Perry Halkitis, dean of the Rutgers School of Public Health, has been selected as a fellow into the 2021 cohort at The College of Physicians of Philadelphia.
Founded in 1787, The College of Physicians of Philadelphia is the oldest medical organization in the United States. The organization seeks to advance health by serving as a forum for physicians, healthcare providers, and researchers to discuss their concerns, learn the latest advances in medicine, and address public health issues within communities.
“I am honored to be inducted as a fellow into The College of Physicians of Philadelphia,” says Halkitis who is also the director of the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior and Prevention Studies (CHIBPS). “The College recognizes my scholarly work, which addresses the need for a multidisciplinary approach that requires a wide range of individuals with different skills and backgrounds to improve health and wellbeing.”
Halkitis is an infectious disease epidemiologist and public health psychologist who conducts work as a researcher, educator, and activist. He has long advocated for the need to close the chasm between clinical care and public health.
In a recent paper published in American Psychologist, he explores how integrating the social and structural deterministic perspectives inherent to public health efforts with the individualistic and behavioral focus of medicine, can improve the health of all people and populations.
“As a fellow of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, I look forward to connecting with individuals who are committed to working towards health equity through collaborative and multidisciplinary efforts that will be needed in order to dismantle systems of oppression and discrimination that fuel the rampant health disparities that exist in our country,” adds Halkitis.
“Rutgers is very proud of Dean Halkitis’ numerous accomplishments and leadership in the public health field both in the academic realm and in measurable community impact,” says Brian L. Strom, chancellor of Rutgers Biomedical Health Sciences. “He is well deserving of the recognition from this venerable and historic honorific society. We are confident he will continue to bring the issues of health equity and access to the forefront of public debate, made even more urgent by the pandemic.”
For three decades, Halkitis’ research has focused on the emergence, prevention, and treatment of infectious diseases, specifically, HIV, HPV, and other sexually transmitted infections, and more recently SARS-CoV-2. His program of study has sought to disentangle the biological, behavioral, psychosocial, and structural mechanisms that predispose people and populations to these infectious diseases, and the synergies of infectious disease with mental health burden – including drug abuse – in sexual, gender, and racial, and ethnic minority populations.
“We are delighted to welcome Dr. Halkitis to the newest cohort of passionate and esteemed fellows,” says George M. Wohlreich, president and CEO of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia. “His dedication to public health education is truly admirable, and we welcome his contributions to the Fellowship and the College.”