Mary Bachman-DeSilva

Assistant Professor, Global Health

Harvard School of Public Health, ScD, SM
Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, MSFS

  • Office: Crosstown Center, CT394
  • Phone: 617-414-1260
  • Email:


Dr. Bachman DeSilva completed her doctorate in Demography and International Health at the Harvard School of Public Health, where her thesis work focused on early child health and subsequent morbidity and mortality in a rural area of The Gambia. Over the past fifteen years, she has worked on a variety of health and development projects in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. At the CGHD, she provides expertise on mixed method research design, survey methodology, and statistical analysis to a variety of applied studies designed to improve child and family health. Her primary areas of research have included orphans and vulnerable children (OVC); social and economic effects of HIV/AIDS and antiretroviral (ART) treatment; and medication adherence metrics and interventions. Dr. Bachman DeSilva’s most recent work includes a mixed methods study of HIV-positive adolescent patients on ART in China, including formative research with adolescents and their caregivers and clinicians. Her interest areas include: food security, infectious disease epidemiology, child and adolescent health and nutrition, caregiver health, and chronic and mental health issues among youth and caregivers.



Improving Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy With Triggered Real-time Text Message Reminders: The China Adherence Through Technology Study

Lora L. Sabin, MA, PhD; Mary Bachman DeSilva, MS, ScD; Christopher J. Gill, MS, MD; Li Zhong, MA; Taryn Vian, PhD; Wubin Xie, MPH; Feng Cheng, MPH, MD; Keyi Xu, MD; Guanghua Lan, MD; Jessica E. Haberer, MD; David R. Bangsberg, MD; Yongzhen Li, MD; Hongyan Lu, MD; and Allen L. Gifford, MD

Clinical Science. 2015 Jul; 69(5):551-559.

Attitudes and behaviors among older MSM in Ghana

Lora Sabin, Yaw Adu‐Sarkodie, Thomas Agyarko‐Poku, Paul Ashigbie, Danielle Hollenbeck‐Pringle, Mary Bachman DeSilva, Kimberly Green, Sam Wambugu, Yussif Ahmed Abdul Rahman, Kofi Akuoko, Kofi Baffuor Opoku, and Jennifer Beard

Washington, DC: USAID Project SEARCH; 2013 Sep.

Feasibility and Acceptability of a Real-Time Adherence Device among HIV-Positive IDU Patients in China

Mary B. DeSilva, Allen L. Gifford, Xu Keyi, Zhong Li, Cheng Feng, Mohamad Brooks, Mark Harrold, Hu Yueying, Christopher J. Gill, Xie Wubin, Taryn Vian, Jessica Haberer, David Bangsberg, and Lora Sabin

AIDS Research and Treatment. 2013 Jan; 2013:1-6.

Early impacts of orphaning: Health, nutrition, and food insecurity in a cohort of school-going adolescents in South Africa

Mary Bachman DeSilva, Anne Skalicky, Jennifer Beard, Mandisa Cakwe, Tom Zhuwau, Tim Quinlan and Jonathon Simon

Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies. 2012 Mar; 7(1):75-87.

Using Electronic Drug Monitor Feedback to Improve Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy among HIV-Positive Patients in China

Sabin L. L., DeSilva M. B., Hamer D. H., Xu K., Zhang J., Li T., Wilson I. B., Gill C. J.

AIDS Behav. 2009 Sep; 14(3):580-9.

Importance of Dose Timing to Achieving Undetectable Viral Loads

Gill C. J., Sabin L. L., Hamer D. H., Keyi X., Jianbo Z., Li T., Wu W. J., Wilson I. B., Desilva M. B.

AIDS Behav. 2009 Apr; 14(4):785-93.

Evaluation of Presidential Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)-Funded Community Outreach HIV Prevention Programs in Vietnam: Short Report

Sabin L., Hamer D., Vian T., DeSilva M. B., Lawrence D., McCoy K., Tuchman J., Beard J.

Hanoi, Vietnam: PEPFAR; 2009.

Evaluation of Presidential Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)-Funded Community Outreach HIV Prevention Programs in Vietnam: Report on Findings, 2008

Sabin L., Vian T., Hamer D. H., Beard J., Loan L. T. T., McCoy K., Tuchman J., Hammett T., Lawrence D., DeSilva M.B.

Community Outreach HIV Prevention Programs in Vietnam. Hanoi: PEPFAR Vietnam; 2009.

Barriers to Adherence to Antiretroviral Medications Among Patients Living with HIV in Southern China: a Qualitative Study

Sabin L. L., Desilva M. B., Hamer D. H., Keyi X., Yue Y., Wen F., Tao L., Heggenhougen H. K., Seton L., Wilson I. B., Gill C. J.

AIDS Care. 2008 Nov; 20(10):1242-50.

Vulnerability of Orphan Caregivers vs. Non-Orphan Caregivers in KwaZulu-Natal

DeSilva M. B., Beard J., Cakwe M., McCoy K., Nkosi B., Parikh A., Quinlan T., Skalicky A., Tshabangu-Soko S., Zhuwau T., Simon J.

Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies: An International Interdisciplinary Journal for Research, Policy and Care. 2008 Aug; 3(2):102 - 111.

Characteristics of Patients Accessing Care and Treatment for HIV/AIDS at Public and Nongovernmental Sites in South Africa

Rosen S., Ketlhapile M., Sanne I., DeSilva M. B.

J Int Assoc Physicians AIDS Care (Chic Ill). 2008 Jul; 7(4):200-7.

Evaluation of Presidential Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)-Funded Community Outreach HIV Prevention Programs in Vietnam: Final Report

Sabin L., Hamer D. H., Vian T., DeSilva M.B., Lawrence D., McCoy K., Tuchman J., Loan L. T. T., Hammett T.

Boston, MA: BUSPH, Center for International Health and Development; 2008.

Exploring the Cinderella Myth: Intrahousehold Differences in Child Wellbeing Between Orphans and Non-Orphans in Amajuba District, South Africa

Parikh A., DeSilva M. B., Cakwe M., Quinlan T., Simon J. L., Skalicky A., Zhuwau T.

AIDS. 2007 Dec; 21 Suppl 7:S95-S103.

Cost to Patients of Obtaining Treatment for HIV/AIDS in South Africa

Rosen S., Ketlhapile M., Sanne I., DeSilva M. B.

S Afr Med J. 2007 Sep; 97(7):524-9.

Prevalence of HIV Infection and Median CD4 Counts among Health Care Workers in South Africa

Connelly D., Veriava Y., Roberts S., Tsotetsi J., Jordan A., DeSilva E., Rosen S., DeSilva M. B.

S Afr Med J. 2007 Apr; 97(2):115-20.