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School of Public Health
College of Health Sciences, Makerere University

The Department of Community Health and Behavioural Sciences

Academic Programmes in the Department

The Department houses two graduate academic programmes these are;

Master of Public Health Nutrition (MPHN).

During 2011/2012 the department developed the Master of Public Health Nutrition (MPHN). Today the MPHN has produced over 50 graduates and over 70 students have been registered in the programme. These include both international and national students.

Master of Public Health Disaster Management (MPHDM).

The department developed and runs a graduate training program- Master of Public Health Disaster Management (MPHDM). This is the only one of the kind in Sub Saharan Africa hence has attracted international students, from Malawi, Sierra Leone, Liberia, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen. Currently the 6th cohort of training with 13 students is ongoing. A total of over 25 trainees have graduated, with a total enrolment of 47 students.

Short Courses:

In addition the department runs two short courses on an annual basis;

Public Health in Complex Emergencies and

Makerere University School of Public Health invites applications for a one-week training programme in Public Health in Complex Emergency (PHCE) that will take place from 4th to 9th November, 2019.

The goal of the course is to enhance the capacity of humanitarian assistance workers and their organisations to respond to health needs of refugees and displaced persons affected by these emergencies.

Follow the link for more details

Advanced Qualitative Research Methods:

The aim of this course is to improve the quality of health research by equipping researchers with advanced qualitative research theories and skills. It is suitable for various practitioners and researchers including postgraduates of various disciplines and PhD Students. The two weeks course is in response to the increasing demand for Qualitative research and analytical skills at various places of work including among post graduate students and researchers.

Teaching and Learning

The faculties in the department teach, coordinate and facilitate sexual and reproductive health across all school academic programs. These include graduate programmes of Masters of public Health (MPH), MPHN, Master of Health Systems Research (MHSR), MPHDM) as well as the undergraduate Bachelor of Environmental Health Science (BEHS) academic programme.


The Department has several collaborations with international Universities and development partners such as UNFPA, WHO, UNICEF etc. One of the outstanding collaborations, that the department has is with the Erasmus University in the Netherlands. Together they are collaborating in the implementation of a project called “Strengthening Education and Training in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Uganda (SET-SRHR)”. Through this project the School received over 1billion Uganda shillings towards infrastructure development of the new School of Public Health building as well as renovation of the Kasangati Satellite Campus. Other Universities that they collaborate with include John Hopkins University, University of South California, University of Colorado and Columba University in the USA.

Research Projects at the Department



GeoHealth Hub NIH/IDRC

Associate Professor Lynn Atuyambe (Ph.D.) is the Principal Investigator for an NIH funded project “The Eastern Africa Global Environmental and Occupational Health Hub (GEOHealth-Hub) Makerere University”. This project partners with University of South California and three eastern Africa countries (Addis Ababa University, University of Nairobi and University of Rwanda)  dealing with air quality monitoring and lung health research in Kampala city. Project aim is to assess and compare the short-term effects of temporal fluctuations in ambient particulate matter (PM2.5) on overall and cause-specific hospitalization and mortality in Kampala. Specifically, this study measures daily levels of ambient PM2.5 as well as measure lung functioning among School going children in Kampala

NICHE Project

The Strengthening Education and Training in Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SET-SRHR) Project is a 4-year (2016-2020) project funded by Nuffic and implemented by a consortium of 4 partners from Netherlands (International Institute of Social Studies & Rutgers) and Uganda (Makerere University School of Public Health & Nsamizi Training Institute for Social Development). The overall project aim is to increase access to and improve quality of SRHR services that contribute to sustainable demographic and human capital development and inclusive economic growth. This is achieved through training and education, research and community of practice dialogue and engagement with policy makers.


The e-partograph project was Implemented in the refugee hosting district of Adjumani, West Nile. The e-partograph is an electronic prototype of the paper- based partograph that automatically plots the vital trends in labor and childbirth. It is fitted with alarm systems to alert health workers and ensure timely examination. The e-partograph at a rural PHC facility is synchronized with another screen at the referral facility through internet-based connection to enable real-time information sharing and, decision-making for lifesaving obstetric interventions and referral

FATHUM project

The FATHUM (Forecasts for Anticipatory Humanitarian Action) project is a 3 year research project being implemented by Makerere University School of Public Health in collaboration with Technical University of Mozambique, Stellenbosch University, University of Reading and Oxford University. The purpose of the project is to assess the impact of forecast based financing (fbf) intervention on reducing the impact of floods. In Uganda the study is being implemented in the Teso sub region (Amuria district- Intervention area and Katakwi district- Control area) in partnership with the Uganda Red Cross Society and the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Center.

Trends in Sanitation Related Diseases between 2011 – 2017 among the Uganda Sanitation Fund Supported Districts

The main objective of this assignment was to establish the trends in sanitation related diseases among the 30 USF supported districts over 6 years (2011-2017) in order to assess the effect of sanitation interventions and make appropriate recommendations for improving and expanding the program. This study used a before and after intervention approach. Records were reviewed and later qualitative and quantitative data was collected.

UNFPA-Family Planning

Under this project, UNFPA contracted MaKSPH to support eight districts in developing district-specific Family Planning Costed Implementation Plans for Arua, Koboko, Kyegegwa, Kikuube, Kamwenge, Bundibugyo, Isingiro, and Nabiratuk districts. The district specific CIP (2019-2023) enables the district to implement the national response through translating the national FP-CIP into a local government response.


PREterm Post-discharge Peer-support care (PREpare) project is a collaboration between MakSPH and the University of Oxford UK, National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (NPEU) and the Nuffield Department of Population Health (NDPH). The project aims to develop a peer-support intervention to improve post-discharge care and outcomes for preterm babies, and contribute to promoting child survival in Uganda.

Boston Makerere Humanitarian Project

This is a staff and student exchange project between Makerere University and Boston University. In July 2019, 17 Students from Boston University and 7 staff had a Summer School in Uganda. They were joined by 7 graduate students of MDM, MPHN, and 5 students of Bachelors of Biomedical Engineering from Makerere. The students jointly developed 5 innovative engineering solutions to address refugee problems following their visits to Adjumani refugee settlement, in West Nile.

RAN Nutrition Project – An integrated model to prevent malnutrition among mothers and children 0-2 years in Uganda

Makerere University School of Public Health partners with Makerere University School of Food Technology, Nutrition and Bio-engineering, and a commercial processor to refine a fortified supplementary food product that prevents malnutrition among mothers and children in the 24 months of the infant from the time of conception. The project vision is to have healthy children and mothers, who are empowered to care for their children, and prevent frequent childhood illnesses. The fortified food product is made from locally available foods that has passed all food safety tests and is to be on the market soon. A documentary about the product can be accessed here