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Working together to improve birth outcomes in Democratic Republic of the Congo

Working together to improve birth outcomes in Democratic Republic of the CongoIn Democratic Republic of the Congo, Marcel Yotebieng, Public Health, and Jesse Kwiek, Arts and Sciences, have been working to optimize HIV, Tuberculosis, and maternal and child health service delivery for almost two decades. 

"Within this ongoing effort, a new focus of the team is to understand why women living with HIV are two times more likely to have low birthweight infants," explains Kwiek. "We expect to identify mechanisms linking HIV to low birth weight, which could suggest interventions to improve health outcomes of HIV-exposed and uninfected infants."

With funding from the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and National Institutes of Health (NIH), the research team is currently using Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) techniques to try to optimize outcomes of the program to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) across the province of Kinshasa. 

Marcel Yotebieng and Jesse Kwiek project planned with pathologist Lebwaze Massamba in Kinshasa

The Ohio State faculty work closely with a large group of researchers in the Congo and regularly gather together to analyze findings and project plan.

During a recent visit, Yotebieng and Kwiek project planned with University of Kinshasa pathologist Lebwaze Massamba at the Department of Anatomical Pathology at the university.