April Bell, PhD, MPH

Title(s)Assistant Professor, Family Community Medicine
SchoolSchool of Medicine
Address2540 23rd Street, #5701
San Francisco CA 94110
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    Dr. Bell is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine (FCM) in the School of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF). Prior to joining FCM, she was a postdoctoral scholar with the Preterm Birth Initiative at UCSF.

    She obtained her PhD in Epidemiology from the Indiana University School of Public Health at Bloomington. She received her MPH with a dual concentration in Epidemiology and Social & Behavioral Sciences from the Indiana University School of Medicine and her BA in Human Biology from Stanford University. Dr. Bell's research is focused on decreasing reproductive health inequities among women and youth by addressing the impacts of societal and structural biases on adverse birth outcomes, sexually transmitted infections, HIV acquisition, abortion access, and unintended pregnancy. Having worked extensively in both the US and across sub-Saharan Africa, she is interested in using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies, including digital storytelling, to bridge the expanse between US and African settings.

    She has conducted research and evaluated programs in domestic and international settings during her 10 years at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 5 years at AMPATH, one of the largest and most successful HIV treatment programs in sub-Saharan Africa; and 18 months in Ghana as a Fogarty Research Fellow conducting maternal/child health and reproductive/sexual health research under the auspices of the University of Michigan. Since 2016, she has focused her work in the United States. She is a Society for Family Planning Emerging Leader and was awarded a research grant to fund her pilot project aimed at assessing the impact of digital storytelling on abortion stigma.

    Dr. Bell is Certified in Public Health and a Certified Clinical Research Professional. She is the Membership Chair for the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section of the American Public Health Association. Other professional affiliations include the Society of Family Planning, Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health, Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine, and Society for Epidemiologic Research.
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    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help. to make corrections and additions.
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    Altmetrics Details PMC Citations indicate the number of times the publication was cited by articles in PubMed Central, and the Altmetric score represents citations in news articles and social media. (Note that publications are often cited in additional ways that are not shown here.) Fields are based on how the National Library of Medicine (NLM) classifies the publication's journal and might not represent the specific topic of the publication. Translation tags are based on the publication type and the MeSH terms NLM assigns to the publication. Some publications (especially newer ones and publications not in PubMed) might not yet be assigned Field or Translation tags.) Click a Field or Translation tag to filter the publications.
    1. Understanding how COVID-19 affected black pregnant women early in the pandemic: A cross-sectional survey. Midwifery. 2024 Mar; 130:103915. Bell AJ, Afulani P, Compton S, Barringer S, Kaselitz E, Muzik M, Moyer CA. PMID: 38184973.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
    2. Elevating Women's Voices: The Illinois Maternal Health Digital Storytelling Project. Health Promot Pract. 2023 Apr 10; 15248399231166422. Holicky A, Glassgow AE, Myers A, Bell AJ. PMID: 37038618.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    
    3. Police brutality and unmet need for mental health care. Health Serv Res. 2021 12; 56(6):1104-1113. Alang S, Rogers TB, Williamson LD, Green C, Bell AJ. PMID: 34350595; PMCID: PMC8586484.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    4. The association of COVID-19 infection in pregnancy with preterm birth: A retrospective cohort study in California. Lancet Reg Health Am. 2021 Oct; 2:100027. Karasek D, Baer RJ, McLemore MR, Bell AJ, Blebu BE, Casey JA, Coleman-Phox K, Costello JM, Felder JN, Flowers E, Fuchs JD, Gomez AM, Karvonen K, Kuppermann M, Liang L, McKenzie-Sampson S, McCulloch CE, Oltman SP, Pantell MS, Piao X, Prather AA, Schmidt RJ, Scott KA, Spellen S, Stookey JD, Tesfalul M, Rand L, Jelliffe-Pawlowski LL. PMID: 34642685; PMCID: PMC8497178.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 42  
    5. 'Asram is really killing us here': attribution for pregnancy losses and newborn mortality in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. J Biosoc Sci. 2021 07; 53(4):497-507. Bakari A, Bell AJ, Oppong S, Woodford J, Kaselitz E, Moyer CA. PMID: 32578530.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    6. Neonatal near-misses in Ghana: a prospective, observational, multi-center study. BMC Pediatr. 2019 12 23; 19(1):509. Bakari A, Bell AJ, Oppong SA, Bockarie Y, Wobil P, Plange-Rhule G, Goka BQ, Engmann CM, Adanu RM, Moyer CA. PMID: 31870340; PMCID: PMC6927122.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 9     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    7. Is abortion justified to save the life or health of a woman? Evidence of public opinion from Accra, Ghana. Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2019 Oct; 147(1):115-119. Rominski SD, Bell AJ, Yawson AE, Nakua EK, Moyer CA. PMID: 31314906.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    8. 'This sickness is not hospital sickness': a qualitative study of the evil eye as a source of neonatal illness in Ghana. J Biosoc Sci. 2020 03; 52(2):159-167. Bell AJ, Arku Z, Bakari A, Oppong SA, Youngblood J, Adanu RM, Moyer CA. PMID: 31203826; PMCID: PMC6917980.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 2     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    9. "We call them miracle babies": How health care providers understand neonatal near-misses at three teaching hospitals in Ghana. PLoS One. 2018; 13(5):e0198169. Bell AJ, Wynn LV, Bakari A, Oppong SA, Youngblood J, Arku Z, Bockarie Y, Adu J, Wobil P, Plange-Rhule G, Goka B, Adanu RM, Moyer CA. PMID: 29847603; PMCID: PMC5976150.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    10. Predictors of stillbirths and neonatal deaths in rural western Uganda. Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2016 Aug; 134(2):190-3. Moyer CA, Kolars CK, Oppong SA, Bakari A, Bell A, Busingye P. PMID: 27177508.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 6     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    11. "These are good problems to have…": establishing a collaborative research partnership in East Africa. J Gen Intern Med. 2013 Sep; 28 Suppl 3:S625-38. Tierney WM, Nyandiko WN, Siika AM, Wools-Kaloustian K, Sidle JE, Kiplagat J, Bell A, Inui TS. PMID: 23797916; PMCID: PMC3744278.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 19     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    12. Experience implementing electronic health records in the antenatal clinic of a teaching and referral hospital in Kenya. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2013; 192:1126. Chemwolo B, Caloia D, Wools-Kaloustian K, Sidle J, Spitzer RF, Were M, Bell A, Tierney WM. PMID: 23920900.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 2     Fields:    
    13. Short-Term Rationing of Combination Antiretroviral Therapy: Impact on Morbidity, Mortality, and Loss to Follow-Up in a Large HIV Treatment Program in Western Kenya. AIDS Res Treat. 2012; 2012:814564. Bell AJ, Wools-Kaloustian K, Kimaiyo S, Liu H, Katschke A, Shen C, Simiyu G, Musick BS, Sidle JE, Siika A, Braitstein P. PMID: 22690332; PMCID: PMC3368312.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1  
