Despite the great importance of cardiovascular disease (CVD) as one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality, research and training in this disease has been relatively neglected in Uganda. There is lack of good quality data on the epidemiology of CVD and on clinical outcomes and few on-site experts in CVD. This situation translates into low levels of awareness in the communities, poorer outcomes and sub-optimal primary care responses to CVDs. We propose to expand our highly successful research collaborations In infectious diseases to include CVD, with the goal of designing a program that will substantially improve the capacity for research and training in Uganda and to address the critical shortage of leaders in CVD. Using the community-based education, research and service (COBERS) sites in the programmatic award, training of medical students in CVD risk assessment and primary care will be supported. In addition, master's degree programs for residents and short term fellowships and PhD training for young faculty will be provided to develop clinical and research careers in CVD. Besides, research training in this program will be linked to a research project that will collect baseline epidemiological data. This MEPI program will be integrated within the existing framework of training at two major medical schools in Uganda namely Makerere University College of Health Sciences (MUCHS) and Mbarara University of Science and Technology to ensure its sustainability. These two medical schools are part of the MUCHS Programmatic application and will collaborate with other institutions including the Medical Research council in Uganda to support the community based CVD epidemiologic survey. Case Western University to provide visiting faculty and mentorship, and Yale University to provide short term fellowship programs for Ugandan residents and faculty. This proposal is in line with the government of Uganda Health Sector Strategic Plan that highlights building capacity for CVD prevention as one of its core priorities. By the end of this program, a critical mass of personnel will have been trained. The research environment for CVD will have been improved and this will likelv lead to substantial increase in publications and improve retention of the trained facultv.

Public Health Relevance

Despite the great importance of cardiovascular disease (CVD) as one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality, research and training in this disease has been relatively neglected in Uganda. Improved in-country CVD expertise and better knowledge of the epidemiology of CVD will be critical to assist the Ministry of Health in establishing effective policies for the treatment and control of CVD and will improve outcomes.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Fogarty International Center (FIC)
Resource-Related Research Projects (R24)
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Razak, Myat Htoo
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Makerere University
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