Research is one of the core functions of the University aiming at generation and advancement of knowledge. MUHAS is one of the major institutions undertaking health research in the country and the research results generated have provided valuable evidence-based information for guiding the management, control and prevention of major diseases.
Currently, there are 87 major research links at MUHAS involving bilateral collaborations.  The research policy of the University targets major health issues including;
HIV and AIDS, Malaria, reproductive health, health systems research and traditional medicine. Research at MUHAS is undertaken by staff and students, particularly those pursuing postgraduate training.
At MUHAS the Directorate of Research and Publications (DRP) is charged with the responsibility of promoting, coordinating and monitoring research. The Directorate is assisted in its functions by the Senate Research and Publication Committee. The committee draws representatives from all Schools and institutes and other stakeholders. With the transformation of the institution into a full-fledged University the research activities will inevitably increase. However, the capacity of the DRP to manage the increasing research activities is limited and there is therefore a need to strengthen the Directorate.
Research at MUHAS has been generally donor dependent and the Government support over a number of years has been less than 2%. However the Government has continued to provide 100% of salaries of the University staff and costs of the institutional infrastructure and facilities, which is a significant contribution in terms of the total research costs. Given the importance of research the Government has the responsibility to increase research funding for the University in order to encourage undertaking the relevant research for national development
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