Anita Shankar, PhD, MS

Role: 
Faculty
Medical Anthropologist, Public Health Researcher
Anita Shankar, PhD, MS

Dr. Shankar is a medical anthropologist and public health researcher with Johns Hopkins University, Bloomberg School of Public Health in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences and the Center for Global Clean Air. She is also a faculty member of the Johns Hopkins Center for Clinical Global Health Education. She has more than 20 years of experience in research and programs focused on women’s empowerment, maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS, nutrition, community mobilization, and human resource capacity building.

While serving as faculty with Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for nearly 20 years, she has lived in and/or worked at program field sites in countries including Nepal, India, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Zimbabwe, Kenya, and Bolivia. Her current research focuses on interventions that empower women through increasing their voice, decision-making and individual agency. She recently completed research in Kenya and Bolivia that demonstrated positive impacts of this empowerment training program to significantly increase business capacity, earned income, and enhanced well-being for women and men energy entrepreneurs. She is currently leading an effort to train female energy entrepreneurs globally through a program focused on building gender sensitive business skills, agency-based empowerment, and innovative leadership.

Dr. Shankar has directed several behavioral research studies in conjunction with BJ Medical College in Pune, India, and is co-investigator in a CDC grant to improve capacity of outreach workers working with HIV-positive women to increase the uptake of health services to prevent the transmission of HIV to their children.

Dr. Shankar has served as a consultant to NGOs, governments, and international organizations to improve health programming and monitor impacts. She is a review editor for EcoHealth, a new peer-reviewed journal focused on the co-relationship of environment and health.

Dr. Shankar earned her PhD in medical anthropology and MS in biology from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and has a BS in microbiology from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Screening for Gender Based-violence (GBV) and Feasibility and Acceptability of mHealth GBV Screening and Support Tools

Post Date: 
2014-03-26
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This study was terminated February 14, 2017. Gender-based violence (GBV) is a significant public health issue in India, with estimates that over a third of women and girls are impacted at some point in their lifetime. This pilot qualitative study examined the feasibility of enhancing GBV prevention...

Community Home Based India Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV (COMBIND)

Post Date: 
2013-09-02
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CCGHE is assessing whether equipping Community Health Workers with mobile health technology and involving them in technology training and personal empowerment seminars can help prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV. CHWs who care for HIV + pregnant and nursing women are using the emocha...

Understanding Challenges and Perspectives of Parents about HIV Disclosures to their Children and Develop a Structured HIV Disclosure Model for Pediatric Age Group

Post Date: 
2011-12-08
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This study is terminated. In 2008 an estimated 70,000 children in India were living with HIV, with 21,000 new children are infected each year through mother to child transmission (Singh et al 2008). Increasing availability of antiretroviral treatment (ART) to HIV infected children in India means...

A5225: Phase I/II Dose-Finding Study of High-Dose Fluconazole Treatment in AIDS-Associated Cryptococcal Meningitis

Post Date: 
2009-04-22
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This trial was terminated in March 2015; it was conducted under the AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG) and funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. This multi-country study was conducted in India, Kenyam Peru, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda, United States, and Zimbabwe. A5225/HiFLAC is a...

A5253: Sensitivity and Specificity of Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Screening and Diagnostics in HIV-Infected Individuals

Post Date: 
2009-03-19
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This study was terminated October 15, 2014. An estimated 3 million HIV-infected individuals will enter programs for antiretroviral (ARV) treatment in the coming year, with projected rates of requirement for ARV therapy extending to more than 10 million in sub-Saharan Africa, southeastern Asia, and...

BWI CTU: Baltimore-Washington-India Clinical Trials Unit

Post Date: 
2007-02-02
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Comprising clinical trial sites at Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore, Whitman Walker Health in Washington, DC, and the BJGMC-CCGHE collaboration in Pune, India, the Baltimore-Washington-India Clinical Trials Unit (BWI-CTU) is one of only 25 international HIV/TB clinical trial sites funded by the...

P1060: Phase II, parallel, randomized, clinical trials comparing the responses to initiation of NNRTI-based antiretroviral therapy in HIV-infected infants who have not previously received Single dose Nevirapine for prevention of Mother-to-child HIV...

