2015-2016 Humphrey Fellow Biographies


Bachelor of Social Sciences
M.Sc. (Preventive Medicine)

Ms. Alencar has had training and professional skill development in Social Sciences and Public Health, with an emphasis in HIV/ AIDS and Global Health for the past 15 years. With background in sociology, anthropology and political science, she has contributed to addressing public health issues at the Ministry of Health in Brazil. She works as a social policy analyst in the STI, AIDS and Virus Hepatitis Department coordinating, monitoring, and evaluating international projects. She has led international technical cooperation activities dealing with health care in over 14 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. After performing a rapid needs analysis in a given region, she works with local officals to develop an action plan, seeks necessary funding in Brazil, and manages plan implementation.

Ms. Alencar has also worked in research teams studying HIV/AIDS quality of care and antiretrovirals adherence in Brazil and conducted joint work with civil society partners and other government agencies in topics related to health, HIV/AIDS and vulnerable populations. As a Humphrey fellow, Tatianna is interested in learning more about HIV/AIDS combination prevention programs that could help most affected groups in Brazil, such as young gay men, and in improving her knowledge on multilateral HIV/AIDS programs.


MD, Family Physician
Master of Science in Epidemiology

Dr. Chueiri has 13 years of experience, seven of which she has spent as a family physician. She practiced medicine in São Paulo, Brazil, where she was also a professor in São Camilo University and taught Public Health and Primary Care courses. She also earned a Master of Science in Epidemiology at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, where she focused her studies in evaluation of health care services. Dr. Chueiri is continuing this focus as she pursues a PhD in Epidemiology. She has worked for the Ministry of Health in Brazil for the past six years, first as a Director Assistant at the Primary Care Department and more recently she was nominated to be the General Coordinator of the Chronic Conditions Care Policies in the Department of Specialized Care.

While working for the federal government, Dr. Chueiri coordinated the review of two national policies: The Primary Care Policy and The Cancer Policy. She also participated in the development of the National Primary Care Quality Evaluation Program as well as contributed to publication of managerial documents to help Brazilian states and municipalities to strengthen their local health policies.

As a Humphrey Fellow, Dr. Chueiri expects to increase her knowledge in public health policy and management as well as health care systems monitoring and evaluation. She also seeks to improve her skills in developing evidence-based policies and effective management.

Dilshad Bano

MD, Family Physician
Master of Science in Agriculture, with specialization in Environmental Sciences

Ms. Bano has over eight years of experience in public health, monitoring and evaluation with national and international NGOs and government organizations. She worked with National AIDS Federation Pakistan and successfully completed four projects on prevention and control of HIV & AIDS among out of school youth, jail inmates, men having sex with men (MSM) and border traders. She also worked with People’s Primary Health Care Initiatives and was responsible for monitoring and evaluation of eight components of primary health care. While working with International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), she established Environmental Clubs in seven schools and developed a module for teachers on environmental education. Her most recent work has been with the Aga Khan Health Services Pakistan, in its project “Central Asia Health System Strengthening Program.” She has been an active volunteer in community services for the Aga Khan Health Board and Aga Khan Social Welfare Board to bring positive changes in poor and marginalized communities of the region.

During her Humphrey Fellowship, Ms. Bano is interested in exploring the management of the US healthcare system. She intends to enhance her strategic management skills in global health, health care communication, policy analysis and research design. Her specific interest is to design effective and holistic community-oriented programs to combat the impact of climate change and public health programs focusing on building community resilience to better serve her country. She is looking forward to connecting with public health organizations and professionals to tackle national and global health issues.

