Dr Manisha Nair (pictured second left, back row) has beaten stiff competition to win the science award at the 2019 Asian Women of Achievement Awards.
Founded twenty years ago, these prestigious awards recognise Asian women across the UK who are making a valuable and important contribution to British life. They also celebrate multicultural Britain and the contribution of diverse cultures and talents to UK society.
Manisha, who joined the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (NPEU) in April 2013, has adapted and developed successful methods from the UK to create the Maternal and perinatal Health Research collaboration (MaatHRI) a partnership between the University of Oxford and 15 government and private hospitals in four states in India.
Based in India, the country with the highest number of maternal deaths in the world, MaatHRI collects data on the prevalence of known and emerging life-threatening pregnancy complications and conducts large epidemiological studies to generate evidence to develop guidance and interventions to prevent deaths. The programme also provides hands-on research training opportunities for staff to improve the care of women treated in their hospitals.
Manisha supervises a research team of 19 project staff in India and is the lead supervisor for two research PhD students in Oxford. She also provides leadership and support for a new collaboration with researchers at Makerere University in Uganda working towards reducing deaths of babies born before the pregnancy reaches full term.
Professor Jenny Kurinczuk, Director, NPEU, said ‘Manisha is an exceptional and inspirational individual with outstanding technical knowledge and leadership skills. She has a focused and highly effective approach to global maternal health research with the goal of improving outcomes for mothers, babies and families.’