Latifat is a professor of population and public health at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in Johannesburg and an adjunct research fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Lagos. She currently serves as advisor to the World Health Organization (WHO) on the TDR Implementation Research core competency framework and is a member of the research committee of the Ekurhuleni Health District in Gauteng Province, South Africa. She holds a PhD in demography and population studies, MSc (Med) in epidemiology and biostatistics, MSc in population studies and a BSc (Honors) in statistics. She holds certifications in many specialized population, health, development, and management training programs. Over the last 30 years, she has garnered considerable experience in population and public health matters, especially in sub-Saharan Africa (having lived and worked in the western, eastern and southern regions of the continent).
Currently, she serves the as academic coordinator of the MSc Epidemiology Programme of the Wits School of Public Health. She teaches and coordinates a broad range of courses, including Epidemiology, Research Methods, Implementation Science, and Quality Improvement Science. She also supervises postgraduate research as well as mentors and coaches students and junior colleagues. Her varied and growing managerial responsibilities also means that she is involved in a myriad of facilitation, resource management, representation and networking.
Prior to her current employment, she worked in government, international and research institutions (including the National Population Commission, Nigeria; UNICEF, Nigeria; the African Population and Health Research Centre, Kenya, and the Wits Graduate Programme in Demography and Population Studies). Her research focus is on promoting the sexual and reproductive health (including HIV), and well-being of different segments of the African population using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies. Of particular note is her work on adolescents as well as maternal and child health issues (family planning, unsafe abortion, preconception care, antenatal, delivery, post-natal care, vaccination, breastfeeding, diarrhea and other childhood morbidities and mortality).