The Department partners with various academic institutions, both domestic and international, to advance research in Jaffna and the Northern Province.

Current research activities

  • “Global health research on atrial fibrillation management,” (2018 – ) in partnership with the University of Birmingham, funded by National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), UK. Investigators: Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran (DCFM), Dr. S. Kumaran (DCFM), Dr. M. Guruparan (Teaching Hospital Jaffna), and Dr. Ajini Arasalingam (Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine-Jaffna).
  • “Health, psychological distress and level of satisfaction due to interactions with youth, among the elders in Jaffna district,” (2018 – ) in partnership with the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and Duke University, funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA.Investigators: Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran (DCFM), Dr. P.A.D Coonghe (DCFM), Prof. Truls Ostbye (Duke Global Health Institute), Prof.  Joanna Maselko (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Prof. Kathryn Law Hale (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill).
  • “A study on ragging violence, health consequences and help seeking behavior among students of the University of Jaffna, Sri  Lanka,”- (2018-) Investigators:  Dr. Ayanthi Wickramasinghe (Uppsala University, Sweden ), Prof. Pia Axemo (Uppsala  University, Sweden ), Prof. Birgitta Essen (Uppsala  University, Sweden), Dr. Ramya Kumar (DCFM), and Dr.R.Surenthirakumaran (DCFM)
  • “Nutritional status and its influence on cognitive performance and mental health of school going adolescents of Jaffna district,” (2016- ) funded by University of Jaffna Research Grant.Investigators: Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran, Dr. P.A.D. Coonghe, Dr. R. Malavan, Dr. S. Kumaran, and Dr. N. Sivarajah.
  •  “Integrating mental health into primary care for post-conflict populations in Northern Sri Lanka [COM-GAP],”   (2016 – ) funded by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], Atlanta, USA.Investigators: Dr. C. Siriwardhana (Anglia Ruskin University), Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran, Prof. D. Somasundaram (Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Jaffna), and Dr. A. Adikari (Institute for Research and Development, Colombo)
  • “The knowledge attitude and practice related to HIV and its influencing factors among public health midwives in Jaffna district.” (2016 – )Investigators: Dr. M. Thakshagini (MD trainee, Post-graduate Institute of Medicine, University of Colombo), Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran
  • “Validation of  Depression, Anxiety, Stress Scale (DASS 21) among Jaffna Tamil population.” (2015- ) Investigators: Dr. S. Kumaran, Prof. D. Somasundaram (Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Jaffna), Dr. S. Madona Hashanthy (Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Jaffna), Dr. S. Sivakajani (Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Jaffna)

Partnerships and collaborations

  • The Department collaborates/has collaborated with several international and local agencies and institutions.
  • University of Birmingham, UK, MOU on Education, Research and Academic Development (2018-) 
  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University, USA, MOU on Education, Research and Academic Development (2018 -)
  • Uppsala University, Sweden, MOU on Education, Research and Academic Development (2018-)
  • Manchester Academic Health Sciences Centre, University of Manchester, United Kingdom, MOU on education, research and academic development (2016- )
  • Post-graduate Medical Institute, Anglia Ruskin University, United Kingdom, MOU on education, research and academic development (2015- )
  • Asian Pacific Academic Consortium for Public Health APACPH (2011- )
  • South-East Asia Public Health Education Institutions Network SEAPHIEN
  • LANKA Public Health Education Institutes Network (LANKAPHEIN), Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo (2009 –)
  • Office of the Provincial Director of Health Services, Northern Province, Disability Survey (2015- )
  • World Health Organization Country Office for Sri Lanka, Colombo, funding of a community-based socio-demographic and health survey in the Jaffna University Project Area (2013-2014)

Post-graduate trainee research projects (completed)

The Department functions as a Training Centre for MD trainees in Community Medicine in partnership with the Post-Graduate Institute of Medicine, University of Colombo. The following research projects have been undertaken in partial fulfillment of the MD in Community Medicine.

  • “Mental health of adolescent school children in Jaffna district and some of their psychological correlates,” Dr. P. Lukumar (2006)
  • “Current status of cancer in Jaffna: completeness of registration and prevalence of risk factors and awareness of preventive services,” Dr. R. Surenthirakumaran (2011)
  • “Inequalities in nutrition in Jaffna: associated factors and effectiveness of interventions,” Dr. S. Sivaganesh (2011)
  • “Prevalence of type II diabetes mellitus and its risk factors among adults and use of preventive care practices by known diabetics in the Jaffna District,” Dr. N. Rajeshkannan (2011)
  • “ Prevalence of mild cognitive impairment and its selected correlates among elders in Jaffna district,” P. A. D. Coonghe , (2015)
  • “Effectiveness of a planned health educational intervention on metered dose inhalation technique among adult asthmatic or chronic obstructive disease patients in Chest Clinic, Jaffna district,” S. Kumaran (2016)

Undergraduate research projects

The Community Medicine Curriculum requires all medical students to undertake a research project during the third and fourth year of the undergraduate programme. The students are expected to select a health problem/topic of interest, conceptualize their research questions, and design an appropriate methodology, under the guidance of two supervisors. The project is carried out by groups of 2-3 students, and an interdisciplinary approach to research is encouraged. The following undergraduate research projects have been completed to date.

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