Post Date: 
2006-03-27
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This study ended June 28, 2015. This multi-country trial was conducted in India, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe under the International Maternal Pediatric Adolescent AIDS Clinical Trials (IMPAACT) Network and funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Full Title...

A5207: Maintaining Options for Mothers Study (MOMS): A Phase II Randomized Comparison of Three Antiretroviral Strategies Administered for 7 or 21 Days to Reduce the Emergence of Nevirapine Resistant HIV-1 Following a Single Intrapartum Dose of Nevirapine

Post Date: 
2004-12-20
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This study was terminated January 16, 2014; it was conducted under the AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG) and funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. A major disadvantage of giving SD NVP is the potential for maternal development of NVP resistance and additional resistance to other...

Mother-to-Child Transmission (MTCT) of HIV: India SWEN Study

Post Date: 
2002-06-07
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This study was officially terminated August 2018. Primary and secondary analyses of the India SWEN study, an NIH-funded phase III randomized controlled trial of an extended nevirapine prophylaxis regimen among 783 HIV-infected pregnant women and their breastfed infants in Pune, India.

Challenges and opportunities for outreach workers in the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV (PMTCT) program in India

Post Date: 
2018-09-04
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PLoS One
PLoS One: Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV program in India is one of the largest in the world, and it relies on outreach workers. Our study looked at challenges and opportunities for outreach workers.

Loss to follow‐up and mortality among HIV‐infected adolescents receiving antiretroviral therapy in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2018-06-25
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HIV Medicine
Over 6 years, one-third of HIV+ adolescents in this study discontinued medical treatment, indicating a critical need for retention counselling and closer clinical monitoring.

Gender-based violence screening methods preferred by women visiting a public hospital in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2018-01-22
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BMC Womens Health
BMC Womens Health : In our study, 23% of women reported experiencing gender based violence, and 90% reported they had never been asked about it in the healthcare setting.

Contraceptive use and factors associated with postpartum surgical sterilization among HIV-infected women in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2015-08-21
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Journal of HIV/AIDS & Social Services
The authors desire to better understand contraceptive practices and factors associated with surgical tubal ligation (STL) among HIV-infected women. Secondary data were obtained from HIV-infected women enrolled in a National Institutes of Health–funded clinical trial assessing the efficacy of...

Challenges to disclosure of HIV status to perinatally infected children: a study of caregiver perspectives in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2014-06-15
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Journal of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Effective guidelines around disclosure of HIV status are lacking and limited data from India reveal low rates of HIV disclosure to perinatally infected children. This study, conducted in Pune, India, attempts to understand the experiences of caregivers of perinatally infected children around the...

Gender-related barriers and delays in accessing tuberculosis diagnostic and treatment services - Part 2: a systematic review of qualitative studies

Post Date: 
2014-05-11
Publication: 
Tuberculosis Research and Treatment
Background: Tuberculosis (TB) remains a significant global public health problem with known gender-related (male versus female) disparities. We reviewed the qualitative evidence (written/spoken narrative) for gender-related differences limiting TB service access from symptom onset to treatment...

HIV/AIDS education in traditional Indian systems of medicine: faculty perspectives

Post Date: 
2013-10-24
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Journal of Traditional Medicine and and Clinical Naturopathy
In India, HIV-infected individuals face numerous challenges in their search for treatments. Currently, western allopathic medicine (hereinafter ‘biomedicine’) offers antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV/AIDS and associated co-morbidities that have prolonged survival and improved quality of...

Growth patterns among HIV-exposed infants receiving nevirapine prophylaxis in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2012-10-31
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BMC Infectious Diseases
Background: India has among the highest rates of infant malnutrition. Few studies investigating the growth patterns of HIV-exposed infants in India or the impact of timing of HIV infection on growth in settings such as India exist. Methods: We used data from the Six Week Extended Nevirapine (SWEN)...

