Yerevan, Armenia – AUA School of Public Health organized a public health seminar with Dr. Haroutune Armenian. At the beginning of the seminar the Executive Director of the Association of Healthcare Organizers of Armenia Dr. Smbat Daghbashyan and the Director of the National Institute of Health Dr. Alexander Bazarchyan presented the special Award recognizing Dr. Armenian’s outstanding contribution to Public Health. The Association of Healthcare Organizers of Armenia in collaboration with the Minister of Health came up with this award to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Armenia’s independence and honor the contribution of prominent health professionals in the last 25 years.
Dr. Armenian focused his presentation on the topic “From Robust to Anti-fragile: a New Dimension for Health” where he described the paradigm shift that pays more attention to building a better state of health or, using Nassim N. Taleb’s vocabulary, ANTIFRAGILE. He also presented the recent evidence explaining how exercise works at the cellular level to build more health that would improve functionality, productivity, adaptability, homeostasis, alertness, dignity, and mobility. AUA students, alumni, researchers and faculty, representatives of government and non-governmental health agencies attended the presentation.
Dr. Armenian is a Professor in Residence of Epidemiology at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, the AUA President Emeritus, the founding Dean of the AUA SPH, and Professor Emeritus at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. His career in epidemiology has spanned a number of countries and regions of the world. He has special interests in the application of epidemiologic methods to health services research and chronic diseases. He is one of the earliest to apply epidemiologic methods to study the effects of the civil war at the population level during the 1980s in Lebanon, and the long-term effects of the 1988 earthquake in Armenia. In the 1980s, he pioneered epidemiologic research by using Armenian Church parish records to study infant mortality as well as other health indicators in 16 countries that have Armenian diaspora over a timeframe of 300 years. More recent research includes the 23 year follow up of the survivors of the earthquake in Armenia. Dr. Armenian has been for 15 years the Editor in Chief of Epidemiologic Reviews and on the editorial board of a number of professional journals and publications. He has published over 100 scientific peer reviewed papers and 21 chapters as well as 20 books. He also published two collections of his watercolors and prose-poetry in Armenian and English: Colors and Words and Past Here Does Not Yet Melt. The latter was composed while they climbed Mount Ararat in an AUA expedition led by Sona Armenian to Ararat and Western Armenia in 2006. In 2009, he became the supervisor of the Chair in Epidemiology and Public Health at the King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. In Armenia, he continues to lead the Turpanjian Rural Development Program that has the Entrepreneurship in Medicine as a sub-project.
The AUA School of Public Health works actively to improve population health and health services in Armenia and the region through interdisciplinary education and development of public health professionals to be leaders in public health, health services research and evaluation, and health care delivery and management.