Mohamed Ragab Abdelrahman Farag

Diploma in Hospital Administration
Bachelor Degree in Commerce

Mr. Farag (Zenda) has worked as a public health administrator for a Ministry of Health public hospital since 2004. His responsibilities included implementation of regulations, monitoring type of illness and injuries of admitted patients to assess community health risks, and development of awareness and educational programs on how to stay healthy, how to fight disease and epidemics, and how to identify healthy and safe food. He has experience working with NGOs and community based organizations involved in working with poor and homeless people through multiple non-profit organizations. Recently, he has been involved in initiating a National Program for School Nutrition, a program that offers tips, tools and public health support to help Egypt's schools create a healthy nutrition environment.

As a Humphrey Fellow, Mr. Farag hopes to gain knowledge about public health policy, monitoring and evaluation of health programs, implementation of effective and efficient public health programs, and medical facilities administration. He also plans to explore the US public health system as it relates to food safety especially in schools and wants to build professional affiliations with organizations specialized in nutrition, food safety, and safe school environment.

Edward Eremugo Luka Kenyi

MBBS, Master of Public Health

Dr. Kenyi has worked with several organizations in public health and primary health care programs in Sudan and, since 2004, in South Sudan. As Program Manager for Khartoum State and later as Head of Operations in Sudan, he led the Ministry of Health team for the control of leprosy and worked as the Primary Health Care Officer in the Sudan Health Transformation Project, delivering primary health care services in the country. He is an active participant in the organization of health care in South Sudan, serving in various positions such as the President of the South Sudan Doctors’ Association and a member of the newly established South Sudan General Medical Council. He has also served as Editor for the South Sudan Medical Journal since 2010.

Before joining the Humphrey Fellowship, Dr. Kenyi was working as the Deputy Chief of Party for the Integrated Services Delivery Program (ISDP), an NGO in South Sudan. He is passionate about reproductive health and wants to see the implementation of relevant interventions that will ensure pregnant women receive all the care and services needed in order to reduce the high maternal mortality and morbidity in the world’s newest country.

Dilyafruz Khudaykulova

Bachelor of Medicine, Master of Public Health (Sweden)

Dr. Dilyafruz Khudaykulova has worked with different international organizations on such topics as tuberculosis, vaccine preventable diseases, and infectious disease surveillance and control for ten years. She most recently worked for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as a National Professional Officer. In this position, she managed a project for HIV prevention among key populations with a special focus on sex workers and men who have sex with men. She worked closely with the Republican AIDS Center of Uzbekistan and developed the curriculum for the Reproductive Health and Rights for People Living with HIV Joint Project. Dr. Khudaykulova also supported initiatives for Voluntarily Testing and Counselling on HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis C for vulnerable groups. Along with this, she also coordinated a program for nosocomial infections control among health workers.

As a Humphrey Fellow, she aims to gain practical and theoretical skills in broad public health issues with a focus in HIV policy. With these skills, she hopes to build community based approaches for HIV affected populations and to strengthen HIV prevention responses tailored to Uzbekistan. She also plans to build professional affiliations with the US public health organizations to develop joint projects in communicable diseases with Uzbekistan.

Ahmed Khan Laghari

Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, Master of Science in Public Health

Dr. Laghari has been working in public health for more than 10 years in different areas such as research, infectious diseases and maternal and child health. He has worked with various NGOs and with the World Health Organization to reduce maternal and child mortality and achieve the Millenium Development Goals in Pakistan. During his most recent assignment, Dr. Laghari worked on Health System Strengthening to improve Maternal and Child Health. He provided technical assistance to three District Health Departments to strengthen the District Health Population and Management Team by using evidence-based findings to influence decision making. Secondly, he provided technical assistance in developing, reporting and monitoring of District Health Information. He also facilitated the Districts to develop a District Action Plan, key performing indicators, and measurement of verifications.

Dr. Laghari is participating in the Humphrey Fellowship Program to develop his skills and strengthen his knowledge in Health Policy and Management in order to reduce the gaps between development of policy and successful implementation. Dr. Laghari plans to continue his work in Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health as technical advisor for the Ministry of Health or in an international organization and to develop policies which are pragmatic, community centered, evaluative, and sustainable.

