Emily Levitan

It is probably safe to say that epidemiologists have never had such a high profile as they do now. Certainly, it is a new experience to find their models analyzed and debated not just by peers but by politicians, the news media, and the general public. UAB faculty have found themselves sought-after commentators in national media. Professor Suzanne Judd, Ph.D., has made multiple appearances on Yahoo Finance videos, for example, and here’s Associate Professor Bertha Hidalgo, Ph.D., talking with Self magazine about COVID-19 transmission from mothers to infants.

School of Public Health faculty also are finding an audience in the corridors of power. Judd developed a community-based disease outbreak model for Jefferson County that she provided to the Jefferson County Department of Health. Professor Gerald McGwin, Ph.D., developed a model for the UAB Health System to predict the trajectory and characteristics of COVID-19 patients at UAB Hospital and at hospitals across the state. That work, which is helping with resource management and planning, has been done in collaboration with associate professors Emily Levitan, Sc.D., and Russell Griffin, Ph.D.

"I suspect we're going to get a lot of people who are going to want to become epidemiologists," said Levitan, who is director of the School of Public Health's doctoral program in epidemiology. "It might be the first time ever that people want to be epidemiologists when they grow up."

Read Full Article in the UAB Reporter