Mona Fouad, M.D., MPH, director of the UAB Division of Preventive Medicine has been selected as one of 30 inspiring women in the 2016 Alabama Media Group’s “Women Who Shape the State”. This statewide program recognizes incredible women who are impacting Alabama through their efforts in communities, business, service organizations and philanthropy.
The second annual Women Who Shape the State awards evolved out of the Birmingham-based Women Who Make a Difference, which began in 2013, and last year expanded to honor women throughout Alabama. Out of the more than 100 nominations that were received, the selection committee chose Fouad to join the 2016 honorees, based on her work in empowering various communities to improve their health.
Fouad is the founding director of the UAB Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center, senior associate dean for diversity and inclusion at the UAB School of Medicine and senior advisor to the director at the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center.
“Mona approaches the problem of health disparities with the vision, compassion, and integrity of a great leader, philanthropist, and human being. She is an exceptional female scientist and educator who embodies the principles of diversity, justice, and equity,” said Edward Partridge, MD, director of the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center.
As a physician scientist, Fouad has led major studies to identify variability in cancer care and outcomes based on race, gender, and age. She has developed nationally emulated models for recruitment and retention of minorities in clinical trials, and innovative community-based approaches for reducing racial disparities in breast and cervical cancer.
She established UAB HealthSmart, an innovative preventive medicine and wellness facility in Birmingham, to provide free health evaluations and screenings, health, nutrition, and physical activity counseling and a variety of health education activities.
To overcome resistance to clinical trials and build a bridge between patients and the healthcare system, Fouad created a patient navigation program in which trusted lay community health advisors help patients to overcome barriers that impact their treatment like transportation, lodging, and financial issues.
Mona Fouad has played a prominent leadership role in promoting diversity and justice in medical education. She has trained more than 400 faculty and fellows, graduate and undergraduate minority students, creating a pipeline of minority health practitioners and researchers.