    14. Determinants of condom use among female sex workers in Kenya: a case-crossover analysis. J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2011 May; 20(5):733-8. Gallo MF, Warner L, Bell AJ, Bukusi EA, Sharma A, Njoroge B, Ngugi E, Jamieson DJ, Eschenbach DA. PMID: 21438697.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 8     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    15. Assessment of changes in condom use among female sex workers in a prospective cohort study introducing diaphragm use for disease prevention. Am J Epidemiol. 2010 Sep 01; 172(5):606-12. Gallo MF, Warner L, Bell AJ, Wiener J, Eschenbach DA, Bukusi EA, Sharma A, Njoroge B, Ngugi E, Jamieson DJ. PMID: 20660519.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    16. Diaphragm for STI and HIV prevention: is it a safe method for women at high risk? Sex Transm Dis. 2010 Jun; 37(6):382-5. Njoroge B, Gallo MF, Sharma A, Bukusi EA, Nguti R, Bell AJ, Jamieson DJ, Williams D, Eschenbach DA. PMID: 20473244.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    17. Intravaginal practices among female sex workers in Kibera, Kenya. Sex Transm Infect. 2010 Aug; 86(4):318-22. Gallo MF, Sharma A, Bukusi EA, Njoroge B, Nguti R, Jamieson DJ, Bell AJ, Eschenbach DA. PMID: 20410077.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 8     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
    18. Adherence to diaphragm use for infection prevention: a prospective study of female sex workers in Kenya. Infect Dis Obstet Gynecol. 2009; 2009:420196. Bukusi EA, Gallo MF, Sharma A, Njoroge B, Jamieson DJ, Nguti R, Bell AJ, Eschenbach DA. PMID: 20224648; PMCID: PMC2833308.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:HumansPHPublic Health
    19. Experience implementing electronic health records in three East African countries. Stud Health Technol Inform. 2010; 160(Pt 1):371-5. Tierney WM, Achieng M, Baker E, Bell A, Biondich P, Braitstein P, Kayiwa D, Kimaiyo S, Mamlin B, McKown B, Musinguzi N, Nyandiko W, Rotich J, Sidle J, Siika A, Were M, Wolfe B, Wools-Kaloustian K, Yeung A, Yiannoutsos C, Tanzania-Uganda Openmrs Consortium. PMID: 20841711.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 26     Fields:    
    20. Promoting continuous use as a strategy for achieving adherence in a trial of the diaphragm with candidate microbicide. AIDS Educ Prev. 2009 Dec; 21(6):512-25. Penman-Aguilar A, Swezey T, Turner AN, Bell AJ, Ramiandrisoa FN, Legardy-Williams J, Randrianasolo B, Van Damme K, Dulyx J, Behets F, Jamieson DJ. PMID: 20030496.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 2     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    21. Predictors of adherent use of diaphragms and microbicide gel in a four-arm, randomized pilot study among female sex workers in Madagascar. Sex Transm Dis. 2009 Apr; 36(4):249-57. Turner AN, Van Damme K, Jamieson DJ, Khan MR, Pettifor AE, Swezey TA, Bell AJ, Newman DR, Penman-Aguilar A, Raharinivo MS, Randrianasolo B, Ramiandrisoa FN, Behets FM, Mad STI Prevention Group. PMID: 19265745; PMCID: PMC5824631.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 7     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    22. Vaginal microbicide and diaphragm use for sexually transmitted infection prevention: a randomized acceptability and feasibility study among high-risk women in Madagascar. Sex Transm Dis. 2008 Sep; 35(9):818-26. Behets FM, Turner AN, Van Damme K, Rabenja NL, Ravelomanana N, Swezey TA, Bell AJ, Newman DR, Williams DL, Jamieson DJ, Mad STI Prevention Group. PMID: 18562985; PMCID: PMC5826650.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 12     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    23. Barriers to the use of modern contraceptives and implications for woman-controlled prevention of sexually transmitted infections in Madagascar. J Biosoc Sci. 2008 Nov; 40(6):879-93. Randrianasolo B, Swezey T, Van Damme K, Khan MR, Ravelomanana N, Lovaniaina Rabenja N, Raharinivo M, Bell AJ, Jamieson D, MAD STI Prevention Group, Behets F. PMID: 18198005; PMCID: PMC3390975.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 9     Fields:    Translation:Humans
    24. Phase I safety trial of two vaginal microbicide gels (Acidform or BufferGel) used with a diaphragm compared to KY jelly used with a diaphragm. Sex Transm Dis. 2007 Dec; 34(12):977-84. Williams DL, Newman DR, Ballagh SA, Creinin MD, Barnhart K, Weiner DH, Bell AJ, Jamieson DJ. PMID: 18080349.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 11     Fields:    Translation:HumansCTClinical Trials
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