Two SPH faculty members and one student have received Global Spotlight awards from the University of Minnesota Office of International Programs (OIP). The OIP’s global spotlight is a biennial focus on a region of the world and a pressing global issue. The latest focus is on Africa and the issue is water in the world.
SPH professor Alan Lifson leads one of four projects to receive a major international research grant. The funding will help move his work forward in rural Ethiopia to bolster patient retention in HIV therapy. It’s estimated that at least a quarter of all Ethiopian HIV patients die due to lack of followup care in the first year of diagnosis. Others return only after their illness has become so advanced that immune system reconstitution is impossible. Lifson’s preliminary evaluations in Ethiopia have found that three interventions would help retention: increasing community-based support workers, offering nutritional counseling, and linking HIV-positive people to peer support groups.