Interview with Dr. Ruth Iguiniz-Romero, Assistant Professor in Public Health, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia

October 22, 2018

This month we interview Dr. Ruth Iguiniz-Romero, Assistant Professor in Public Health from the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia.

Could you tell us something about the organization you work for and your professional background and research interests?

The Cayetano Heredia University, a non-profit institution founded on 1961, is committed to provide higher education and quality scientific research oriented to the real needs of Peru. Its influence and leadership in the health of the country has been reflected in the development of pioneering community educational programs, as well as in contributions to the solution of various pathologies, particularly in the problems of adaptation to high altitudes, goiter , acute dehydration therapy, the fight against cholera, studies and treatments against tuberculosis, sexually transmitted diseases, land other endemic diseases that affect poor and vulnerable populations in the country, among others. To read more about the university please go to

I have a PhD in Public Policy, and an MA in Anthropology at the New School University. I am currently an Assistant Professor at Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia. My field of research includes the analysis of the relationships between civil society and the state and its impact on health policies, the health system, women´s health, and the reduction of gender inequalities.

My most recent research is on maternal and reproductive health policies, reproductive decisions in populations at risk of Zika in Peru, and the intersections between medicalization of birth and obstetric violence. I have extensive teaching experience at undergraduate and graduate levels.

In what study are you using ATLAS.ti?  Tell us something about it.

Our project was a RAPID study to understand how women and men in Zika threatened communities negotiate reproductive health decisions in a context of inequality, limited resources, poor information, and disparate health access. We explored reproductive health beliefs, experiences of reproductive decision-making; and local perceptions of government responsibility in a peri-urban district in Iquitos, Peru. Since there was no widespread contagion of Zika yet, Peru offered a unique opportunity to commence the exploration of culturally patterned responses to a novel and socially complex disease; and to contribute to anthropological perspectives on infectious disease and reproduction. We sought to understand existing patterns of reproductive decision-making among partnered men and women in a community under threat of Zika and discuss how these impact Zika prevention in the long-term. We conducted focus groups and interviews with partnered women (28) and men (21) to examine if and how they negotiate contraception and condom use with their current partners. Results published: Lucia Guerra-Reyes & Ruth A. Iguiñiz-Romero (2018) Performing purity: reproductive decision-making and implications for a community under threat of Zika in Iquitos, Peru, Culture, Health & Sexuality, DOI: 10.1080/13691058.2018.146970

How are you using ATLAS.ti in this project?

As part of the Zika projects in Iquitos and Piura we collected data from around 80 interviews and five focus groups with women, men and health providers. We wanted to be able to understand each of the cases separately and also see similarities across them. ATLAS.ti allows us to fully realize that analytical scope. The emergent and predetermined coding schemes allow us to account for differences across sub-groups and the network analysis tools help us see the connections across cases in an intuitive, visual representation.


Contact information for Ruth Iguiñiz Romero

School of Public Health and Administration

Cayetano Heredia University

[email protected]

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