My mission for the major research effort is to define the prevalence of infection due to Trypanosoma cruzi (Chagas Disease) in the human population of the Toledo District of Belize. The project is centered in Punta Gorda, Belize, but has involved the entire District. This is being accomplished by a village-to-village assessment and the determination of the presence/absence of antibody as detected by a commercial ELISA test. In the process of doing this, the general health and the tropical medicine characteristics of the same population are being assessed.
During the term of this project, three Infectious Diseases fellows, one Internal Medicine resident, one Infectious Diseases faculty member (other than myself), two physicians not associated with academia, and one Ph.D. scientist from the University of the Yucatan in Merida, Mexico, have assisted my efforts.
I have also evaluated the prevalence of antibody to Trypanosoma cruzi in the Hispanic surnamed population of Parkland Health & Hospital System, and in another study evaluated the prevalence of such antibody in the population of Hispanic surnamed women giving birth at Parkland Memorial Hospital.
In addition to this project, I have an ongoing interest in tropical medicine, general infectious diseases, and clinical microbiology.
I served as the Secretary/Treasurer of the American Committee for Clinical Tropical Medicine and Travelers Health (the clinical section of the American society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene) during the term of 2010-2012. I am currently the Director of the Infectious Diseases Fellowship Program.