Contact Information:
121 South Main Street,
2nd Floor
Providence, RI 02912-G
Box G-S121-2
(401) 863-6790

Joseph Harwell, MD

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Joseph Harwell

Title: Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine and Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics
Department: Medicine and Pediatrics

+1 401 793 2928

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Overview | Research | Grants/Awards | Publications

HIV in women, prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, clinical care of HIV in resource-poor settings, sexually transmitted infections



Research Description

The world has seen a dramatic scale-up in the care and treatment of people living with HIV since 2002. The establishment of the President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the Global Fund for HIV, tuberculosis and malaria during this time created funding mechanisms that have financed the bulk of this scale-up. Since 2005 I have been working with the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) to help national governments develop and strengthen HIV treatment programs, largely financed through the Global Fund and PEPFAR, and to help them run more efficiently and effectively. My primary focus has been in Asia, where I serve as the Regional Clinical Officer for the CHAI country programs in Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and Vietnam. These programs have had particular emphases on children and rural areas, where the economic, structural, and technical barriers to care and treatment are considerable.


1998 "Outstanding Fellow of the Year" as selected by the internal medicine housestaff, Baystate Medical Center
2002 "Dean's Teaching Excellence Award," Brown Medical School Bio 282 Pathophysiology – Infectious Disease
2002 "Vision Award" New Visions for Newport County Inc. Jean E. Hicks Community Health Center for community service and support
2004 "Dean's Teaching Excellence Award," Brown Medical School Bio 282 Pathophysiology – Infectious Disease
2005 "Dean's Teaching Excellence Award," Brown Medical School Bio 282 Pathophysiology – Infectious Disease


1999- Staff Physician, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI
1999- Staff Physician, The Miriam Hospital, Providence, RI
1999- Staff Physician, Hasbro Children's Hospital, Providence, RI
2006- Staff Physician, Women and Infants Hospital, Providence, RI

Funded Research

1. Fogarty AIDS International Training and Research Program (NIAID TW000237). Co coordinator of Cambodian programs. Co-investigator.
2. HIV Prevention Trials Network (NIAID). Site representative for STD working group. Involved in microbicide trials and perinatal working group. Co-investigator.
3. "Pilot study of genital tract and blood plasma virology and pharmacology in HIV-1 infected women" (Rhode Island Foundation 20020737). Principal Investigator.
4. "Clinical evaluation of Vironostika HIV-1 plus o microelisa system" (Biomerieux 226034). Principal investigator. $21250.00.
5. "Sexual risk and HIV/STD in vulnerable Cambodian females" (NIAID). Co-investigator.
6. "HIV, abuse, and psychiatric disorders among youth" (NIMH 1R01MH061149-01). Co-investigator. 30 September 2000 – 21 January 2003.
7. Scholar in the "Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH Scholars) Program," NIH Grant K12 HD043447, (Coustan) to Women & Infants. 1 January 2003 – 31 December 2005.
8. Establishing a Women's HIV Clinic in Phnom Penh, Cambodia: Clinical and Research Training and Development (World AIDS Foundation 320 (03-038), Harwell). 1 September 2003 – 31 December 2005.
9. Genital Tract HIV Shedding in Cambodian Women (1 R03 TW006981-01, Harwell). 1 April 2004 – 31 March 2007.
10. "Clinical Training in Pediatric HIV Care in Clinton Foundation Partner Countries" (Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative). 1 January 2006-31 December 2006.
11. "Supplement for RCR Training in Cambodia" (5D43TW000237, Cu-Uvin). Co-investigator. $50,000. 1 September 2011 - 31 August 2012.
12. "A randomized controlled trial to assess the effect of peer support to children with HIV in relation to adherence, virological treatment failure as well as physical and cognitive development" Government of Sweden (Larson). Co-investigator. $387,000. 1 November 2011 – 31 October 2014.

View My Full Publication List in pdf format

Selected Publications

  • Theng T, Sok P, Harwell JI, Cu-Uvin S, Pugatch D. HIV prevalence among parturient women in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. International Journal of STD & AIDS (in press) 2003.(2003)
  • Harwell JI, Flanigan TP, Mitty JA, Macalino GE, Stenzel MA, Carpenter CCJ, Cu-Uvin S. Directly observed therapy to reduce genital tract and plasma HIV-1 RNA in women with poor adherence. AIDS (in press) 2003.(2003)
  • Chhin S, Rozycki G, Pugatch D, Harwell JI. Etiology of Meningitis in HIV-Infected Patients in a Referral Hospital in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. International Journal of STD & AIDS (in press) 2003.(2003)
  • Harwell JI, Moench T, Mayer KH, Chapman S, Rodriguez I, Cu-Uvin S. A Pilot Sutdy of Treatment of Bacterial Vaginosis with a Buffering Vaginal Microbicide. Women's Health and Gender Based Medicine 2003;12:255-9.(2003)
  • Tashima KT, Alt DN, Harwell JI, Fiebich-Perez DK, Flanigan TP. Internet Sex Seeking Leads to Acute HIV Infection: A Report of Two Cases. International Journal of STD and AIDS 2003;14(4); 285-6.(2003)
  • Senya C, Mehta A, Harwell JI, Pugatch D, Flanigan T, Mayer KH. Spectrum of Opportunistic Infections in Hospitalised HIV-Infected Patients in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. International Journal of STD & AIDS 2002;14:411-6.(2002)
  • Lally MA, Alvarez S, MacNevin R, Cenedella C, Dispigno M, Harwell JI, Pugatch D, Flanigan, TE. Acceptability of Sexually Transmitted Infection Screening among Women in Short-Term Substance Abuse Treatment. Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Vol. 29, No.12;752-755, December 2002.(2002)
  • Cu-Uvin S, Hogan JW, Caliendo AM, Harwell JI, Mayer KH, Carpenter CCJ. Association between bacterial vaginosis and expression of HIV-1 RNA in the female genital tract. Clin Infect Dis 2001; 33:894-6(2001)
  • Morris AB, Cu-Uvin S, Harwell JI. et al. A Multicenter Review of Protease Inhibitors in 89 Pregnancies. J AIDS 2000;25:306-311(2000)