Archive for the ‘2006 Former Trainees’ Category

Mr. Robert Ssekubugu

Wednesday, July 12th, 2006

Mr. Robert Ssekubugu’s research experience began when he was an undergraduate at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences.  He joined the Rakai Health Services Program (RHSP) as a primary data collector.

Five years later he had worked his way through the ranks of the Rakai Program to a data quality controller and later supervising protocol field activities. He is now the study coordinator of the Rakai Community Cohort study, a more than fifteen-year-old longitudinal study.  His enthusiasm for human subjects protection made him a natural fit for a study assessing community and individual perception of the benefits and risks associated with biomedical research, the first ever bioethics study done in the Rakai Health Sciences Program. After the FABTP program, Robert has conducted extensive work in the field of equipping research field staff with practical ethics skills through a wide-range of experience sharing engagement exercises and formal training. He has also analyzed data on consent comprehension studies conducted as part of some of the Rakai studies. This data has helped inform RHSP on the dynamics of informed consent and how to strengthen the process of informed consent.

In 2007 Robert was invited to join the Uganda Virus Research Institute’s science and ethics committee (IRB equivalent) as the Regulatory Officer. During his term, he and the institute’s director and the SEC chairpersons developed a proposal to the EDCTP that helped them set up the SEC/IRB secretariat. The grant also helped with training of IRB members and scientists on ethics of research and to perform compliance monitoring.

In August, 2009, Robert returned to Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to pursue his Masters of Science degree in Public Health (MSPH) in the department of International Health. He completed his degree in May, 2011 and he is back in Uganda working with Rakai and with the Uganda Virus Research Institute.

Mr. Francis Masiye

Saturday, July 8th, 2006

Mr. Masiye received a Bachelor of Philosophy in Ethics from the Pontifical Urbania University through his studies at the Salvatorian Institute of Philosophy and Theology in Tanzania. Upon returning to his native Malawi, Mr. Masiye took a post as a secondary school teacher of History, Biblical Studies and Social Studies. Having also studied anthropology at the Salvatorian Institute, Mr. Masiye went on to work as a museum guide and research officer for the Chamare Cultural Museum at the Kunogi Cultural Center in Mua Mission, where he conducted anthropological research for two years.

Currently, Mr. Masiye is working towards a Master of Philosophy in Ethics while serving as an assistant research officer in the Bioethics Research Unit of the University of Malawi College of Medicine. The study he is involved in examines clinical research from an anthropological and bioethics perspective.

Mr. Masiye intends to come away from the Program with the tools and knowledge necessary to formulate codes of research ethics that fit African and Malawian research subjects in particular. Through imparting his knowledge to the students of bioethics at the Malawi College of Medicine, he will also work to incorporate ethics into African Anthropology.

Ms. Caroline Kithinji

Saturday, July 8th, 2006

After graduating with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Nairobi, Ms. Kithinji employed her knowledge of biochemistry and molecular biology in conducting trypanosomiasis research at the Kenya Trypanosomiasis Research Institute. In the course of her twelve years of trypanosomiasis research, she attended the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, where she received a Masters of Science in Medical Parasitology.

Through her experience as a medical researcher, Ms. Kithinji was exposed to a host of bioethics issues arising from international research collaboration. She found that many ethical review boards were compelled to approve proposals with little or no recourse as to how the study wou ld actually be conducted. Also, she witnessed a lack of bioethics knowledge on the part of principle investigators and research participants.

In May of 2004, Ms. Kithinji joined the Ethical Review Committee (ERC) in the Research and Development Department of the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI). While at KEMRI, Ms. Kithinji has initiated a post-approval monitoring program, developed a digital database of Ethical Review Committee documentation, and played a key role in the development of a com prehensive Intellectual Property Policy for the Institute.

Ms. Kithinji intends to use the skills she takes away from the Training Program to transform the ERC into a center of bioethics excellence for the Great Lakes region. Towards this goal, she wishes to expand and train the ERC’s skilled staff base, introduce research tracking mechanisms and monitoring systems, and develop a method by which dissemination of ERC materials will create awareness in the population of potential research subjects.