Kafui Adjaye-Gbewonyo, Research Fellow

Kafui Adjaye-Gbewonyo is a Research Fellow in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School working with Working Group 1 of the Lancet NCDI Poverty Commission. She received her Doctor of Science in Social and Behavioral Sciences from the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health with a focus on social epidemiology, population health, and quantitative research methods. Her dissertation examined the relationship between income inequality, social capital, and risk factors for cardiovascular disease and depression in South Africa. Her previous training includes a master's degree in public health as well as undergraduate studies in environmental science and public policy at Harvard where she conducted fieldwork in Ghana. Prior to her doctoral studies, she completed a year-long fellowship at the Division of Cancer Prevention and Control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Kafui is particularly interested in the effects of social and economic factors on non-communicable diseases and health in African countries. 


Mamka Anyona, Research Assistant

Mamka Anyona is in her second year of the Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) degree at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, focusing on global health systems and health policy.

Mamka’s interest in non-communicable disease prevention and control was peaked whilst working as a dental surgeon in Kenya’s public healthcare system, serving rural populations who were severely underserved with respect to access to NCD services. She completed her Masters of International Health (MIH) degree at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark and went on to work with the WHO EURO’s Division of NCDs and Life Course in 2013. She then returned to Kenya and spent a year working with the Aga Khan University Hospital, East Africa helping the university set up a Non-Communicable Diseases Research to Policy Unit, where she remains in an advisory role to date.

During her time at HSPH, Mamka has been working for the Ministerial Leadership in Health program and is also involved with the Lancet Pediatric Oncology team led by Prof. Rifat Atun. She is also the co-president of the Harvard Chan Africa Student’s Health Forum and is also part of the committee for the International Development Conference, 2017, hosted by the Harvard Kennedy School.

Her career interests lay in health systems and policy, and in global health governance and she hopes to keep engaging with these subjects especially in the context of global NCDs prevention and control after her DrPH.


Amiya Bhatia, Research Assistant

Amiya is a doctoral student at the Harvard School of Public Health interested in program design and evaluation for child and adolescent health programs. At Harvard she is combining the study of epidemiology, anthropology, ethics and economics to understand the causes, structures and policies that drive health inequalities and unequal access to care. Before moving to Boston, Amiya lived in Ethiopia and coordinated a study on the organizational development of NGOs and previously in India where she worked with NGOs serving children affected by HIV and studied disclosure of HIV status to children. She has also worked for the GAVI Alliance in Geneva and the Gates Foundation in Seattle. After graduation, Amiya hopes to work with and learn from child health and child protection programs in South Asia. Amiya grew up in Nepal and holds a MS is Public Health from Harvard School of Public Health and BA in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge, UK. She enjoys photography, exploring street markets and national parks, playing the bamboo flute and attempting to learn the harmonica.


Matt Coates, Research Associate

Matt Coates (MPH) is a research associate with the Program in Global NCDs and Social Change at Harvard Medical School. His research on the NCDI Poverty Commission focuses on quantifying noncommunicable disease and injury risk factors exposures and disease burden in the poorest billion people. He also helps coordinate research assistant work on the NCDI Poverty national commissions and groups, and on additional analyses contributing to the commission. Previously, he worked on demographic estimation and disease burden attribution to alcohol as a risk factor for the Global Burden of Disease project at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. He obtained his MPH in Global Health Metrics and Evaluation from the University of Washington. His MPH thesis was on the differential child mortality rates between orphans and non-orphans, and the resulting effect that the sampling bias in birth histories has on child mortality estimates. 


Andrea Feigl, Research Associate

Andrea Feigl-Ding (MPH, PhD) is a global health economist working with the Program in NCDs and Social Change on the Lancet Commission on Reframing NCDs for the Poorest Billion.

Her research focuses on health financing and governance, universal healthcare and cost-effectiveness of chronic disease interventions in developing countries. Her works include leading the largest worldwide longitudinal analysis of the political, social, and economic determinants of universal healthcare in 196 countries (published in Health Policy), leading the impact evaluation of a nationwide anti-smoking legislation in Chile (published in WHO Bulletin), and leading the impact study of the award-winning intervention program for obesity/diabetes prevention in Amman, Jordan (project awarded Global Health Project of the Year from Consortium of Universities for Global Health). She is also recognized as the innovator of the Evidenced Formal Coverage Index metric for universal healthcare coverage, focused on comparative health economics of achieving UHC.

