Past projects

SCIP-APP: Safer Conception Intervention for Partners project Android tablet application

A collaboration between the UW Dept. of Human Centered Design & Engineering, Dept. of Global Health, and the Partners in Health Research & Development.

Investigators: Asst. Prof. Renee Heffron,  Prof. Beth Kolko, Dr. Kenneth Ngure, Dr. Njambi Njuguna, Prof. Jared Baeten, Prof. Connie Celum, Dr. Nelly Mugo & Asst. Prof. Jennifer Unger

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HIV-serodiscordant couples, or couples in which one partner has HIV and one does not, are at high risk of HIV transmission when trying to conceive a child. Safer conception strategies exist, but couples and their health care providers experience challenges in sharing, understanding, and taking action based on various fertility and medication adherence indicators.

As part of a pilot mHealth intervention, I led a team of fellow UW students in designing and developing SCIP-APP, a clinic-based tablet application to support HIV-serodiscordant partners and their clinical team in practicing safer conception strategies. SCIP-APP is for use during comprehensive clinic-based safer conception counseling sessions and draws on personalized fertility and medication adherence data. It has the potential to improve couples’ preparation for timed condomless sex; improve clinician-couple communication; and minimize the risk of HIV-1 transmission when trying to have a child with its interactive calendar and viral load tracking.

This pilot with 80 couples is currently under way in Thika, Kenya.

TransPHorm: Machine translation in public health

In the TransPHorm project, I worked with bilingual health professionals at the Washington State Department of Health, University of Washington, Public Health – Seattle & King County, and local health departments to advance the understanding of current translation processes, and to examine how novel machine translation technologies can be incorporated into public health practice.

Investigators: Assoc. Prof. Anne M. Turner & Research Assoc. Prof. Katrin Kirchhoff


In the US, people with limited ability to read, speak and write English face considerable difficulty accessing health information and preventative care, as well as higher care costs and poorer outcomes. Local health departments are a key part of the care infrastructure for those with limited English proficiency. I helped design and evaluate a novel web-based collaborative translation system called PHAST that links bilingual public health workers to produce multilingual health materials for less time and expense than existing translation methods. Here’s a demo.

For other facets of the study, I have run comparative experiments on post-editing (the process of correcting machine translation), as well as tested existing mobile translation technologies Google Translate and QuickSpeak with emergency responders serving populations with limited English proficiency.