RTI International is stepping up its efforts to focus on health issues by forming a new organization called Global Health Group.

Barbara Kennedy, vice president of International Health in RTI’s International Development Group, will lead the health initiative. She has worked at RTI for a decade after a more than two decade care in USAID.

The health group will include more than 400 RTI staff.

Some people have been hired to help form the team, but most are coming from within other groups at RTI, a spokesperson said. The group will be based in RTP but will have employees around the world, she added.

“The Global Health Group will expand RTI’s impact and capabilities to enhance our wide-ranging work in global health,” said RTI Chief Executive Officer Victoria Haynes. “The group will work to develop integrated solutions to the world’s most complex problems.”

RTI has worked on global health issues in many ways over the years through research and development as well as programs focused on implementation of government, civic and private sector programs. Points of emphasis have included HIV/AIDS, malaria, tropical diseases, maternal and children’s health.

“RTI has a strong history of applying science and technology to turn knowledge into practice,” Kennedy said in a statement. “I look forward to working with RTI’s talented and creative staff to improve the human condition in communities around the world.”

Program areas will include:

• Infectious Diseases
• Health Systems and Finance
• Policy and Program Research
• Health Governance
• Reproductive Health and Family Planning
• Maternal and Child Health
• Environmental Health
• Health Technologies
• Public-Private Partnerships

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