Evaluation of congenital infections, social and economics influences on child health: a population-based record linkage study


  • Dr Enny Cruz

    London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Project summary

Little is known about the long-term outcomes of children who are exposed to maternal infection before birth. There are reported cases of negative outcomes but the evidence on lifelong impairment is limited, controversial and available for few pathogens.

I will examine the health and social burden of four congenital infections – syphilis, toxoplasmosis, chikungunya and Zika – by linking data from Brazil for more than 100 million people with records of births, infectious disease, deaths and hospitalisations. I will also link these with social and economic data to estimate the role of social determinants. I will evaluate whether social protection policy can mitigate the risk of birth or childhood outcome of women exposed during pregnancy and determine the impact that congenital infections have on living conditions.

My findings will provide evidence for strategies to prevent congenital infections and identify the healthcare and social needs of those affected.