Influenza Burden and Seasonality Pregnant Women and Infants in Mali
Pregnant women and infants are at increased risk of acquiring influenza which can lead to severe outcomes, such as hospitalization and even death. Nearly all flu risk information stems from temperate regions of the world, and little information exists on flu among high-risk groups in tropical zones. The highest incidence rates of respiratory illness among children are found in Africa, where co-morbid conditions, such as HIV are prevalent, and increase the risk of severe flu outcomes. Given the limited knowledge of flu in Africa, it is impossible to mount public health interventions, and few measures are in place. My dissertation will establish the burden of influenza and describe the demographic, biological and environmental risk factors associated with flu among high-risk groups in Mali, specifically in pregnant women and infants <6 months and their household members, provide insight into household transmission dynamics of influenza, and identify opportunities for local prevention efforts.