bachelor in European Public Health. Makes sense, doesn’t it? But what, exactly, does the word ‘public’
mean in ‘public health’? While medicine, psychology or nursing
are concerned with the individual patient, public health aims at improving health
at the population level. That is, at the level of a society,
or a country or a continent. In the case of
the Bachelor in European Public Health, it is all about improving health in,
you guessed it, Europe. Maastricht is
the place of a European treaty. In 1992 it happened, where we created
the euro and European citizenship. And from this tradition, Maastricht is
the only place in Europe where you can study European Public Health, a unique mixture between European studies
and public health. European Public Health is
taught in English, and it’s a unique bachelor’s programme,
the only one of its kind in Europe. It therefore attracts students
from all over the world. This translates into
a very international atmosphere on campus. More than 60 percent of the students
come from abroad. This is what student Natalia
has to say about that. Many friends whom I study
European Public Health with come from many different EU countries
or even non-EU countries. I have friends who come from Australia,
Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Bulgaria and many other countries from the EU. Or internationally, for that matter. Well, what I encounter a lot
during my studies is that a lot of friends and I compare
the countries we come from. For example, a friend of mine
comes from Moldova. And when we talk with each other,
we experience that in her country and in my country, where I come from,
the Netherlands, there are huge differences regarding
the healthcare system. This is very interesting,
as a European Public Health student, because it shows us or highlights
that there are a lot of differences between our healthcare systems. And as a European Public Health student,
you want to diminish those differences and improve the healthcare system
in each country, regardless of your country of origin. The programme itself also has
an international orientation. You have the opportunity to do a minor
abroad in year two, and an international placement period
in year three. Timo Clemens is one of the teachers
in the programme. Timo, can you tell us a bit more
about the topics that will be discussed in this programme? And can you give us some examples, maybe? We address public health problems in PBL,
from a variety of member states in Europe, addressing, as well, things
that transcend member states, like infectious diseases or rare diseases. Within infectious diseases, obviously,
bugs don’t stop at borders, as the recent Ebola epidemic has shown. And we address and discuss with students
within Public Health sessions how people can inform each other
or take common actions in order to prevent the epidemic,
to stop it. With regards to rare diseases, obviously,
you would like for a child with a rare disease
in the Baltics to have access to the best specialists
throughout Europe. And that could be a rare disease specialist
in Spain. And within Public Health, we are concerned
with how we can organise for that child to have access
to the best care possible in Europe. So, after
the Bachelor in European Public Health, we can stop bugs at the border. But seriously, what kind of jobs are there
for Bachelors in European Public Health? I presume the international approach
of the programme paves a path for a career with an international focus. Can you work abroad when you finish
this programme or work for European institutions? Timo, what do you think? In fact, the bachelor’s programme
European Public Health provides a broad, well-founded, policy-oriented
introduction to public health. And our students can easily specialise
with a focused master’s programme in many directions, or get some first experiences
on the labour market. Obviously, alumni
of the bachelor’s programme work in international settings,
like in Brussels, working for national governments,
EU institutions, NGOs or the pharmaceutical industry. But alumni also enter academia, in order to research
public health programmes even further. Or they work in national settings, for example, for a national
or regional ministry for health, for agencies of public health. That’s, in a nutshell, an introduction
to European Public Health, and I would love to welcome you
to Maastricht. Thank you, Timo, for the introduction
to European Public Health and for the invitation. There you have it. Are you interested in health sciences
and healthcare, but also in national
and international politics, administration and management,
policy and strategy? Then the bachelor’s programme
in European Public Health might just be the thing for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *