Global Health Research Seminar Series—COVID-19 Mortality in Lusaka, Zambia
- 1:00 pm on Monday, December 7, 2020
- 2:00 pm on Monday, December 7, 2020
Speakers: Rachel Pieciak and Dr. Christopher Gill. Bio: Rachel Pieciak is a Research Fellow in the Department of Global Health. Since 2019, she has worked closely with Dr. Chris Gill, overseeing technical and operational aspects of the active projects in his research portfolio, including the Minimally Invasive Tissue Sampling for diagnosis of RSV bronchiolitis in deceased Zambian infants (MITS) study, the Mobile Bedside Ultrasound for Pneumonia Project (mBSUS) study, the Southern Africa Mother Infant Pertussis Study – Nasopharyngeal Carriage (SAMIPS-NPC) study, the Zambia Pertussis RSV Infant Mortality Estimation Study (Z-PRIME) and Project SEARCH (Scanning Ears for Child Health). Rachel graduated with a BA from Kalamazoo College in 2014 and an MPH from Boston University School of Public Health in 2016. Bio: Christopher Gill has an MD from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and an MS from Tufts-Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Studies.Dr. Gill is an infectious disease specialist by training. From 2002-2008 he was a faculty member of the Department of Global Health at Boston University School of Public Health, engaged in a wide variety of clinical trials and investigations. His research interests have focused on child survival, and include diarrheal diseases, tuberculosis, pneumococcal and meningococcal disease, adherence to HIV medications, and neonatal survival. He was the principal investigator of the Lufwanyama Neonatal Survival Project in Northern Zambia (LUNESP), a prospective, cluster randomized and controlled effectiveness study designed to determine whether training traditional birth attendants to manage several common perinatal conditions could reduce neonatal mortality in the setting of a resource poor country with limited access to healthcare. The results demonstrated that training traditional birth attendants in neonatal resuscitation skills significantly reduces neonatal mortality by approximately 50%. From 2008-end of 2010 he was the Director of the Meningitis ACWY conjugate vaccine clinical trials group at Novartis Vaccines. There he was responsible for the design, implementation and analysis of Phase IIb, III and IV clinical trials in support of the vaccine, and played a key role in licensing this new vaccine in over 60 countries around the world, including the US. In 2011, he rejoined the faculty at the BU Center for Global Health and Development and the BU School of Public Health, working as the Director of the BUSPH Pharmaceuticals Program from 2011-15, teaching, mentoring, and conducting research in the areas of HIV medication adherence in China, advocacy around child mortality due to diarrhea and pneumonia, pertussis and RSV disease surveillance in Zambia, and capacity building of Vietnamese community health workers using SMS text messaging. Dr. Gill is the 2015 recipient of the Norman Scotch Award for excellence in teaching at Boston University School of Public Health, and the 2016 recipient of Boston University's Metcalf Cup and Prize. The Metcalf Cup and Prize is BU's highest teaching honor, and is awarded to one of BU's >3500 faculty across its 17 colleges and schools each year.