Sahla Mahjabin

Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, Master of Science in General Surgery

Dr. Mahjabin has been working as the Registrar in the Surgery Department in BIRDEM General Hospital, Dhaka, which has a large volume of services for diabetic patients and provides services to the highest number of outpatients each day. She also taught undergraduate medical students. With a decade long experience in the surgical area, her major focus is diabetic foot care and abdominal surgeries. She has attended courses in the field of public health and obtained the prestigious Next Generation Public Health Professionals Fellowship supported by USAID. She has presented papers in several national and international conferences.

Beyond her hospital engagement, she has contributed to community care by organizing and providing services concerning breast disease, diabetes, and general health issues in remote rural areas.
During her Humphrey Fellowship, Dr. Mahjabin wants to strengthen her skills in public health and understand and observe the American healthcare system. She is most interested in learning about standards in surgical management as well as preventive aspects of breast and colon cancer in order to implement a nationwide preventive program in Bangladesh.

Amadou H. Maiga

License in Sociology and Anthropology, Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Anthropology

Mr. Maiga has ten years of experience in international development, poverty reducing projects, HIV/AIDS prevention, disability and civil affairs through a variety of positions. He most recently worked with the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali. In this position, he addressed three main areas of concern- local governance, civil society, and social cohesion/confidence building. He served as a liaison with local communities and authorities to develop cultural understanding through conflict analysis, early warning of potentially violent situations, information-gathering, assessment of needs, and identification of potential partnerships. Previously, he worked as a Community Development Agent with the PACR, Projet d’Appui aux Communautes Rurales (Rural Communities Development Project), on a rural community development project devoted to reducing poverty by improving people's access to basic needs.

Mr. Maiga also worked with Handicap International from 2012-2014 on HIV/AIDS, gender based violence, physical rehabilitation, victims assistance, and psycho social support to displaced populations beginning with the 2012 crisis in Mali. Throughout his Humphrey Fellowship, Mr. Maiga wants to build relevant professional affiliations with agencies such as USAID, CDC, and the Carter Center due to his interests in governance, leadership, peacekeeping, public health, HIV/AIDS policy and prevention, and research.

Soutongnoma Basilia Coefe Nitiema

MD, Master of Public Health

Dr. Coefe Nitiema started her career working in a rural health district. After her studies in Public Health, she joined Plan Burkina as a Health Program Coordinator for the Center-North Region. She worked for Micronutrient Initiative as a Program Officer in charge of a nationwide program for diarrhea management in children under five years old using zinc and low osmolarity oral rehydration salts. Her responsibilities included designing the program in a participatory approach and providing technical and financial support to the Ministry of Health for program implementation.

She also developed strong partnerships with supporters of child survival including UNICEF, WHO, Terre des Hommes and other NGOs and worked to ensure an appropriate monitoring and evaluation system. As a Humphrey Fellow, she will focus on public health policy and management. She has a special interest in maternal and child health with a particular focus in nutrition.

Phonethipsavanh Nouanthong

B.Sc. in Medical Technology, M.B.A in International Business, M.Sc. in Immunology in HIV/AIDS, Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences

Dr. Nouanthong (Thip) worked as a Medical Technologist at Lao Red Cross Blood Transfusion Center for six years. She received long term training from the AIDS Fogarty International Training Program in Thailand to develop a new reagent and method to enumerate CD4+ lymphocytes for the management of Thai patients with HIV/AIDS. She continued working as a medical research technologist and consultant during a Ph.D. study in Thailand for seven years.

Dr. Nouanthong has had extensive experiences in medical diagnostic testing and drug development as well as immunology, virology and public health research in developing countries (Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos). She has been working as a post-doctoral researcher and Principle Co-Investigator for viral infectious diseases, zoonosis, and vaccine preventable diseases at Institute Pasteur du Laos for the last two years. She has also trained laboratory and medical students for eight years.

