The University of Iowa

In the news: UI’s own Barbara Kagima uses geographic tools to study public health in her home country of Kenya

October 9th, 2019

Ph.D. student Barbara Kagima poses for a portrait in downtown Iowa City on October 6th, 2019. Kagima is studying the treatment of hypertension and public health awareness in Kenyan villages.

Cory Tays, The Daily Iowan 

University of Iowa Ph.D. candidate and Stanley Award for International Research winner Barbara Kagima recently spent a month in her home country of Kenya, visiting cities and villages to conduct preliminary research on the increasing prevalence of noncommunicable diseases in the area, particularly hypertension. 

Kagima’s preliminary assessment looked into whether she could complete further research on the subject for her dissertation. Kagima moved to Iowa from Kenya during grade school and hopes to provide deeper insight into an issue in the region that only caught the attention of researchers in the last four years. 

“Medicine and health in Sub-Saharan Africa has historically focused on malaria, HIV, [and] maternal health, but as economies continue to develop and people adapt to new diets and lifestyles, noncommunicable diseases have increased in prevalence,” Kagima said. “The patterns of these diseases are not well understood.”