Under the leadership of Professor Wafaie Fawzi, the African Academy for Public Health (a Harvard-affiliated organization registered in Tanzania) seeks students to address critical gaps in global health research training, with training opportunities in the areas of nutrition, infectious disease, perinatal/child health, and chronic disease. Harvard faculty and international collaborators provide mentorship and research opportunities for students to engage in global health research in resource-poor settings. The Harvard-Tanzania Partnership conducts several large epidemiologic studies and randomized clinical trials. While nutrition is a central focus of ongoing research activities, there are opportunities related to a broader public health agenda. Student projects may center on the basic sciences, clinical data-collection, and/or potential policy outcomes based on the study findings.
Responsibilities may include:
- Assisting in project management
- Assisting with data monitoring and data quality control
- Assisting in the lab
- Assisting in finance and grant management department for any intern who may be interested in this department
Below is a list of current projects that an intern may work on according to his/her interests. In addition to these projects, depending on the interest of the intern, there is also the opportunity to connect with other Tanzanian collaborators who have a range of other projects. In the past, students have assisted with data entry and analysis and other administrative tasks essential to the research agenda.
Trial of Vitamin D in HIV Progression
The overall project goal is to investigate a vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) as a simple and low cost intervention to prolong and improve quality of life for HIV-infected women and men who are initiating antiretroviral treatment (ART) in resource limited settings. In order to meet these goals we are proposing a “gold standard” investigation with a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.
Trial of Vitamin D in Maternal HIV Progression and Child Health
HIV-infected pregnant women receiving antiretroviral therapy in sub-Saharan Africa experience high rates of mortality, morbidity, and adverse birth outcomes and their children also exhibit poor linear growth. This randomized trial may provide evidence that maternal vitamin D3 supplements prolong and improve the quality of life for these HIV-infected pregnant women and their children, which may result in adding these supplements to standard PMTCT care.
Impact of vitamin B12 on neurodevelopment and cognitive function from early life into school age
To provide technical assistance to local scientists at the Muhimbilii Univeristy in Dar es Salaam Tanzania, on the design, conduct, management and analysis of research data. In Tanzania, children who previously participated in a randomized placebo controlled trial will be revisited. Standard age appropriate tests measuring cognitive development will be administered.
Homestead Agriculture, Nutrition and Health Project in Rufiji District, Tanzania
To improve the nutrition and health of children and women in rural Tanzania through an integrated, gender-sensitive, agriculture, nutrition and health intervention, while also exploring the use of AEWs (assisted by CHWs) as a sustainable workforce for providing basic public health and nutrition education in rural communities
Dar es Salaam Urban Cohort Study (DUCS)
The goal of this project is to create a platform of an urban population cohort that can be used for the study of various environmental exposures, lifestyles and non-communicable diseases typical of urban areas. So far a variety of studies have been conducted in the platform including hypertension, diabetes, food insecurity, ageing, adolescent health and demographic dividend.
The aim of the surveillance is to design and implement a system that will collect data to be made available for use by authorities at national and local levels to help inform policy and services to improve health outcomes for maternal, newborn and child health. Simultaneously data from this study will help to understand the occurrence and determinants of maternal and child health outcomes among women of childbearing age in Dodoma. Furthermore findings from this data and other research work will help in designing and implementing other maternal and child health intervention research work to include randomized controlled trial.
Brief description from the Summer 2017 Fellow:
“I am interning with the Africa Academy for Public Health (AAPH), which is under the Management and Development for Health in Tanzania and serves to improve the health of Tanzanian inhabitants through a variety of techniques including educational campaigns, public policy, and clinical studies. My role is to help with data management in two clinical studies observing the effects of vitamin D on the health of HIV/AIDS patients receiving antiretroviral therapy. These studies are looking to find sustainable and affordable treatments that can improve the quality of life for these patients. Through my internship, I get to meet these patients in several clinics around Dar es Salaam and learn about their day-to-day experiences living with HIV/AIDS.” - Ozichi Osuoha