Celebrating Success! A year of achievements in review.

As we reflect on the past year, we take great pride in all the milestones that the Frank Foundation has achieved through its platform NextGenU.org. From launching new courses to establishing strategic partnerships, we have significantly progressed toward providing access to free health science and healthcare education globally. At NextGenU.org, we strive to improve health and healthcare education by developing curricula and offering free courses across the health sciences, making these openly available to learners, teachers, and institutions. In this blog, we take a closer look at some of the many accomplishments made in 2022.

At NextGenU.org, learners from all corners of the globe come together to learn and share knowledge. In 2022, 70% of our registered users were medical students and physicians, about half originating from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Some of the courses we launched and updated in 2022 include:


Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT): This course provides learners with the essential skills to effectively identify, refer, and treat patients with substance use disorders and introduces a public health approach to substance use disorders.  


Psychiatric Clerkship for Medical Students (PCMS): This course was created in alignment with competencies specified by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and provides learners with an introduction to diagnosing and treating mental health disorders as outlined by the DSM-5. By engaging with this course, students can learn about various mental health disorders, perform psychiatric evaluations, and formulate diagnosis and treatment plans.


Naloxone Course: Our course Naloxone Training: Treating an Opioid Overdose, provides learners with a general understanding of opioids and opioid overdose, an overview of Naloxone, and its use in treating opioid overdose in first aid and hospital settings.


War and Public Health: This course provides a comprehensive overview of the public health consequences of war and conflict on different populations, including refugees, humanitarian responses to war, the role of public health workers in supporting response efforts, and measures to prevent the escalation of violence. It explores the public health consequences of past and present wars, such as the Iraq war and the Ukraine-Russian conflict.


Humanism in Health and Healthcare (Updated): Our Humanism in Health and Healthcare course provides learners with foundational, theoretical, and practical knowledge and skills to help address the complex and multi-dimensional nature of health and illness. 


Substance Use and Public Health (Updated): This course comprehensively introduces substance use disorders and public health. It addresses the risk factors associated with developing substance use disorders (SUDs), the burden of SUDs, the role that public health plays in lessening the burden of substance use disorders, and the impact of prevention strategies, interventions, and control programs.


Global Mental Health (Updated): This course provides information on mental health conditions in the context of LMICs as it relates to risk factors, the burden of mental illness, the impact of substance abuse on mental health disorders, and effective policies and interventions that can help improve mental health.


Community-Oriented Primary Care (Updated): This course provides a model for integrating primary care services into communities and targets health-related concerns with active community participation.


List of Courses launched and Updated 2022

  • Community-Oriented Primary Care (Update)
  • Evidence-based Journalism for Health
  • Global Health (Update)
  • Global Mental Health (Update)
  • Health Policy and Management
  • Math 1
  • Pediatric Nursing
  • Research Methods for Health Sciences
  • Rural Health and Aging 
  • Social and Behavioral Health
  • Intro to Psychology
  • Public Health Nutrition
  • Speech Language Pathology
  • Global Solutions for Peace, Equality, and Sustainability: Building a More Just World
  • Pandemic Etiology, Preparedness, and Response
  • Humanism in Health and Healthcare (Update)
  • Intro to Mental Health Professions
  • Management of Mental Health Disorders in Primary Care
  • Mental Health Nursing
  • Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT)
  • Substance Use and Public Health (Update)
  • Substance Use Disorders in Primary Care
  • Wellness in the workplace
  • Naloxone Training: Treating an Opioid Overdose
  • Psychiatric Clerkship for Medical Students
  • War and Public Health

Innovations Team- Artificial Intelligence


In 2022, our Innovations Team also made strides toward incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) to improve the instructional design process. Testing has been done to assess how GPT-3 can create multiple-choice questions (MCQs), student learning outcomes, learning activities, and case studies. GPT-3 has the potential to revolutionize our ID process, making it more efficient and effective by automating tasks that take up a lot of time.



NextGenU.org has participated in numerous conferences over the last year and has leveraged these conferences to reach new audiences and connect with new partners from around the world.


In April, our team presented at the New York Institute of Technology Grand Rounds: Clinical Reflections; Addiction: A Local and Global Perspective. Our presenting team consisted of Dr. Magali Collonnz, Dr. Erica Frank, Dr. Eduardo Bianco, Dr. Anthony Schlaff, and CEO Mrs. Miriam Chickering. The presentation highlighted topics about resources and addiction research, addiction and public health, substance use disorders, the international response to an epidemic of addictive substance use, and the healthy doc=healthy patient initiative.


Dr. Eduardo Bianco, our Director of International Policy Education in Addiction for the Addiction Professionals Training Program, made several outstanding presentations. These included presentations to the World Heart Federation (WHF) as chair of the WHF Tobacco Expert Group, where he suggested and led the development of a factsheet/infographic on Tobacco and the Environment for World No Tobacco Day 2022. 


At the National Resources Fund, Dr. Bianco also presented a lecture on The Tobacco Epidemic and Control in Uruguay. In a webinar entitled “Control of the New Deadly Weapons,” organized by the National Cancer Prevention and Control Program of the National Institute of Neoplastic Diseases (INEN), Ministry of Health of Peru, in celebration of the 2022 World No Tobacco Day, he delivered an address on Tobacco Packaging Health Warnings and Plain Packaging. He also participated as a speaker at the WHO/PAHO Regional Webinar on “Access to treatment for tobacco cessation in the Region of the AMERICAS.”


Dr. Erica Frank, MD, MPH, FAACME, also had the privilege of attending a conference hosted by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in Trinidad and Tobago. As a specially invited speaker, she had the opportunity to share NextGenU.org’s mission which is intricately linked to the future of public health education as we prioritize the development of health science curricula and offer a free certification for students globally.


In November, Dr. Frank also delivered the keynote address along with the President of the Association of American Medical Colleges, Dr. David Skorton, at UM’s International Conference on the Future of Health Professions Education, where health professionals from around the world applauded our work in free online health professional education.


Other noteworthy conference presentations include 


  • A presentation by Dr. Frank, Dr. Anthony Schlaff, and CEO Mrs. Miriam Chickering at the workshop at the annual meeting for the Association of Prevention Teaching and Research, Addiction Resources, and Research.
  • The presentation for the Association of Prevention Teaching and Research, Addiction Medicine and Public Health Education at the Council of Graduate Programs in Public Health, Spring Meeting by Dr. Erica Frank, Dr. Anthony Schlaff, and CEO Mrs. Miriam Chickering.
  • Dr. Frank’s presentation at the Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine hosted by the Departments of Community Medicine of Government Medical College.
  • A poster presentation made by Dr. Scott Oakman at the annual meeting of the American Association of Directors of Psychiatry Residency Training.

As we look toward 2023, we remain committed to positively impacting the future of public health education and strive to achieve even greater success in the years to come. We acknowledge that collaboration is critical to continue achieving our goal of democratizing professional health science education because it requires sharing resources and ideas to level the playing field. Achieving this end requires the collective efforts of all stakeholders involved. If you are interested in collaborating, volunteering, or being part of our community of learners, visit our website at https://nextgenu.org/ to learn more!

Reisha Narine