Wendy P O'Meara, PhD

Associate Professor in Medicine
Associate Research Professor of Global Health
Campus mail Eldoret Kenya, Box 90519, Durham, NC 27710
Phone (919) 681-7711
Email address wendy.omeara@duke.edu

Dr. O'Meara has been working in the field of malaria diagnosis, treatment, and drug resistance since 2004. She is an Associate Professor at Duke University Medical School in the Division of Infectious Diseases, visiting professor at Moi University, and the Co-Field Director of Research for AMPATH.  She has been based full-time in Kenya since 2007.

Dr. O’Meara’s team is interested in improving rational drug use for suspected malaria fevers through expanding the use of diagnostic tools in the community and in health facilities.  As many as 90% of fevers that seek treatment in the formal sector receive antimalarials, and it is estimated that only 20% of those buying antimalarials over-the-counter in the retail sector actually have malaria.  Such overuse poses a significant threat to the continued efficacy of first-line antimalarials. Dr. O’Meara has conducted several randomized controlled trials in western Kenya to test interventions designed to improve the use of information from malaria diagnostic testing in order to target antimalarials to those with confirmed infection. In 2005, she helped to establish the Malaria Diagnostic Centre of Excellence in Kisumu, Kenya.

Recently, she concluded a case-controlled study with colleagues at Moi University that identified the major determinants of insecticide treated bednet failure in western Kenya. Among other results, the study showed that asymptomatically infected household members may be a risk factor for children living in the same household. Current work is extending this observation by leveraging variability in key parasite genes to describe the spatial mixing of malaria infections and track generations of infections from humans to mosquitoes (collaboration with Steve Taylor’s lab).

Dr. O’Meara has experience in marrying innovative spatial techniques with epidemiologic outcomes.  Recent work includes an analysis of health systems factors that contribute to early childhood mortality in sub-Saharan Africa.

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003

Publications

Lumsden, Rebecca H., Constantine Akwanalo, Stella Chepkwony, Anne Kithei, Vincent Omollo, Thomas L. Holland, Gerald S. Bloomfield, and Wendy P. O’Meara. “Clinical and geographic patterns of rheumatic heart disease in outpatients attending cardiology clinic in western Kenya..” Int J Cardiol 223 (November 15, 2016): 228–35. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijcard.2016.08.069.

PMID
27541662
Full Text

Mangeni, Judith Nekesa, Diana Menya, Andrew Obala, Alyssa Platt, and Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara. “Development and validation of a rapid assessment tool for malaria prevention..” Malar J 15, no. 1 (November 8, 2016). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12936-016-1575-0.

PMID
27825350
Full Text

Maina, Alice N., Christina M. Farris, Antony Odhiambo, Ju Jiang, Jeremiah Laktabai, Janice Armstrong, Thomas Holland, Allen L. Richards, and Wendy P. O’Meara. “Q Fever, Scrub Typhus, and Rickettsial Diseases in Children, Kenya, 2011-2012..” Emerg Infect Dis 22, no. 5 (May 2016): 883–86. https://doi.org/10.3201/eid2205.150953.

PMID
27088502
Full Text

Lumsden, Rebecca, Constantine Akwanalo, Wendy P. O’Meara, and Gerald S. Bloomfield. “Geographic and Demographic Patterns of Rheumatic Heart Disease in Western Kenya.” In Circulation, Vol. 133. LIPPINCOTT WILLIAMS & WILKINS, 2016.

Scholars@Duke

Prudhomme O’Meara, Wendy, Manoj Mohanan, Jeremiah Laktabai, Adriane Lesser, Alyssa Platt, Elisa Maffioli, Elizabeth L. Turner, and Diana Menya. “Assessing the independent and combined effects of subsidies for antimalarials and rapid diagnostic testing on fever management decisions in the retail sector: results from a factorial randomised trial in western Kenya..” Bmj Glob Health 1, no. 2 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjgh-2016-000101.

PMID
28588946
Full Text

Menya, Diana, Alyssa Platt, Imran Manji, Edna Sang, Rebeccah Wafula, Jing Ren, Olympia Cheruiyot, Janice Armstrong, Brian Neelon, and Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara. “Using pay for performance incentives (P4P) to improve management of suspected malaria fevers in rural Kenya: a cluster randomized controlled trial..” Bmc Med 13 (October 16, 2015). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12916-015-0497-y.

PMID
26472130
Full Text

O’Meara, Wendy Prudhomme, Jeremiah Laktabai, Manoj Mohanan, Elizabeth Turner, Elisa Maffioli, Alyssa Platt, Adriane Lesser, and Diana Menya. “TARGETING ANTIMALARIAL SUBSIDIES TO CONFIRMED CASES IN THE RETAIL SECTOR - TESTING A DIAGNOSIS-DEPENDENT VOUCHER SCHEME IN WESTERN KENYA.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 93:361–361. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2015.

Scholars@Duke

O’Meara, Wendy Prudhomme, Judith Mangeni, Alyssa Platt, Lucy Abel, Jane Namae, and Andrew Obala. “WHAT IS THREATENING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF ITNS? A COMPARISON OF PHYSICAL, BEHAVIORAL, ENTOMOLOGICAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 93:116–116. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2015.

Scholars@Duke

Platt, Alyssa, Wendy Prudhomme O’Meara, Charles MacIntyre, Daniel Aswa, and Andrew Obala. “SPATIO-TEMPORAL ANALYSIS OF MALARIA FEVERS IN A LARGE OPEN COHORT IN WESTERN KENYA; IMPLICATIONS FOR TARGETING 'HOTSPOTS'.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 93:269–269. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2015.

Scholars@Duke

Rono, Winnie C., Wendy P. O’Meara, and Samson K. Ndege. “USE OF ANTIBIOTICS AND ANTIMALARIALS IN THE MANAGEMENT OF FEBRILE ILLNESSES IN CHILDREN IN PUBLIC HEALTH FACILITIES IN WESTERN KENYA.” In American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 93:131–131. AMER SOC TROP MED & HYGIENE, 2015.

Scholars@Duke

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