Examining How Barriers to Service Utilization and Poor Quality of Care Affect Obstetrical and HIV Treatment Outcomes and What Can Be Done About Them
In this presentation, Dr. Catherine Pirkle describes how barriers to health service utilization and poor quality of care affect several obstetrical and HIV treatment outcomes in French-speaking West Africa. First, she provides evidence that access barriers to antiretroviral treatment for HIV/AIDS differ by sex. Second, she quantifies the relation of poor geographic access to obstetrical care to maternal mortality. Next, she describes how medical professionals balance concerns about clinical success with socioeconomic vulnerability when selecting which individuals should receive fee-exemptions for antiretroviral treatment. From there, Dr. Pirkle demonstrates that poor obstetrical quality of care contributes to maternal and perinatal deaths, while describing an intervention that improved quality of care across 23 referral hospitals in West Africa. Finally, she presents her current research and programs that she is developing.
Catherine M. Pirkle is a Canadian Institutes of Health Research supported post-doctoral fellow at the Université Laval, in Quebec City, where she is investigating determinants and measurement of food insecurity in remote settings. Some of her research includes describing the consequences of food insecurity on micronutrient status and childhood growth, investigating micronutrient and contaminant interactions in food insecure populations, and updating medical guidelines for addressing elevated mercury levels in remote populations. Dr. Pirkle holds a PhD in public health and epidemiology from the Université de Montréal for her PhD dissertation on quality of care and maternal mortality in West Africa. Dr. Pirkleʻs areas of expertise include: maternal and neonatal health, epidemiology, health systems research, remote and rural settings, measurement and scale development, food security, environmental contaminants and gender. She has done global health research in the following locations: Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, the Canadian Arctic, Québec, Ontario, Albania, Colombia, Brazil, and Bermuda.