Michèle van Vugt
- Senior Fellow
Prof. Dr. Michele van Vugt has worked as an internist infectious diseases medical specialist and epidemiologist for many years now. Her research focuses on an integrated ‘community-centered’ approach to infectious tropical diseases particularly malaria, HIV and improving the quality of health care systems. She is involved in several projects in Africa and Asia which draw upon the help and efforts of the local population, health professionals, professionals from different disciplines, government, and the university to jointly work on the sustainable reduction of the number of tropical infections as well as on the disease’s prevention and resistance. She believes that for example, malaria elimination is achievable if different stakeholders would collaborate more in a multidisciplinary intersectoral way, including participative involvement of local communities. Future research work will be studying the burden of HIV in Suriname and implementation of professional family participation in Bangladesh, to support her ultimate goal: achieving control of tropical infectious diseases within an adequately functioning health system.
Beyond her research ambitions, she is currently a Professor of Internal Medicine, particularly in community-centered control of tropical infections, at the University of Amsterdam’s Faculty of Medicine (AMC-UvA), where she is also involved in multidisciplinary education within the themes of infectious diseases, tropical and travels medicine. She also teaches elective (post)graduate courses. Additionally, she is head of the Infectious Diseases Fellowship program within the AMC and also chair of the Dutch nationwide Infectious Diseases Fellowship program.
Before then, she was the Chief Medical Officer at PharmAccess and previously worked for many years as a researcher and doctor at clinics in refugee camps on the Thai-Myanmar border. During those years she achieved her PhD (1999) on Artemether-lumefantrine: an effective treatment regime for resistant P.falciparum malaria, which is still being used as first-line treatment in malaria-endemic countries today.