Tristan Perez, 2014, Molecular Biology

I interned at the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU) in Nepal, working on an independent research project focused on the economic burden of Enteric Fever, which is endemic within the country. Information on the cost of treatment could affect public policy and could provide a reason to implement a vaccination program. I was focused on finding an approximate dollar amount spent on direct medical costs as well as ­indirect costs – which includes money lost by taking time off work – to ­household ­during the course of the illness. This would give a general picture of how much a family is impacted by a family member with Typhoid Fever. In order to collect data I ­interviewed follow-up patients in the Outpatient Department (OPD) using a questionnaire I had ­designed. I was also able to observe the OPD and visit patients in their homes in the ­impoverished sectors of Kathmandu. I learned a lot about how the health system in ­underdeveloped countries functions and how public policy is determined. I hope to continue to study infectious diseases and how they affect populations.