Meet Prof. Collins Ouma, APHRC’s New Program Leader of the Health Challenges and Systems Research Program

December 5, 2014

Prof. Collins Ouma joined the Center on December 1, 2014, as Research Scientist and Program Leader of the Health Challenges and Systems (HCS) Research Program. Prof. Ouma takes this role from Dr. Catherine Kyobutungi who transitioned into the role of Director of Research effective December 1, 2014. He is a Professor in Biomedical Sciences and until his appointment, served as the Director of Research, Publications and Innovations at Maseno University, Kenya, where he has also held many senior academic and administrative positions including Dean, School of Public Health and Community Development.
Earlier in his career, Prof. Ouma served as a Senior Research Officer with the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) based at the Centre for Global Health and Research (CGHR) in Kisumu, Kenya, and within the National Institutes of Health-funded Severe Malarial Anemia (SMA) Project. A Geneticist by training, Prof. Ouma’s work covers major health challenges in Africa including infectious diseases, neglected tropical diseases, non-communicable diseases, and health systems-related issues.
His work on the genetic basis of severe malarial anemia in pediatric populations has been published in leading international peer-reviewed journals including Nature, Malaria Journal, Infection and Immunity, Human Genetics, BMC Genetics, among others. In recognition of this work, Prof. Ouma received the Pfizer Royal Society Best African Scientist Award in 2010. He is a member of the Kenya National Academy of Sciences.
At APHRC, Prof. Ouma will lead a dynamic team of over 20 multi-disciplinary researchers working on four thematic program areas within the Center’s HCS Research Program: Non-communicable Diseases; Maternal, Newborn and Child Health; Health Systems; and Infectious Diseases and Environmental Health. According to Dr. Alex Ezeh, APHRC’s Executive Director, “Prof. Ouma’s extensive experience in leading research faculty and research programs, overseeing university-wide systems for research-quality assurance, and mentoring graduate students are some of the unique strengths he brings to the position.”