Sylvanus is one of the Principal Investigators of the Trust in Medicine Project where he focuses on the translation of Ebola prevention and control measures in Sierra Leone. In this context his specific interest focuses on how religious beliefs and practices influence trust in biomedical measures prescribed during the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone.

Attachment to religious beliefs and practices, mostly when perceived as fanatical, has often been viewed as one of the crucial impeding factors. Although there appears to be much credence in this, religious beliefs and practices were not simply a barrier to establishing trust in biomedical prescription but, in some cases, a source of support in the promotion of biomedical prevention and control measures. Sylvanus’s research seeks to present a balanced view by critically examining how observance of religious beliefs and practices influenced people’s trust or distrust in the prescribed biomedical prevention and control measures. Apart from examining the impact of religious beliefs and practices on the different perceptions people hold about the origins and treatment of EVD, he further seeks to ascertain to what extent such perceptions informed health-seeking behavior, with what consequences and with what lessons learned for any future outbreak.