Global WACh


December 28, 2022

COVID-19 in Pregnancy Study Team presents findings on SARS-CoV-2 antibody responses at IDWeek 2022

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Drs. Janet Englund (Seattle Children’s Hospital) and Sylvia LaCourse at IDWeek 2022. Credit: Sylvia LaCourse.

Dr. Sylvia LaCourse, Assistant Professor in Global Health and Medicine-Allergy & Infectious Diseases, presented on behalf of the COVID-19 in Pregnancy Study team on SARS-COV-2 antibody response in pregnant people at the Infectious Disease Society of America’s (IDSA) conference, IDWeek 2022, in Washington D.C from October 19-23, 2022. (more…)

August 4, 2022

Researchers present latest scientific evidence at Pediatric HIV Workshop and AIDS 2022

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This month, Global WACh researchers attended the 24th International AIDS Society Conference (AIDS 2022) held virtually and in-person in Montreal, Canada.  This year’s theme was “Re-engage and Follow the Science” — a call to convene scientists, policymakers, and activists to define future research agendas, shift the latest evidence to action, and chart a new consensus on overcoming the HIV epidemic as a threat to public health and individual well-being.  Researchers also attended the hybrid 14th International Workshop on HIV Pediatrics, a pre-conference event devoted to research in the prevention and treatment of HIV infections in infants, children, and adolescents.

Our researchers presented 12 poster abstracts and one oral presentation featuring the latest evidence from their studies, in relation to long-acting HIV treatment and prevention technologies, integrated and differentiated models of care, and monitoring and innovations in service delivery.  Laurén Gómez, a Research Coordinator at UW, was selected as a winner of the Lange/van Tongeren Prize for Young Investigators (co-partnered with ANRS – France Recherche Nord & Sud Sida-HIV Hépatites) and the Prize for Research in HIV Prevention (co-partnered with MSD – Merck Sharpe & Dohme). Learn more about Laurén’s analysis that aimed to address safety gaps in the impacts of prenatal pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) on growth and development in early childhood. See a list of accepted abstracts for both scientific gatherings below.


October 13, 2021

New publication on cost-effective pooled COVID-19 testing and quarantine strategies in World Health Organization Bulletin


The October 2021 World Health Organization (WHO) Bulletin issue features a new publication titled, “Pooled testing for SARS-CoV-2, options for efficiency at scale,” by Dr. Bhavna Chohan of UW Global Health and Kenya Medical Research Institute and and Dr. Marie Reilly of Karolinska Institutet.

A pooling strategy adapted to social networks offers a cost-effective strategy to enable the many uninfected individuals to continue their functions in society, while lockdown restrictions are imposed only on the few who are potentially infected. This integration of testing and quarantine strategies may enhance public trust and cooperation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read the latest issue here.

December 1, 2020

Researchers receive award to estimate COVID-19 prevalence, household transmission, and antibody response among pregnant women in King County, WA

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Dr. Alison Drake (Assistant Professor, Global Health and Epidemiology [Adjunct]) and Dr. Sylvia LaCourse (Assistant Professor, Medicine and Global Health) are the Principal Investigators of a new study to estimate the seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in King County, WA.

September 16, 2020

Dr. Keshet Ronen and the Somali Health Board partner to increase COVID-19 testing equity in King County, WA

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Congratulation to Dr. Keshet Ronen (Acting Assistant Professor, Global Health) and Dr. Ahmed Ali (Executive Director, Somali Health Board) for receiving a COVID-19 Population Health Equity Grant from the University of Washington to increase access to COVID-19 testing among the Somali community in King County, WA.  Led in partnership with the Somali Health Board, a Somali-led grassroots organization, this project aims to understand barriers to testing in this heavily impacted community and identify approaches to improve health equity in King County’s testing strategy. (more…)

August 11, 2020

Q&A with Emily Robson: Perspectives as a nurse during the COVID-19 pandemic

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University of Washington students are rising to the occasion to care for the most vulnerable populations during Seattle’s COVID-19 outbreak.  One of these students is Emily Robson, an incoming 2nd year Doctorate of Nurse Practice student in the Population Health Nursing Track and Global WACh Graduate Certificate student.  Emily is spending her summer as a full-time Registered Nurse at King County Public Health’s COVID-19 Isolation/Quarantine Centers.  These sites provide supervised care to symptomatic or COVID-positive individuals who cannot quarantine or recover in their own home, or do not have a home.  These spaces support the community by providing a place of care and slow the spread of the virus to others.

We asked Emily to share her experience as an Isolation/Quarantine nurse and the lessons learned as she courageously and compassionately works on the frontlines of a public health emergency.


August 5, 2020

Virtual on-boarding during the pandemic: Introducing new staff members


In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Global Health and Global WACh transitioned to a remote workforce starting in March 2020 at the recommendation of public health officials.  The pandemic has not shaken our Center’s commitment to improving the health and well-being of women, adolescents, and children, thus we continued with our hiring plans virtually and onboarded critical supportive roles to move our research forward.  Get to know the new five new staff members below!


August 3, 2020

Newly launched COVID MITS study aims to improve understanding of COVID-19 immunopathogenesis in Malawi

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Dr. Donna Denno, Professor

Sarah Lawrence, Research Coordinator

Dr. Donna Denno, Professor of Pediatrics and Global Health and the Associate Director of Pediatrics for Global WACh, is a co-investigator of a new study funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation launching in August 2020.  The study titled “MITS for lung pathology and immune response in fatal COVID-19 in Malawi (MITS COVID)” is a one-year project conducted in collaboration with the University of Glasgow, University of Malawi College of Medicine, University of Amsterdam, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Blantyre Malaria Project, and University of Manchester.  Global WACh Research Coordinator, Sarah Lawrence, will also support this investigatory effort.  Building upon the platform established in the Minimally Invasive Tissue Sampling (MITS) in Malawi study (Co-PI: Denno), the team will address knowledge gaps on immune responses against COVID-19 that drive severe diseases in vital organs, particularly in the lung. (more…)

July 30, 2020

Can schools reopen safely during a pandemic? Dr. Brandon Guthrie discusses other countries’ reopening strategies and lessons learned

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Since May 2020, the COVID-19 Literature Situation Report, an initiative led by the UW MetaCenter for Pandemic Preparedness and Global Health Security and START Center focused on the needs of public health professionals in Washington State, has released daily newsletters that provide a succinct summary of the latest scientific literature related to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Behind the scenes, Drs. Brandon Guthrie and Jennifer Ross of the Department of Global Health are leading a team of faculty and students from the Schools of Public Health and Medicine to release these reports every day.  The report includes brief, concise summarizes of 10-15 articles that they judge to have the highest public health relevance, along with additional links to pertinent commentaries and other resources.

In July, the team compiled a list of countries and their school reopening strategies for the WA State Department of Health.  As school districts across the U.S. struggle with how, or even if, to reopen schools in time for the new academic year, these reports offer lessons learned from other countries that may inform plans for school reopening. (more…)

May 26, 2020

Global WACh thanks health heroes on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic


For months, healthcare workers around the world have been on the frontlines of battling the novel coronavirus disease.  They put themselves in the path of this virus, often working long hours with limited resources, to treat patients suffering from COVID-19.  Doctors, nurses, technicians, transporters, EMTs, pharmacists and everyone who supports patient care are rising to the occasion and caring for our most vulnerable populations.

Global WACh sincerely thanks healthcare workers and first responders for all they have done and will continue to do.  Some of these responders in Seattle are among our own team.  We are full of gratitude for their commitment, dedication, and courage.  Read how our clinical colleagues are responding to the call for public health action.


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