Baylor College of Medicine Children's Foundation, Eswatini
Fellowship Site Directors: Dr. Bhekumusa Lukhele
Tara Devezin, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bridgette Naik, email@example.com
Baylor College of Medicine Children’s Foundation – Eswatini, known as Baylor Foundation Eswatini, is a not-for-profit child health and development organization that operates Baylor College of Medicine - Bristol Myers-Squibb Children’s Clinical Center of Excellence – Eswatini (COE) and two satellite clinics.
Baylor Foundation Eswatini supports the Ministry of Health in improving the health sector response to HIV through the provision of high-quality, family-centered pediatric and adolescent health care, education, and clinical research. This ultimately helps the country to achieve its broad mandate, the Sustainable Development Goals. The Ministry of Health takes a Health Systems Strengthening approach to achieve an HIV-free generation, through partnerships and strong ties with civil society, including through its public-private partnership with Baylor Foundation Eswatini.
Baylor Foundation Eswatini implements a child and adolescent health program in Eswatini, focusing on interventions that address the major causes of morbidity and mortality in children as well as those who are proven to be highly effective in improving the health and development of adolescents living with HIV. They are the national leader in pediatric HIV/AIDS and TB care and treatment in the country, caring for almost half of all children on antiretroviral therapy in Eswatini. Their scope has increased to cover other services, such as education, screening, and treatment of pre-cancerous lesions for the entire population. They also offer health professional trainings and clinical research.
To influence and document change in health policy, medical practice, standards of care, and models of care, Baylor Foundation Eswatini conducts diverse research in pediatric care and treatment. They maintain an Institutional Review Board, which is responsible for streamlining and ensuring the integrity of all research projects.
There are a series of innovative studies that the Foundation have published and some currently ongoing. These include:
- Host genomic factors associated with HIV and TB progression in African children (CAfGen). This is a multicenter study which entails a genomic approach to understanding HIV and associated comorbidities in African children.
Immunologic effects of helminth infection on TB and HIV-specific immunity and progression. This study seeks to determine the immunologic and clinical effect of helminth infection on TB-specific immunology and to determine the prevalence of helminth infection in children with and without TB disease. It also seeks to define the dynamic immune response of children with in-utero helminth exposure compared to children without in utero-helminth exposure. The primary goal of the project is to elucidate the dynamic immune mechanisms in which helminth infection leads to TB disease progression.