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Professor Jane Hirst

Professor Jane Hirst

Jane Hirst

Visiting Professor in Global Women's Health

  • Chair of Global Women's Health, Imperial College London
  • Director of Women's Health, The George Institute for Global Health
  • Honorary Consultant Obstetrician OUH NHS Foundation Trust

Prof Jane Hirst is an academic obstetrician at The George Institute for Global Health, Imperial College London and a Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford. Her research focuses on global perinatal health, specifically gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), preeclampsia, preterm birth, stillbirth, anaemia, sepsis and preventing the lifelong effects of these pregnancy complications. 

She has projects in  India, Viet Nam, China, Nigeria, The Gambia, Rwanda, Gaza, Tanzania, and the UK. In 2020 she was awarded a UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship to improve antenatal and postpartum care for women in rural India, with a focus on using pregnancy as an opportunity to improve women's lifelong health. In collaboration with the George Institute for Global Health, her team have adapted the SMART Health platform, a method to improve the quality of guideline-based care delivered in rural and resource-poor communities (SMART Health Pregnancy). Jane leads a large cluster randomised trial testing the effectiveness of this approach in three rural districts in India, involving 3400 pregnant women from 60 villages, due to complete in 2025.

SMARThealth Pregnancy has led to other novel projects led by the Hirst group. Dr Nicole Votruba is developing an innovative intervention to support women's perinatal mental health in rural India (MRC funded project PRAMH). DPhil students Ankita Sharma and Yasmina Al Ghadban are leading the development of a large language model Chatbot to support community health workers in India (Gates Foundation funding).

Jane is the PI for the Heat in Pregnancy-India project, a five-year, Wellcome Trust project exploring the effects of extreme heat on pregnancy physiology and outcomes across India. She leads a large consortium with partners from the Translational Health Sciences and Technology Institute, India; IIT Delhi; Sri Ramachandra Institute of Medical Sciences; The George Institute for Global Health India; Pondicherry Institute of Medical Sciences, Chhatisgarh Institute of Medical Sciences, Care Mother Mumbai,  St Georges University London and Imperial College London.

She is a NICE Diabetes Guideline Development group member and led the Nuffield Department of Women’s & Reproductive Health's successful Athena SWAN Silver award in 2019. She is an Associate Fellow at Green Templeton College and works as a Consultant Obstetrician in the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

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