As a social epidemiologist, Dr. Bernadette Boden-Albala's research seeks to understand the complex relationships between social determinants and disease outcomes - she brings this same passion for discovery and innovation to her role as CGPH's Associate Dean of Research and Program Development.
She believes very strongly that Public Health practice and research go hand in hand. "Indeed, the health and wellness of communities will be enriched when we create a bridge between practice and research; it's an iterative process with research providing evidence and practice informing utility. We can only do the best public health when we integrate the two," said Dr. Boden-Albala.
She is an internationally recognized expert in the use of epidemiologic tools to assess demographic and behavioral risk factors for disease. She specializes in the design of intervention strategies for prevention and preparedness of stroke and vascular risk factor reduction and the interpretation of social determinants in risk reduction strategies.
As a result of her tireless commitment to improve vascular health outcomes, Dr. Boden-Albala has been awarded more than 27 million dollars in NIH funding and close to 150 publications over the past 8 years. Her research spans ethnically diverse communities in New York City, Alaskan Native Populations and - in partnership with the American Heart Association - the Island of Grenada.
Over the past 5 years her work has examined the role of social networks in disease prevention. "We travel through life as part of groups or communities but programs to improve health focus on us as individuals. Social networks are structural platforms to disseminate information. If we improve the health of the group we improve the health of all the individuals in the group as well," said Bernadette. This tenent drives her current research trajectory that includes a grant from World Health Organization to identify the optimum social networks promoting health policy dialogue in Moldova.
Her research demonstrates a strong commitment to integrate community and improve inclusiveness. This success let to an award from NIH the National Initiative for Minority Involvement in Neurological Clinical Trials (NIMICT) Bernadette and her team are building a toolkit of materials to improve participation rates racial-ethnic minorities and women in neurological clinical trials. Additionally, as a stroke prevention trialist she serves as the Project Director and a PI of the large multi-center New York City Collaborative Stroke Regional Coordinating Center (NYCCRCC), part of NIH/NINDS StrokeNet.
Over the last 20 years, she has held leadership roles on national and local committees and task forces to improve vascular health and reduce disease.
Dr. Boden-Albala's dedication to research is perhaps surpassed only by her passion for teaching the next generation of public health professionals. In her role as Associate Dean, she has forged relationships to bring innovative new courses and programs to students. She has co-created and led with CGPH faculty Chris Dickey and Joyce O'Connor innovative courses with UNICEF and the United Nation's World Food Program to explore innovative new solutions to Ebola and Polio response and rethink a system's approach to food access. Her newest endeavor here at CGPH - an intensive one-year MPH program -- is also a labor of love. The Cross-Continental Masters in Public Health -- will offer students a one-year skills based education that will take place in NYC and across NYU's global network sites. This extraordinary new program will combine classroom learning, collaborative research with faculty mentors and public health practice experience on three different continents.
Dr. Boden-Albala received her both Masters in Public Health and Doctor of Public Health degrees from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.