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Keynote Speaker 2019 Symposium

Building Capacity in Health Disparities Research

Mona Fouad, MD, MPH

Professor of Medicine
Director, Division of Preventive Medicine
Senior Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion, School of Medicine
University of Alabama at Birmingham

Mona Fouad, MD, MPH is Professor of Medicine, Director of the Division of Preventive Medicine, and Senior Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion in the School of Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and Founding Director of the UAB Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center.  She is recognized nationally as a leader in health disparities research and served as a member of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities from 2008-2012. In 2017, Dr. Fouad was elected a member of the National Academy of Medicine.  She obtained her MD from Alexandria University School of Medicine in Alexandria, Egypt, and her MPH from the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health. Dr. Fouad’s career has focused on the health of minority and underserved populations, including efforts to increase involvement of special and underrepresented populations in research.  She serves as PI of the NIMHD U54 Obesity Health Disparities Research Center (OHDRC), previously funded since 2003 as an NIMHD P60 Center of Excellence. The OHDRC focuses on the theme of obesity and obesity-related health disparities across the Life Course.  Dr. Fouad has contributed to the science of health disparities through major studies to identify variability in cancer care and outcomes based on race, gender, and age. She has developed nationally emulated models in recruitment and retention of minorities in clinical trials and innovative community-based approaches to reducing racial disparities in breast and cervical cancer. She has been the driving force behind interdisciplinary research efforts for understanding problems related to cancer screening and cancer risk factors in the Deep South. Her work in translating science into practice has improved health outcomes in minority and other vulnerable populations. As a direct result of her research projects, racial disparities in breast cancer screening in Alabama Black Belt counties were virtually eliminated, as were disparities in access to cancer care.  Dr. Fouad has also played a prominent leadership role, both regionally and nationally, in promoting diversity in medical education. Dr. Fouad has led in the efforts to promote minority students, researchers, and leaders through joint programs with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other minority-serving academic institutions. She serves as PI of the NIDDK-funded UAB STEP-UP: Promoting Diversity through Mentored Research Experiences, whose goal is to enhance the diversity of the nation’s research workforce by providing mentored research training to promising undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical, clinical and behavioral research.