Her main objectives as a Humphrey Fellow are to learn more about public health policy and management, grant and manuscript writing, negotiation and conflict management skills development, and economic evaluation of health care projects. In respect to her future research interests, Dr. Nouanthong aims to explore how to integrate strategies of evidence-based research and surveillance systems for public health development.

Irene Yameogo Ngendakumana

M.D, Master in Community Health for the Management of STD and HIV/AIDS programs, MPH

Dr. Yameogo has worked in internal medicine in a public teaching hospital and has been a pioneer in prevention of mother to child HIV transmission (PTMCT). She has over 15 years of experience in HIV control (i.e. treatment of HIV+ patients, prevention work with youth, MSM and prisoners, surveillance of key groups, elimination of mother to child HIV transmission) and development of strategic policies on prevention and training materials. In 2005, she served as HIV program officer for a national NGO, and throughout this period she successfully extended HIV treatment and PTMCT at district levels.

In 2009 she worked on maternal and child health programs with several in-country community based organizations. In 2011, she was recruited as an HIV focal point consultant with the UNICEF Burkina Office. Soon after, she was nominated as the principal technical advisor with the National Council Against AIDS in the Republic of Congo under the Global Fund Projects.

As a Hubert Humphrey Fellow, she will focus on HIV, maternal, adolescent and child health and health economics. She plans to make use of the national response to HIV to similarly improve the prevention and treatment of other chronic diseases such as diabetes. She looks to create a health and education NGO in Burkina Faso.

Sangay Phuntsho

Bachelor of Science, Post Graduate Diploma in Public Administration

Mr. Phuntsho works for the Department of Public Health, Ministry of Health as Program Manager for Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) and Vaccine Preventable Diseases Program (VPDP). His responsibilities include program planning and implementation, monitoring and evaluation, reporting, and facilitating trainings. He also coordinates with government and non-government organizations as well as international development partners like WHO, UNICEF, Japan International Corporation Agency and Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization.

He has experience in immunization and vaccine preventable diseases including sustained high national immunization coverage (>95%) for last several years for polio and measles elimination programs in the country. He has introduced several nationwide new and underutilized vaccines such as Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), DTP-Hep B-Hib (Pentavalent), Inactivated Polio Vaccine (IPV) and Tetanus diphtheria (Td). He is also currently the Vaccine Preventable Diseases Surveillance focal person in the country.

As a Humphrey Fellow, Mr. Phuntsho expects to learn about new vaccines introduction (pneumococcal & rotavirus), vaccine development, pre- and post-vaccine marketing surveillance including adverse events following immunization. He aspires to develop his knowledge in field epidemiology, public health preparedness and response to emergencies, management of emerging and re-emerging diseases, and control and prevention of infectious diseases.

Mariya Sharkova

Master of Law

Mrs. Sharkova works as an attorney in the field of healthcare law, with one of her main clients being the largest university hospital in Bulgaria, Saint George University Hospital. In her current role, she is responsible for a variety of legal issues that are both corporate and healthcare oriented in nature. In 2014, she specialized in a program for attorneys in protection of child rights in Bulgaria. She was also one of the participants in the Bulgarian Young Leaders Program, Junior Justice Professional Training Program in USA, in 2013.

Prior to becoming a lawyer, Mrs. Sharkova worked as an interpreter and researcher for True Vision TV, London, UK. This company created a documentary about children with disabilities living in institutes in Bulgaria. Since 2007, she has worked to address problems of children with disabilities by providing legal advice and help for families with disabled children as well as related organizations.

During her year as a Humphrey Fellow, Mrs. Sharkova would like to gain theoretical and practical skills in communication and dispute resolutions in healthcare, public health law and hospital management. She is also interested in healthcare services for children, especially children with disabilities. She would like to encourage professionals in Bulgaria to implement mediation in healthcare and improve the communication between medical professionals and patients.