Portrait Josephine Agyeman-Duah

Josephine Agyeman-Duah

external scientific cooperation partner, NGN Research Center, Klinik für Neonatologie

Professional experience

I am an international health professional with extensive work experience in Africa and Europe. Currently I am pursuing a PhD (DPhil Women’s & Reproductive Health) at the University of Oxford where my research focuses on neurodevelopmental assessments at age 2 for all children born preterm. I am conducting part of my research work at the NGN Research Centre, Zurich and in collaboration with Professor Natalucci.

Prior to my PhD studies, I worked with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, Switzerland on its HIV program quality and efficiency, and with the Geneva Foundation for Medical Education and Research to promote sexual and reproductive health education. In Ghana, I led the regional implementation of Project Fives Alive! to reduce children under 5 mortality and improve maternal health in Ghana. I have collaborated with governments and worked across many other projects to promote child and maternal health and quality healthcare in developing country settings.

I hold an MSc. In International Health from Ruprecht-Karls University of Heidelberg, Germany and BSc. Biochemistry from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana.

Research focus areas

  • Early child development
  • Moderate to late Preterm
  • Neurodevelopmental assessments of infants
  • Women’s & reproductive health
  • Quality improvement in health care

Current Projects


  • Diabetes mellitus, maternal adiposity, and insulin-dependent gestational diabetes are associated with Covid-19 in pregnancy: The INTERCOVID Study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34942154/
  • Agyeman-Duah J, Kennedy S, O’Brien F and Natalucci G. Interventions to improve neurodevelopmental outcomes of children born moderate to late preterm: a systematic review protocol [version 2; peer review: 2 approved]. Gates Open Res 2021, 5:78 (https://doi.org/10.12688/gatesopenres.13246.2)
  • Agyeman-Duah J, Appiah A, Asibey J, et al. 316 Before scaling-up, speak with the stakeholders: lessons from a preterm project. BMJ Paediatrics Open 2021;5:doi: 10.1136/bmjpo-2021-RCPCH.175
  • Agyeman-Duah, J., Theurer, A., Munthali, C., Alide, N. and Neuhann, F. (2014), Understanding the barriers to setting up a healthcare quality improvement process in resource-limited settings: a situational analysis at the Medical Department of Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe, Malawi. BMC Health Services Research 2014, 14:1 doi: 10.1186/1472-6963-14-1
  • Villar J., Giuliani F., Barros F., et al. (2018), Monitoring the Postnatal Growth of Preterm Infants: A Paradigm Change. Pediatrics 141 (2); e20172467 DOI: 1542/peds.2017-2467
  • Kavita Singh, Ilene Speizer, Pierre M Barker, Josephine Nana Afrakoma Agyeman-Duah, et al., (2019), Evaluating the impact of a hospital scale-up phase of a quality improvement intervention in Ghana on mortality for children under five, International Journal for Quality in Health Care, mzz073, https://doi.org/10.1093/intqhc/mzz073


  • Villar J, Ariff S, Gunier RB, et al. Maternal and Neonatal Morbidity and Mortality Among Pregnant Women With and Without COVID-19 Infection: The INTERCOVID Multinational Cohort Study. JAMA 2021;175(8):817–826. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2021.1050
  • Papageorghiou AT, Deruelle P, Gunier RB, et al. Preeclampsia and COVID-19: results from the INTERCOVID prospective longitudinal study. Am J Obstet Gyneco 2021;225:289.e1-17 DOI: 1016/j.ajog.2021.05.014