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Malawi research journal: blog from Sharon L. Youmans PharmD, MPH

In this series of regular reports, Sharon L. Youmans, PharmD, MPH, faculty member in the UCSF School of Pharmacy, shares her personal story during her 3-week research stay in The Republic of Malawi in southeastern Africa.

The goals of Youmans’ research project are to describe how religious groups and traditional healers function together and/or independently in Malawi to help people with HIV/AIDS and to identify any barriers that Malawians living with HIV/AIDS experience in treatment and care.

This project is part of a larger research grant from the U.S. National Institutes of Health to study numerous aspects of the roles of five religious groups in Malawi in HIV/AIDS prevention and care. It has been operating since 2006.

Malawi is one of Africa’s poorest countries. 900,000 of Malawi’s 13.6 million adults and children are living with HIV/AIDS. Youmans, with Sally Rankin, RN, PhD, FAAN, professor and chair, Department of Family Health Care Nursing, UCSF School of Nursing and lead investigator of the larger NIH grant, arrived in Malawi on Monday, July 7, 2008 to begin gathering data for Youmans’ research project. This is Youmans’ story.

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Sharon L. Youmans’ Research Journeys to Malawi

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About the School: The UCSF School of Pharmacy aims to solve the most pressing health care problems and strives to ensure that each patient receives the safest, most effective treatments. Our discoveries seed the development of novel therapies, and our researchers consistently lead the nation in NIH funding. The School’s doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree program, with its unique emphasis on scientific thinking, prepares students to be critical thinkers and leaders in their field.