She received her PhD in global health from Harvard University, her MPH and BSc (First Class Honors) with a full scholarship from Simon Fraser University in Canada, and was a graduate of the Red Cross Nordic United World College in Norway.


Arielle Eagan, Research Assistant

Arielle Eagan (MSW, LCSW) is a Research Assistant in the Harvard Medical School’s Department for Global Health and Social Medicine, supporting the Lancet Commission on Reframing NCDs for the Poorest Billion. In addition, Ms. Eagan serves as a research fellow in the NCD Division and Medical Procurement and Production Divisions of the Rwandan Biomedical Center/Rwanda Ministry of Health. Clinically, as an Oncology and Palliative Care Clinical Social Worker, Arielle works across Pediatric and Adult Oncology/Hematology, Intensive Care, and Emergency Medicine settings at Floating Hospital for Children/Tufts Medical Center in Boston.

Prior to these positions, Arielle was the Rwanda Research Fellow through the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, through which she had the honor of serving Dr. Agnes Binagwaho during her time as the Minister of Health of Rwanda and in her academic affiliations. Arielle received her Master and Bachelor degrees from Boston College. As a Fellow with the Inter-Professional Palliative Care Fellowship through Harvard Medical School, Arielle trained with the Pediatric Advanced Care Team (PACT) at Boston Children's Hospital and Dana Farber Cancer Institute under the leadership of Dr. Joanne Wolfe and Ms. Marsha Joselow. Fully engaged in the international global health space in 2014 through the Global Health Corps Fellowship, Arielle assisting with the development and implementation of psychosocial programming for adolescents with HIV/AIDS in Zambia. Arielle also provided strategic technical support at Zambia’s Cancer Diseases Hospital around research development, proposal writing, and psychosocial care. 

Arielle has a strong interest in research and strategic planning around comprehensive health system strengthening, as well as the development and study of clinical assessment and decision making tools, equitable and ethical care delivery models, and integrated psychosocial oncology care.


Alex Kintu, Research Assistant

Alex Kintu (MD, MS) is a candidate in the Doctor of Science (SD) program in Global Health and Population at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He previously trained as a medical doctor in Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Uganda and holds an MS. Epidemiology degree from University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA.

Before joining graduate school, Alex worked as a physician in rural western Uganda where he oversaw the initial rollout of HIV treatment and care services with funding from the Presidents Emergency Fund for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). He also worked as a safety monitor in the Partners clinical trial on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) against HIV acquisition.

Alex’s doctoral research involves assessing the impact of HIV and antiretroviral therapy (ART) on cardiovascular diseases (CVD) as well as evaluating interventions for integrating CVD care into existing healthcare services in sub-Saharan Africa. He has more recently been involved in work projects in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Malawi and South Africa.


Jon Shaffer, Research Assistant

Jon Shaffer is a PhD student in sociology at Boston University who is interested in studying and advancing the social movement for the right to quality health care. Jon graduated from Northwestern University in 2009 with a major in biomedical engineering focused on developing therapeutic and diagnostic devices for the developing world. Shortly after graduating, Jon served as the executive director of GlobeMed, a student-driven global health organization that grew to more than 60 university-based chapters working side by side with more than 60 grassroots health organizations serving poor and marginalized communities. After three years serving with GlobeMed, Jon moved to Partners In Health to work as the Senior Strategist for Grassroots Organizing and spent five years working to develop a novel grassroots community organizing advocacy program called PIH Engage. 


Akshar Saxena, Research Assistant

Akshar Saxena is a doctoral candidate in global health economics at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. His research spans economics of aging, non-communicable diseases, and primary care provision in Africa, Asia, and the USA. He is currently working on macroeconomics of aging, analyzing the dynamics between health, retirement, social security reform, and insurance. He was a Senior Health Policy Analyst at the Ministry of Health in Singapore. He holds a B.A. in Economics from the National University of Singapore and a Master in Public Policy from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. 


Azhra Syed, Research Assistant

Azhra Syed is a recent graduate from the Harvard Chan School. Her interests lie in health systems strengthening and the role of health equity in development and poverty alleviation. She also has some expertise in tobacco control. As a clinician, she has worked in both urban and rural settings in India, with providing oral healthcare and preventive efforts for oral cancer. She holds an MPH (in Global Health) from the Harvard Chan School and a B.D.S. (equivalent to the U.S. DDS/DMD) from India.