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Co-head of the Centre for Respiratory Disease and Meningitis, National Institute for Communicable Diseases

Cheryl Cohen is Associate Professor in epidemiology at the University of the Witwatersrand and co-head of the Centre for Respiratory Disease and Meningitis at the National Institute for Communicable Diseases in South Africa.

Through her work she aims to generate evidence to guide policy for the control of respiratory diseases. She led the establishment of a national surveillance programme for pneumonia in South Africa in 2009 and is the epidemiology lead for national surveillance for invasive bacterial infections causing pneumonia and meningitis.

She heads up a team with an active research agenda in the field of respiratory diseases with a focus on burden of disease, disease transmission and risk groups for severe illness, as well as assesment of the impact and effectiveness of interventions to reduce respiratory disease burden. She is a member of several national and international advisory committees and working groups mainly related to influenza and other respiratory diseases.


  • –present
    Associate Professor in epidemiology , University of the Witwatersrand