We develop innovative training strategies for future global health leaders by incorporating skills that give ethical, sustainable, and just solutions to current and future global and local health issues; associated with coordination, support, and implementation of transdisciplinary applied research on contextualized needs.
A better world, where equity, sustainability, and universality are the basis of the actions of health professionals for a more just and prosperous society.
CISG's story spans almost 30 years ago when Dr. Pablo Ortiz Roses arrived to the region of Coto Brus in southern Costa Rica. From this rural and isolated area, he became a nation-wide leader for the protection of vulnerable populations through a two-pillar approach: human rights and health equity. He also became a charismatic mentor for eager young professionals looking for public health career paths.
Most of CISG’s team trained under this visionary man, eventually cultivating the necessary talent to continue his dream of equitable health outcomes for everyone regardless of socio-economic status, nationality, or ethnicity.
At CISG we aim to continue and expand Dr. Ortiz's legacy to champion high-quality, ethically sound experiential learning, as well as to foster collaborative approaches to health and development.
We created CISG in 2015 to honor in life the work of our mentor.
Our goal is to provide the global health leaders of tomorrow with the skills and competencies that traditional classrooms cannot. We offer field courses, practicums, and facilitate research, all of which include our core ideals of immersive learning and community collaboration.Our goal is to provide the global health leaders of tomorrow with the skills and competencies that traditional classrooms cannot. We offer field courses, practicums, and facilitate research, all of which include our core ideals of immersive learning and community collaboration.
Our vision is that the region will become a hub for global health research. Data and research findings will, in turn, contribute to sound, evidence-based policies in the field of health.
We firmly believe that community participation is key for any health intervention. Our programs emphasize the importance of collaboration to replace the traditional top-down model in development work.
Funds received from international students help award scholarships to local students who do not have the financial resources to participate in these types of immersive programs.
Successful interventions and evaluations may be expanded, replicated, and modified to improve the health of others in the region.
At CISG we are all dynamic professionals, committed to global health and passionate about education. We are proud to have a team with an extremely diverse background that allows us to have a unique outlook on global health issues.
Our network of collaborators spans from experts in specific areas like human rights, indigenous knowledge and public policy to community leaders focusing on gender empowerment, indigenous issues, environmental issues and human rights.
Our immersive programs are designed to create educational experiences in the field that will enhance the understanding of theoretical principles in global health.
Despite our small size, Costa Rica has great ecological and cultural diversity. Costa Rica has a well-developed health system and boasts high human development indices. However, there are regions of the country that to this day remain forsaken, and achieving true health equity remains a challenge.
This region in the southern part of the country is the poorest and most isolated in Costa Rica. Yet it counts with invaluable assets such as its people, its nature and its body of traditional knowledge. Unfortunately, structural inequality and poor social determinants have led to poor health outcomes, that due to the nature of the populations that are affected, become invisibilized at the national level.
CISG has a well-established presence in the region. Our wide-spanning partnerships provide multiple facilities to house students and conduct academic and workshop sessions throughout the region. Fast speed internet access, computer access, and other digital resources are all available.
Marginalized communities in Costa Rica experience massive structural inequalities, which is reflected in poor health outcomes.
Despite the wide reach of the national health system, certain populations are invisibilized, and the system operates on outdated models of care. Additionally, there are insufficient human resource, a rigid system maladapted to interculturality and lack of proper infrastructure.
The epidemiological transition is well on its way in Costa Rica, while still suffering from malnutrition, neonatal and maternal morbimortality in hard-to-reach populations. Globalization now seems to catalyze some of these issues.
Higher education institutions in Costa Rica lack the resources and incentives to promote health research.
Long tradition of health and medical education focused on curative models of care, and little attention to preventive models, health promotion, and community participation.
Poor investment in research and deficient evaluation strategies have led to inefficient health strategies and policies.