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Prof. dr. T.F. Rinke de Wit PhD

Main activities
Research, Teaching
Focus of research

Health analytics in Africa. Collection, analysis and interpretation of African health system data, both with respect to supply of healthcare (medical providers), payment of healthcare (insurance) and demand of healthcare (patients, clients). Impact evaluation of interventions to increase efficiencies in healthcare delivery in Africa. Epidemiological and molecular biological research in particular on the development and evalution of innovative and affordable laboratory diagnostics. Monitoring and surveilance of pathogen drug resistance in African patients, e.g. on 1st and 2nd line antiretroviral treatment. Population surveys with respect to biomedical and socio-economic characteristics of clients of health systems. Research on connectivity of diagnostics to healthcare payment systems.

Key publications
  • Hamers RL, Schuurman R, Sigaloff KCE, Wallis CL, Kityo C, Siwale M, Mandaliya K, Ive P, Botes ME, Wellington M, Osibogun A, Wit FW, van Vugt M, Stevens WS, de Wit TFR, Effect of pretreatment HIV-1 drug resistance on immunological, virological, and drug-resistance outcomes of first-line antiretroviral treatment in sub-Saharan Africa: a multicentre cohort study. LANCET INFECT DIS 2012;12 (4):307-317 [PubMed]
  • Hamers RL, Wallis CL, Kityo C, Siwale M, Mandaliya K, Conradie F, Botes ME, Wellington M, Osibogun A, Sigaloff KCE, Nankya I, Schuurman R, Wit FW, Stevens WS, van Vugt M, de Wit TFR [Contributors: Mandaliya K, Abdallah S, Jao I, Dolan M, Schuurman R, Wensing AM, Hamers RL, Sigaloff KCE, Straatsma E, Wit FW, van Vugt M, Lange JM, Rinke de Wit TF, Osibogun A, Akanmu S, Botes ME, Conradie F, Ive P, Sanne I, Wallis CL, Letsoalo E, Stevens WS, Hardman M, Kityo C, Namayanja G, Nakatudde L, Nankya I, Kiconco M, Abwola M, Mugyenyi P, Ndembi N, Lyagoba F, Kaleebu P, Siwale M, Njovu C, Labib M, Menke J, Wellington M, Luthy R]] , HIV-1 drug resistance in antiretroviral-naive individuals in sub-Saharan Africa after rollout of antiretroviral therapy: a multicentre observational study. LANCET INFECT DIS 2011;11 (10):750-759 [PubMed]
  • Sigaloff KCE, Calis JCJ, Geelen SP, van Vugt M, de Wit TFR, HIV-1-resistance-associated mutations after failure of first-line antiretroviral treatment among children in resource-poor regions: a systematic review. LANCET INFECT DIS 2011;11 (10):769-779 [PubMed]
  • Boender TS, Hoenderboom BM, Sigaloff KCE, Hamers RL, Wellington M, Shamu T, Siwale M, Labib Maksimos EEF, Nankya I, Kityo CM, Adeyemo TA, Akanmu AS, Mandaliya K, Botes ME, Ondoa P, Rinke de Wit TF, Pretreatment HIV drug resistance increases regimen switches in sub-Saharan Africa. CLIN INFECT DIS 2015;61 (11):1749-1758 [PubMed]
  • Hamers RL, Straatsma E, Kityo C, Wallis CL, Stevens WS, Sigaloff KCE, Siwale M, Conradie F, Botes ME, Mandaliya K, Wellington M, Osibogun A, van Vugt M, Rinke de Wit TF, Building Capacity for the Assessment of HIV Drug Resistance: Experiences From the PharmAccess African Studies to Evaluate Resistance Network. CLIN INFECT DIS 2012;54 (4):S261-S265 [PubMed]
All Publications
Curriculum Vitae

Current Responsibilities
At PharmAccess Foundation: responsibility for overall research agenda in collaboration with Amsterdam Institute for Global Health & Development (AIGHD) and Joep Lange Institute. Coordination of  biomedical, socio-economic and anthropological research in the context of PharmAccess interventions in Africa; representation at (inter)national conferences; scientific publications; information dissemination & communication; business development of PharmAccess. At Academic Medical Center (AMC) - AIGHD: responsibility for international (operational) research on healthcare delivery in Africa, in particular (the development of) affordable diagnostics with an emphasis on HIV/AIDS; research on HIV drug resistance in Africa, operational research on HIV test&treat program in Tanzania; business development; supervision of MSc and PhD programs, scientific publishing.


Positions held

• 1986 - 1990: PhD Molecular Medicine, University of Leiden, The Netherlands. Molecular biological characterisation of human transplantation antigens. Basic scientific research in the areas of immunology and molecular biology.

• 1991 - 1993: Senior Scientist at the Armauer Hansen Research Institute (AHRI), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Establishment of the first molecular biological laboratory in Ethiopia. Lecturing at Addis Ababa University, training MSc students. Basic research for vaccine and diagnostics development for leprosy, tuberculosis and leishmaniasis.