Impact of maternal human immunodeficiency virus infection on pregnancy and birth outcomes in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2011-12-15
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AIDS Care
Little is known about birth outcomes for HIV-infected women in India. We examine maternal and neonatal birth outcomes in HIV-infected women within the context of enhanced pre-natal care associated with a randomized clinical trial conducted in Pune, India. Birth outcomes of 212 HIV-infected pregnant...

Twelve month follow-up of the SWEN randomized controlled trials: Differential impact of extended-dose nevirapine on mother-to-child transmission and infant death by maternal CD4 cell count

Post Date: 
2011-03-27
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AIDS Care
Objectives: We previously reported combined analysis of 6-week and 6-month endpoints of three randomized controlled trials [Six Week Extended Dose Nevirapine (SWEN) trials] that compared extended-dose nevirapine through 6 weeks of age to single-dose nevirapine to prevent HIV transmission via...

Extended-dose nevirapine to 6 weeks of age for infants to prevent HIV transmission via breastfeeding in Ethiopia, India, and Uganda: an analysis of three randomized controlled trials

Post Date: 
2009-07-26
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The Lancet
Background: UNICEF/WHO recommends that infants born to HIV-infected mothers who do not have access to acceptable, feasible, affordable, sustainable, and safe replacement feeding should be exclusively breastfed for at least 6 months. The aim of three trials in Ethiopia, India, and Uganda was to...

Repeated pregnancy in HIV positive Indian women with known HIV status

Post Date: 
2008-09-29
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AIDS Care
HIV-positive women of reproductive age face challenges in decision making related to pregnancy. Understanding factors influencing repeat pregnancies in women with known HIV status are necessary to guide interventions and counseling strategies to better inform and support them. We compared three...

Nurses’ health education program in India increases HIV knowledge and reduces fear

Post Date: 
2007-11-30
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Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care
Few health care facilities are adequately prepared to manage and care for HIV/AIDS patients in India. Nurses play a critical role in patient care but are often ill-equipped to deal with their own fears of occupational risk and handle the clinical aspects of HIV/AIDS care, leading to stigma and...

Feasibility of voluntary counseling and testing services for HIV among pregnant women presenting in labor in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2005-08-01
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international Journal of STD & AIDS
Factors affecting the eligibility and acceptability of voluntary counselling and rapid HIV testing (VCT) were examined among pregnant womenpresenting in labour in Pune, India. Of the 6702 total women appearing at the delivery room from April 2001 to March 2002, 4638 (69%) were admitted for normal...

Making the choice: the translation of global HIV and infant feeding policy to local practice among mothers in Pune, India

Post Date: 
2005-04-15
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The Journal of Nutrition
In 2003, India had over 5.1 million infected individuals living with HIV/AIDS. The percentage of all HIV cases attributed to perinatal transmission has been increasing steadily from 0.33% of total cases in 1999 to 2.80% in 2004. Recent statistics indicate that over 130,000 infants have been...

Mobile Health and Behavioral PMTCT Intervention among Community Health Workers Improves Exclusive Breastfeeding and Early Infant Diagnosis in India: A Cluster Randomized Trial

Post Date: 
2018-07-24
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Suryavanshi N, Kadam A, Hegde A, Sivalenka S, Kumar VS, McKenzie-White J, Kanade S, Gupta A, Bollinger RC, Shankar A, Gupte N, Mave V. Mobile Health and Behavioral PMTCT Intervention among Community Health Workers Improves Exclusive Breastfeeding and Early Infant Diagnosis in India: A Cluster...

Outreach Workers in the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV (PMTCT) Programme in India: Challenges and Opportunities

Post Date: 
2016-07-21
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Suryavanshi N , Mave V, Kadam A, Kanade S, Sivalenka S, Sampath K, Harve P, Gupta RS, Hegde A, McKenzie-White J, Gupte N, Gupta A, Bollinger RC, Shankar AV. Outreach Workers in the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV (PMTCT) Programme in India: Challenges and Opportunities. 21st...

Naira Kalra

Naira Kalra is a doctoral student at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (2019). In 2015, she conducted a field study in Pune, India, under the guidance of Dr. Anita Shankar, on interventions that address gender-based violence and reproductive health. She is a 2015 recipent of the Global Health Established Field Placement Grant.