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Dr Latifat Ibisomi

AddressJohannesburg
South Africa
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    I hold a PhD in Demography and Population Studies, MSc (Med) in Epidemiology & Biostatistics, MSc in Population Studies and a BSc (Hons) in Statistics. I also hold certifications in many specialized population, health, development, and management training programmes. Since 1988, I have pursued a career in the population and health fields, and thus have considerable experience in population and public health matters, especially in sub-Saharan Africa (having lived and worked in the Western, Eastern and Southern regions of the continent). I am currently an Associate Professor in the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) School of Public Health and Adjunct Research Fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR). Prior to my current employment, I worked in government, international and research institutions (including the National Population Commission, Nigeria; UNICEF, Nigeria; the African Population and Health Research Centre (APHRC), Kenya, and the Wits Graduate Programme in Demography and Population Studies).

    I teach and coordinate a broad range of courses, including Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Computing, Research Methods, Implementation Science, Quality Improvement Science, and Demographic Methods. I have led, organized, facilitated and participated in curriculum development and programme reviews of undergraduate and graduate programmes at Departmental, School and Faculty levels. I have supervised 21 Masters and one honours research student to completion, and I am currently supervising nine Masters (three submitted for examination) and four PhD students. I have served as examiner for five PhD theses and 18 Masters research reports. I also mentor and coach past and current students, junior faculty and other associates on academic and professional development issues. I am the principal investigator for an ongoing WHO/TDR post-graduate (MSc & PhD) training grants in Implementation Science.

    My research focus is on promoting the sexual and reproductive health (SRH), and well-being of different segments of the African population using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Of particular note is my work on adolescents and maternal & child health issues (family planning, unsafe abortion, preconception care, antenatal, delivery, post-natal care, vaccination, breastfeeding, diarrhea and other childhood morbidities and mortality); implementation of three SRH research projects in two slum areas of Nairobi, Kenya; evaluation of the continental SRHR framework in nine African Countries; and the assessment of policy and systems frameworks for the bi-directional linkage of SRH and HIV in Kenya and Lesotho. I was a member of the task force on the ENGAGE project, which sought to reposition family planning in Kenya. I currently oversee a study on HIV incidence and related sexual behaviour practices among pregnant women at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital; co-investigate a migration, urbanization and health project at the Agincourt HDSS; and co-investigate as well as provide leadership for the needs, baseline, mid-term and summative assessments as well as provide technical oversight, on a SRHR-HIV project focusing on adolescents and young people, sex workers and migrants in six southern Africa countries. I have published 26 peer-reviewed, four conference reviewed, six other non-peer reviewed, one accepted and four submitted (under review) papers. I have presented more than 40 papers and posters at local and international conferences/forums.

    I am a member of the research committee of the Ekurhuleni Health District (Gauteng Province) and a number of Committees at the School and Faculty, member of six professional bodies, an editorial board member of a Journal, an editorial advisory board member for another, Associate Editor for one, and reviewer for eleven others. I have participated in reviewing conference submissions, book chapters and grant applications for various organisations. I have also chaired and been a discussant at several local and international conferences. At the community level, I have been a volunteer with the Wits Hospice since 2013

    My broad academic qualifications, backed by my rich blend of field, research, classroom and management experiences, have been particularly useful in my lectures and other interactions with students. My training has provided me with tools that I apply in the conduct, analysis and supervision of research work. My coordination; supervision, mentoring, coaching and facilitation; resource management; as well as representation and networking skills, have also been handy in the discharge of my many varied and growing administrative and managerial responsibilities.

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