Craig Janes and research team awarded more than 500K in funding

Friday, July 30, 2021

“Impact of flooding on the accessibility and utilization of health services in Western Province, Zambia” project receives more than $500,000 over three years

Craig Janes is a Professor in the School of Public Health Sciences and a member of IC3 and the Water Institute.


Article written by: The Water Institute

Congratulations to Craig Janes, professor and director of the School of Public Health Sciences, along with colleague Jennifer Liu, professor and chair of the Department of Anthropology, and their research team, who have been awarded funding through a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Project Grant.

Their project “Impact of flooding on the accessibility and utilization of health services in Western Province, Zambia” has been awarded more than $500,000 over three years.

This project flourished due to a Water Institute seed grant to Craig Janes and colleagues in 2016 entitled, “Implementing a Satellite-based GIS Imaging System to Inform Health System Planning in Western District, Zambia”. The seed grant, plus a grant from the UK-Natural Environment Research Council in 2017 to colleague Chris Thomas (co-investigator on the seed grant), laid the conceptual, technical, and methodological groundwork for this project.

Initial funding also, importantly, supported the development of local networks and the creation of the Zambezi Ecohealth Partnership – a knowledge platform dedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of communities in the Zambezi River watershed.

This newly-funded project will enable researchers to assess the impact of increasing variable seasonal flooding on access and utilization of high priority health services (e.g., maternal health care, HIV prevention and care) and develop models that will scale to regional/national levels.

“For me, one of the most exciting and promising aspects of this project is our exceptional interdisciplinary and international team, hailing from Zambia, the UK, Hong Kong, and Canada, and representing diverse disciplines — medicine, epidemiology, health services research, anthropology, geography, and ecology. This will be a complex project, but one that I think will be highly innovative and transformative in its approach to addressing the human costs of climate change,” says Janes.

Highly innovative and transformative in its approach to addressing the human costs of climate change.

The team will also assess whether the Zambia-based models and methodology are relevant to other jurisdictions, including rural and remote communities in Canada. To their knowledge, the proposed study is the first to analyze health care access and utilization in a dynamically modelled, social-ecological system.

Congratulations to the project team: C. Janes, K. Grépin, Z. Butt, F. Goma, J. Liu, D. Singini, M. Smith, C. Thomas and C. Wallace.

ClinicFlood plainDipper
(L) Health centre in Zambia on the floodplain with families queueing for vaccines.

Group photo of researchers
Western Provincial Health Office – Far left: Chris Thomas, second from right Craig Janes, far-right Andrew Silumesi, Director of Public Health for the Zambia Ministry of Health.

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