• 1994 - 2000: Laboratory Director Ethio-Netherlands AIDS Research Project (ENARP), Ethiopian Health and Nutrition Research Institute (EHNRI), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Management of the National Reference Laboratory for HIV/AIDS in Ethiopia, 35 staff. Lecturing as Honorary Assistant Professor at Addis Ababa University, training MSc and PhD students. Basic immunological and virological research on the natural history of HIV infection in Africa. Establishment of prospective cohort studies and sentinel surveillance programs for HIV/AIDS.

• 2001 – 2011: Director Advocacy, Technology and Research, PharmAccess Foundation, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Development of a pioneering NGO in health systems strengthening, including HIV/AIDS treatment and care in Africa. General resource person, in particular with respect to health intelligence. Advocacy of this NGO at all (inter)national levels, including fund raising activities, project and program design, public-private partnerships and scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals. Development of biomedical technologies, tools, algorithms and protocols to increase efficiency, cost-benefit and effectiveness of healthcare delivery in Africa. Operational research on PharmAccess healthcare interventions, including health insurance approaches.

• 2012 – 2013: Research and Business Development Consultant allocated to the Council for Health Service Accreditation of Southern Africa (CHSASA) by PharmAccess Foundation. Development of SafeCare initiative (international benchmark for quality of healthcare in resource-poor settings: https://c8-pts5h4f75ef3wa-isk.sec.amc.nl/), use of standards for healthcare providers quality assessment, analysis of quality data and linkage to performance-based financing, e.g. Medical Credit Fund loans program (http://www.medicalcreditfund.org/).
 

• 2006 – today: Professor and Principal Investigator, Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development (AIGHD), Department of Global Health, Academic Medical Center (AMC), University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Operational research on sustainable and affordable biomedical diagnostics, research on HIV drug resistance in Africa, health systems research, collaborations with independent academic sites and scientists in multiple African countries, USA, Europe.

• 2014 - today: Director Research of the PharmAccess Group. Responsible for PharmAccess research agenda in coordination with AIGHD and Joep Lange Institute.

 

Education
2006 Professor in Sustainable Health Care Delivery – Diagnostics in Africa, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
1991 PhD Medicine/Molecular Immunology, State University Leiden, The Netherlands
1986 MSc Molecular Biology (cum laude), State University Leiden, The Netherlands
1983 MSc Theatre Science, State University Leiden, The Netherlands
1982 BSc Biology, State University Leiden, The Netherlands

 

Research programmes

Multi-disciplinary public health research in Africa

Summary of research over last five years

The research of Tobias Rinke de Wit can be characterised as multi-disciplinary, effectively combining socio-economic and bio-medical work, always directed towards building more sustainable healthcare models towards public health in Africa. Tobias is molecular biologist by training and as such he performs research in the area of affordable laboratory diagnostics for resource-poor applications. In this area, he worked on affordable tests for HIV viral load, HIV drug resistance monitoring and surveillance, connected diagnostics, HIV testing on saliva. Tobias has a firm history and background in general HIV research: in Ethiopia he performed prospective cohort studies on the natural history of HIV infection with an emphasis on immunology and virology. At PharmAccess, Tobias performed operational research around HIV treatment programs in Africa (workplace HIV/AIDS programs, pharma-industry supported ART access programs, HIV insurance programs, etc.). Over the past 10 years Tobias has been leading research in the area of HIV drug resistance: monitoring of acquired HIV drug resistance, surveillance of transmitted drug resistance, drug resistance modelling studies, pediatric drug resistance work, etc. In 2013 over 25% of all WHO data on HIV drug resistance in Africa derived from Tobias' projects. Tobias supports 10 PhD students (Dutch, African) in these areas. Tobias also performs operational research in the areas of private sector workplace programs for HIV, wellness surveys and basic primary healthcare delivery to private customers. In Namibia Tobias supervised until recently operational and impact evaluation research on mobile HIV testing at workplaces, introduction of affordable healthcare insurances, mobile wellness screening and primary healthcare delivery. Tobias performs research in the area of quality of healthcare delivery through analysis of healthcare facility assessment data as provided by the PharmAccess SafeCare program. Tobias was principal investigator on a project in Ghana that evaluated the client-experience of healthcare services by the Ghana National Health Insurance Scheme and its network of facilities. Recently, Tobias embarked on an regional HIV test & treat project in Tanzania as scientific coordinator of impact evaluation in socio-economic and bio-medical/clinical dsiciplines.

