The Fistula Care Plus (FC+) project is a five-year cooperative agreement funded by USAID and managed by EngenderHealth, a leading global women’s health organization that is working to ensure that every pregnancy is planned, every child is wanted, and every mother has the best chance at survival. EngenderHealth trains health care professionals and partners with governments and communities in more than 20 countries around the world.
FC+ Global Team
Dr. Isaac Achwal
Senior Medical Associate
Dr. Mark Barone
Senior Medical Associate
Lauren Bellhouse, MPH
Lauren Bellhouse is a Program Associate for the EngenderHealth-led Fistula Care Plus project. She is a public health professional with over 5 years of experience specializing in maternal and child health (MNCH), HIV/AIDS, integrated community case management (iCCM), and health systems strengthening. She has previously worked on such projects as MNCH/HIV service integration with UNICEF, training of MNCH and nutrition focused community health workers with Helen Keller International- Philippines, and establishing a community health worker training program for low-literacy traditional birth attendants in Sierra Leone with Concern Worldwide. Lauren received a BA from Emory University and her MPH from the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University.
Bethany Cole, MPH
Global Projects Manager
Bethany Cole is the Global Projects Manager on the USAID-funded Fistula Care Plus project based at EngenderHealth. Bethany has over thirteen years of experience in international health. Her previous work includes Program Manager for the Democratic Republic of Congo on the Fistula Care project and other management and technical support to a wide range of EngenderHealth’s family planning, maternal health, and HIV and AIDS projects in West and Central Africa. Following completion as a Peace Corps Volunteer in francophone Cameroon, she conducted monitoring and evaluation of food programs for unaccompanied minors in Rwanda, and worked in Sudan with the International Rescue Committee as a Field Manager in Nyala, South Darfur. Bethany holds a Master of Public Health from the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.
Karen Levin, MSW
Senior Associate for Monitoring and Evaluation
Karen Levin is a Senior Program Associate for Monitoring and Evaluation for the Fistula Care Plus (FC+) project. Karen has oversight of the collection, analysis and reporting of routine program data for FC+ with emphasis on the use of data for decision-making. She has led FC+’s efforts to design and implement a DHIS2 platform for data management. Karen has 18 years of evaluation and research experience in global women’s health. She graduated from Brown University with a degree in Anthropology and earned an MSW from the University of Stockholm’s School of Social Work. Karen telecommutes from her home in Baltimore, Maryland.
Dr. Lauri Romanzi
Lauri Romanzi is a physician and the the incoming Project Director for the Fistula Care Plus project. Dr. Romanzi is U.S. board certified gynecologist with sub-specialty board credentials in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS). She most recently served as Visiting Associate Professor of Female Pelvic Medicine to Yale University, engaged in fistula and FPMRS capacity building in Rwanda’s Human Resources for Health. This work included she supported quality assurance at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Kigali (CHUK), developing graduate and post-graduate programs in gynecology and urogynecology for the University of Rwanda College of Health Sciences and development of a central academic and regional district hospital outreach care program for genital fistula, pelvic organ prolapse, incontinence, and other congenital and acquired pelvic floor disorders. Dr. Romanzi’s international program management experience in Africa and Asia includes program development and management, national strategy for fistula eradication, protocol development and technical oversight, capacity building, database guidance, registry design, and grants acquisition. She has a vision for fully integrating fistula into maternal health services, as well as integrating fistula care into a broader scope of female pelvic medicine service models. She has worked with most of the multilateral and bilateral agencies, international NGOs, professional associations and academic institutions in this field in various capacities in countries including Afghanistan, Ghana, Nepal, Eritrea, Democratic Republic of Congo, Somaliland, Niger, Togo, Guinea and Senegal.
Vandana Tripathi, MPH, PhD
Deputy Project Director
Vandana Tripathi is the Fistula Care Plus Deputy Director. Before joining EngenderHealth, she worked on research studies related to maternal and newborn health, particularly quality of care measures in sub-Saharan Africa, through projects at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH) and the Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program. Prior to this, she served as the head of programs at HealthRight International, where she supervised the development, implementation, and evaluation of health and human rights projects, both globally and in the U.S. Vandana has also worked on reproductive health and HIV/AIDS programs at a variety of organizations, including Planned Parenthood of New York City and the Ford Foundation. Vandana received her PhD from JHSPH, her MPH in maternal and child health from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and her BA from Brown University.
Country Project Managers
Dr. SK Nazmul Huda
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Dr. Michel Mpunga
Moustapha Diallo (Guinea)
Dr. Habib Sadauki
Dr. Rose Mukisa
Learn more about the organizations that Fistula Care Plus partners:
|Dimagi, founded in 2002 and based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, is a private social enterprise that develops and delivers open and innovative technology to help underserved communities globally. With Fistula Care Plus, Dimagi will support data management and innovative mHealth interventions.|
|Direct Relief is a US-based NGO that partners with health care companies and business leaders to deliver donated medicines, medical supplies and equipment to people around the world affected by poverty, natural disasters, and civil unrest through transparent, reliable and cost-effective channels. Direct Relief will support Fistula Care Plus through the donation of medical supplies and by further developing the Global Fistula Map.|
|Fistula Foundation is a U.S.-based philanthropic foundation committed to raising awareness of and funding for fistula treatment, prevention and education programs worldwide. The Fistula Foundation will collaborate with Fistula Care Plus to increase access to fistula services, while at the same time promoting improved quality and monitoring of services.|
|The Maternal Health Task Force, based at the Harvard School of Public Health, facilitates outreach to the broader maternal health community through its extensive network to disseminate information to policymakers and advocates. The MHTF will collaborate with Fistula Care Plus on convening technical consultations and meetings.|
|Population Council, based in New York City, USA, conducts research to address critical health and development issues to allow couples to plan their families and chart their futures. Population Council is Fistula Care Plus’s implementing partner, and will develop and test innovative approaches to financing in-country programs.|
|TERREWODE, founded in 1999, is one of Uganda’s largest NGOs and is committed to improving the livelihood and status of women and girls in Uganda. TERREWODE has an extensive history supporting women with fistula in Uganda. With Fistula Care Plus, TERREWODE will support local outreach programs, collaborate on modeling best practices, and assist in capacity building.|