Mary A. Bachman DeSilva, DSc

Assistant Professor, Global Health
Mary Bachman DeSilva
Crosstown Center
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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.

Other Positions

  • Center Faculty Member, Center for Global Health & Development , Boston University School of Public Health


  • Harvard School of Public Health, DSc
  • Harvard School of Public Health, MSc
  • Georgetown University, MS
  • Dartmouth College, AB


  • Published on 6/13/2016

    Bachman Desilva M, Gifford AL, Bonawitz R, Zhong L, Zhang F, Mu W, Li Y, Lu H, Zeng X, Gill CJ, Sabin LL . 7:586. doi:10.4172/2155-6113.1000586. Real-time electronic drug monitoring (EDM) for HIV-positive adolescents: Promising acceptability and feasibility in China. Journal of AIDS and Clinical Research. 2016; 7(7):doi:10.4172/2155-6113.1000586.

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  • Published on 12/28/2015

    Dorji G, DeJong W, Bor J, Bachman DeSilva M, Sabin L, Feeley FR, Udon P, Wangchuk N, Wangdi U, Choden T, Gurung MS, Chogyel T, Wangchuk D, Kypri K. Increasing compliance with alcohol service laws in a developing country: intervention trial in the Kingdom of Bhutan. Addiction. 2016 Mar; 111(3):467-74. PMID: 26476020.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/1/2015

    Gill CJ, DeSilva MB, Hamer DH, Keyi X, Wilson IB, Sabin L. Novel Approaches for Visualizing and Analyzing Dose-Timing Data from Electronic Drug Monitors, or "How the 'Broken Window' Theory Pertains to ART Adherence". AIDS Behav. 2015 Nov; 19(11):2057-68. PMID: 25893658.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/15/2015

    Sabin LL, Bachman DeSilva M, Gill CJ, Zhong L, Vian T, Xie W, Cheng F, Xu K, Lan G, Haberer JE, Bangsberg DR, Li Y, Lu H, Gifford AL. Improving Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy With Triggered Real-time Text Message Reminders: The China Adherence Through Technology Study. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2015 Aug 15; 69(5):551-9. PMID: 25886927.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/1/2013

    Desilva MB, Skalicky A, Beard J, Cakwe M, Zhuwau T, Quinlan T, Simon JL. Household dynamics and socioeconomic conditions in the context of incident adolescent orphaning in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Vulnerable Child Youth Stud. 2013 Dec 01; 8(4). PMID: 24223622.

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  • Published on 7/16/2013

    Bachman Desilva M, Gifford AL, Keyi X, Li Z, Feng C, Brooks M, Harrold M, Yueying H, Gill CJ, Wubin X, Vian T, Haberer J, Bangsberg D, Sabin L. Feasibility and Acceptability of a Real-Time Adherence Device among HIV-Positive IDU Patients in China. AIDS Res Treat. 2013; 2013:957862. PMID: 23956851.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/5/2012

    Bachman Desilva M, Skalicky AM, Beard J, Cakwe M, Zhuwau T, Simon JL. Longitudinal evaluation of the psychosocial wellbeing of recent orphans compared with non-orphans in a school-attending cohort in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Int J Ment Health Promot. 2012 Jun; 14(3):162-182. PMID: 23457424.

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  • Published on 2/24/2012

    Desilva MB, Skalicky A, Beard J, Cakwe M, Zhuwau T, Quinlan T, Simon J. Early impacts of orphaning: Health, nutrition, and food insecurity in a cohort of school-going adolescents in South Africa. Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies. 2012; 7(1):75-87.

    Read at: Custom
  • Published on 6/1/2010

    Sabin LL, DeSilva MB, Hamer DH, Xu K, Zhang J, Li T, Wilson IB, Gill CJ. Using electronic drug monitor feedback to improve adherence to antiretroviral therapy among HIV-positive patients in China. AIDS Behav. 2010 Jun; 14(3):580-9. PMID: 19771504.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 4/8/2009

    Gill CJ, Sabin LL, Hamer DH, Keyi X, Jianbo Z, Li T, Wu WJ, Wilson IB, Desilva MB. Importance of dose timing to achieving undetectable viral loads. AIDS Behav. 2010 Aug; 14(4):785-93. PMID: 19353263.

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View 8 more publications:View full profile at BUMC