Our Profile

Aims and Objectives

The overarching objective is to consolidate and strengthen existing research capacity and research-support systems, and to build on relationships within COM and research affiliates.

 1. Strategic vision of the Research Group and host Department

To support and foster collaborative and multidisciplinary TB/HIV research within the College of Medicine, Blantyre, with the long term goal of building local scientific research capacity that is sustainable, internationally excellent, and that makes a direct contribution to local and international TB diagnostic capacity, control policy, and practice.

2. Specific objectives of the proposed Research Group

a. To strengthen capacity and collaborative relationships around the key scientific disciplines required for high quality TB diagnostic and epidemiological research, aiming to create a pool of scientific leadership and opportunity able to retain skills and attract in further investment in the research and diagnostic infrastructure through initial.

i. Capital investment in TB diagnostics, and in data entry and analysis

ii. Research Fellowships ( Ph.D.-level, Masters/Research Internships)

iii. Short course development

iv. Distance-based MSc in Epidemiology (LSHTM)

v. Distance-based MSc in Clinical Trials (LSHTM)

b. To facilitate internationally competitive research of high relevance to local and international health policy by providing small grant and networking opportunities.

c. To contribute towards high-quality teaching and training opportunities for all staff and students in College of Medicine, through the design of 3 short courses (Basic Epidemiology, Social Epidemiology Mixed and Participatory Methods, Diagnostic and Operational Research Methods) in collaboration with Department of Community Health/existing MPH course.

d. To institutionalise the successful HNTI postgraduate research short courses in collaboration with other capacity strengthening initiatives, and to develop short courses in TB laboratory methods.

e. To work closely with, and contribute to, the existing research support structures within COM, avoiding duplication and contributing to system strengthening of financial and RSC functions.

f. To integrate the scientific capacity development opportunities of this initiative in with those of Malawi-SACORE, providing mutual benefit in the process.

g. To foster long-term collaboration between University of Tromsø and College of Medicine, Blantyre, and to provide a forum for networking activities between COM and other TB groups and stakeholders within Malawi, including NTP.

h. To support Clinical Microbiology specialist training and teaching capacity within Department of Pathology.