Linda Amarkai Vanotoo: A Leader in Global Health and Child Care
Linda Vanotoo's passion for child health began in medical school, where she was drawn to the children's ward and eager to learn more. When the opportunity arose to further her education at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM), Linda seized it and was awarded Thomas Mark Scholarship to attend and gain a Masters in Tropical Paediatrics (2000). It was when she was taking part in a research project in The Gambia that opened her eyes to the poor health indicators in sub-Saharan Africa. Despite facing challenges, such as difficulty finding accommodations and difficulty getting her slides read, Linda persevered, eventually developing a passion for maternal and infant health.
Linda's career in health services has been marked by innovation and impact. She worked her way up from Metropolitan Director of Health Service, to Deputy Director in charge of Public Health, to Regional Director of Health Services for two regions. Along the way, she developed the PROMISE (Promote Maternal and Infant Survival Excellence) approach, and established The Pregnancy School, a new way of communicating with pregnant women and their families. Linda even wrote a book and a magazine on the topic, and contributed to the development of a perinatal death audit tool for Ghana. She currently works with an International NGO as a Senior Program Director leading Primary and Community Health Workforce development to build resilience in Primary Health Care to enhance achievement of Universal Health Coverage.
Linda describes her time at LSTM as "educative, friendly, and life-changing," and has advice for current and prospective students: to have a purpose in their studies, to plan for the impact they will make after the course, to network and stay connected, and to explore the world around them.
Linda sees LSTM's greatest achievement as its ability to develop experts who have gone on to make significant impact in the global health community. With Linda Vanotoo as a shining example, it's clear that LSTM has indeed changed the world in countless ways over its 125-year history.