Professor Tazeen H. Jafar

Dr. Tazeen Jafar is a global health leader and expert with a focus on implementation research in hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and chronic kidney disease.

Dr Jafar is Professor of Health Services and Systems Research at Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Visiting Consultant Renal Medicine at Singapore General Hospital, Visiting Professor of Medicine, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan, Adjunct Professor of Nephrology, Tufts Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA, and Research Professor at Duke Global Health Institute, Durham, NC, USA.

Professor Jafar went to medical school at the Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan, followed by residency in Medicine-Pediatrics (and dual board certification) from University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, and fellowship in clinical nephrology (with board certification in Nephrology) and clinical research at Tufts Medical Center, Boston. She also obtained Masters in Public Health from Harvard University.

Professor Jafar has been leading innovative, impactful, research funded by Wellcome Trust, UK, NIH-Fogarty, MRC, DfID, and Singapore National Ministry of Health in chronic non-communicable diseases in global health settings for over 15 years. She is the chief principal investigator and executive director of the multi-country COBRA-BPS (Control of Blood Pressure and Risk Attenuation-Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka) trial  coordinated at Duke-NUS Medical School Singapore in 30 rural villages through the public sector in three South Asian countries The trial is funded by the UK-MRC/Wellcome Trust, DfID, and evaluated a community health workers-led multicomponent intervention on standardized hypertension care including door to door proactive BP screening and lifestyle coaching by trained government community health workers and referral to trained physicians at clinics with triage counter, and care coordinators vs usual care in rural low- and middle- income country (LMIC) setting. The findings from COBRA-BPS trial showing benefit of the intervention strategies on clinically meaningful reduction in BP and demonstrating validity of the approach in a variety of settings have been published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Professor Jafar is the recipient of the International Society of Hypertension 2012 Boehringer Ingelheim Developing World Award.

Funded by the Singapore National Medical Research Council, Prof Jafar designed the SingHypertension cluster RCT- first cluster randomized trial of its kind for improving management of hypertension in advanced public sector polyclinics in Singapore. She is also the co-theme PI on A*STAR funded “Diabetes Clinic of the Future” project in Singapore.

Professor Jafar mentors several junior faculty, post-docs, graduate students, and medical students in conducting meaningful research and data analyses (SingHealth polyclinic data, Singapore Renal Registry, Singapore Chinese Health Study), and has facilitated acquisition of training grants. She is a Council member of International Society of Hypertension Asia Pacific Region. Dr Jafar is also a practicing nephrologist.

Research Interests

Using rigorous implementation science methodologies and framework, designing, evaluating, and scaling-up models of care for prevention and management of vascular disease (including hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular, and kidney disease) that are of high significance to clinical practice and relevance to public health and policy.

Selected publications

  • Jafar TH, Gandhi M, de Silva HA, Jehan I, Naheed A, Finkelstein EA, Turner EL, Morisky D, Kasturiratne A, Khan AH, Clemens JD, Ebrahim S, Assam PN, Feng L; COBRA-BPS Study Group. A Community-Based Intervention for Managing Hypertension in Rural South Asia. N Engl J Med. 2020 Feb 20; 382(8): 717-726

  • Jafar TH, Samad Z, Bloomfield GS. Parallel community solutions for cardiovascular risk reduction. Lancet. 2019 Oct 5; 394(10205):1207-1208
  • Feng L, Khan AH, Jehan I, Allen J, Jafar TH. Albuminuria and kidney function as prognostic marker of left ventricular mass among South Asians with hypertension. Journal of the American Society of Hypertension JASH. 2017;11(12):811-22 e2.
  • Misra A, Tandon N, Ebrahim S, Sattar N, Alam D, Shrivastava U, Narayan KM, Jafar TH. Diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and chronic kidney disease in south asia: Current status and future directions. BMJ. 2017;357:j1420
  • Jafar TH, Haaland BA, Rahman A, Razzak JA, Bilger M, Naghavi M, Mokdad AH, Hyder AA. Non-communicable diseases and injuries in Pakistan: Strategic priorities. Lancet. 2013;381:2281-2290
Health Services & Systems Research Programme
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