Population-based Research at AMBSO
AMBSO conducts both Quantitative and Social Behavioral Sciences research with an aim of providing information to prevent and treat diseases that cause illnesses and death. Information from AMBSO’s clinical and population-based research is meant to support policy fomulation at both national and international levels, and to design of evidence-based interventions for better health care outcomes.
The Population Health Surveillance (PHS)
PHS was established in 2017 and is currently AMBSO’s biggest research project. The PHS is a population-based surveillance Cohort following up ~5000 persons in 2 Ugandan districts; Wakiso and Hoima.
- The PHS geographical communities:
The sites where PHS is conducted in Wakiso and Hoima districts, were selected to represent the unique characteristics of the Ugandan population. Wakiso district is in the Central Region of Uganda that partly encircles Kampala, Uganda's capital city. AMBSO has 3 communities in Wakiso with a high HIV prevalence (7.7%) and presence of key populations such as sex workers, men having sex with men, labour migrants and high rates of alcohol use. In Hoima district, the PHS is following up 3 community strata with HIV prevalence among 7.3%. Hoima communities are unique because of the rapidly growing oil mining activities and the presence of Lake Albert attracting many migrant workers, sex workers, and fisher folks.
- PHS Procedures:
Persons aged 13-80 are enrolled and followed, with data collected every 12 months on. Persons who test HIV positive are referred for free antiretroviral treatment and HIV care according to the Uganda Ministry of Health guidelines. The study also collects blood samples to test for HIV and syphilis and plasma aliquots are stored for future testing.
The AMBSO Research Team.
- The Data that is collected:
The data collected in PHS include SES, demographics, vital signs, and other behavioral characteristics on reproductive health practices and knowledge, sexual practices and sexual networks, uptake of health services, and known traditional risk factors of NCDs. Physical examination measuring waist circumference, weight and height for BMI, and blood pressure is also performed.
- Ethical approval of the PHS study:
The study is approved by the Clark International University Research and Ethics Committee and cleared by the Uganda National Council of Science and Technology (UNCST). The PHS receives annual renewal of approvals and all participants provide written informed consent.
- Current Progress of the PHS:
The PHS completed the baseline visits to all participants in Wakiso and Hoima districts and is currently conducting the first follow-up visits.world.