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International Health

December 11, 2018

International Health Doctoral Student Awarded NIH Grant to Examine Experiences of Violence and HIV Care and Treatment Among HIV-Positive Youth in Zambia

Kate MerrillKate Merrill, MSc, a doctoral student in the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, received a National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health grant to study the experiences of physical, emotional, and sexual violence victimization and assess how such victimization influences clinical outcomes and engagement in care and treatment among youth ages 15-24 living with HIV in Zambia. The three-year award is for $175,000 for tuition and stipend support.

Despite the high prevalence of both HIV and gender-based violence in many parts of sub-Saharan Africa, there is limited data on the extent of violence victimization or how it affects young people’s ability to access HIV care and adhere to HIV treatment. The grant will support Merrill’s research, which will fill important gaps in the literature and inform programming for improving HIV care and treatment among youth in the region. Julie Denison, PhD '06, MHS '99, an associate professor in international health at the Bloomberg School, is the sponsor of the student award. The research is also planned to serve as Merrill’s doctoral dissertation.