 

Outline of plans for research in the next five years

Tobias’ HIV drug resistance research lines have been continued and expanded. Recently Tobias secured funding for the first nationwide survey on pediatric HIV drug resistance in Nigeria. This year (2017) Tobias will deliver 6 PhD students in the area of HIV drug resistance, public private partnerships in HIV care and provider interventions within the Ghanaian National Health Insurance Scheme. A new research line was started by Tobias in the area of connected diagnostics: linking point-of-care diagnostic testing for important infectious diseases in Africa (malaria, brucella, typhoid, HIV, etc.) to mobile phone-supported payment systems. Tobias coordinates a 800,000 euro/year operational research (2016-2022) and impact evaluation program on PharmAccess interventions in Africa. Projects include: poverty mapping, connected diagnostics, the business of quality healthcare, geographic mapping of healthcare provision determinants, digital solutions for healthcare exchanges, medical supply chain and quality research, user satisfaction analyses, etc. 
 

Secured grants

2016 Gilead (€ 3,987,680 for 5 years). HIV Test&Treat program in Shinyanga, Tanzania, operational research.
2015 Achmea Foundation (€ 299,499). Connected Diagnostics roof of principle project on brucellosis, malaria and typhoid in Samburu, Kenya
2014 Heineken International (€ 147,808) for two papers on 15 years of Heineken – PharmAccess access to ART program (tribute to Prof Joep Lange).
2013 Second price Amsterdam Municipality contest for an Applied Technology Institute in Amsterdam (€ 7 million for 5 years)
2013 WHO consultancy assignment for scientific support to HIVResNet with respect to HIV drug resistance in resource-poor settings ($69,035, 1 year)
2013 WHO Agreement for Performance of Work at JCRC, Uganda ($ 194,212; 6 months)
2013 European Union support to HIVDR program Southern Africa, via SATuRN grant (€ 110,757; 1 year)
2012 Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). NACCAP. Affordable resistance test for Africa, phase II (€ 1,473,862; 3 years, principal investigator; 3 years)
2012 Embassy of Kingdom of the Netherlands Regional AIDS Program. HIV drug resistance monitoring and evaluation in Southern Africa (€1,191,245; principal investigator; 3 years)
2012 Jura Foundation. HIV drug resistance research in Uganda (€125,000, principal investigator; 1 year).
2011 AIDS Fonds, the Netherlands. Operational Research grant for affordable HIV viral load test + P24 evaluation Zimbabwe (€ 199,485; principal investigator; 1 year).
2011 Heineken Africa Fund. Continued HIV drug resistance monitoring in adults and children in Lagos, Nigeria (€333,000, principal investigator; 3 years).
2010 NACCAP. Managerial capacity grant JCRC (€ 75,000, principal investigator; 1 year)
2010 CORDAID. Support budget for health insurance research in Ghana (€ 35,000, principal investigator; 1 year)
2010 NWO-WOTRO. Towards a client-oriented health insurance system in Ghana. Research Grant (€ 849,568; principal investigator; 4 years).
2009 AIDS Fonds, the Netherlands. Operational Research grant for Affordable Diagnostics in Africa (€ 199,856; principal investigator; 1 year).
2009 EDCTP fellowship. Evaluating Antiretroviral Drug Resistance in HIV Infected Children in Africa (€ 199,100; co-applicant; 2 years)
2008 Schokland Fonds. Intellectual property rights Africa Case Study ARTA (€ 420,000, co-investigator; 2 years).
2007 AIDS Fonds, the Netherlands. Operational Research grant for Affordable Diagnostics in Africa (€ 130,318; principal investigator; 1 year).
2007 Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). NACCAP grant: affordable HIV drug resistance test for Africa (€ 2,969,402; principal investigator; 3 years).
2006 Netherlands Ministry of Development Cooperation. The socio-economic and bio-medical impact of introduction of affordable health insurances (including AIDS treatment) in Africa (€ 1,565,387; co-applicant; 3 years).
2006 Netherlands Ministry of Development Cooperation. Creating an international network on HIV drug resistance in Africa (€ 10,244,462; principal investigator; 6 years)
2004 Heineken International. Access to HAART program for 6 operations in Africa; PhD program Dr van der Borght (€ 500,000; 5 years, promotor).
2003 Dutch AIDS Fonds: Determination of HIV prevalence among Heineken employees and dependents in Rwanda ($ 35,440; principal investigator; 1 year).

Faculty
Prof. dr. T.F. Rinke de Wit PhD (PharmAccess Foundation, Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development)

Postdocs
Dr. G.B. Gomez Guillen (London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine)
Dr. R.L. Hamers
Dr. S.M. Hermans MSc PhD
P.L.A. Ondoa MD PhD
Dr. K.C.E. Sigaloff MD PhD (Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development)

PhD Students
Drs. S.C. Inzaule (KEMRI (Kenya))
C. Kityo Mutuluuza
S. Kroeze MSc
N.E. Okere
Drs. M. Mugo (KEMRI Wellcome Trust Research Program)

Others
Dr. N.G. Pakker

Other research related activities
  • Board of directors / Trustees / Supervisory board, Other
  • Board of directors / Trustees / Supervisory board, PharmAccess Foundation (performance-based financing of quality healthcare in resource-poor settings)
  • Membership of advisory board / Consultant, WHO (World Health Organization)