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2016 Scholars

A. Susana Ramírez, PhD, MPH

 A. Susana Ramírez


Assistant Professor of Public Health Communication, University of California, Merced

Dr. A. Susana Ramírez is a social scientist whose research at the intersection of communication science and public health focuses on communication in the service of social justice and health equity among Latino populations across the acculturation spectrum.  Dr. Ramírez’ program of research has three main lines of inquiry: (1) describing the structure of the public information environment, including mass media, social media, and interpersonal sources; (2) measuring the influence of the information environment on health behaviors and outcomes; and (3) integrating theories of communication influence with cultural factors in the design of communication interventions for primary prevention of chronic diseases. Her published research has examined the development and effectiveness of culturally tailored messages for bicultural Latina populations, knowledge and beliefs about cancer risk factors, and health information seeking behaviors.  Currently funded research examines the feasibility of using mobile phones for tailored behavior change communications (K01 Mentored Career Development Award from the National Cancer Institute), examining the rural health information environment (Hellman Family Faculty Award), understanding barriers to health care decision-making (National Institute on Aging), multilevel communication strategies to create a culture of health in a diverse community (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), and community-based participatory research to prevent obesity in rural Latino families (Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development).  Dr. Ramírez is currently an Assistant Professor of Public Health Communication at the University of California in Merced. She completed a Cancer Prevention Fellowship (postdoctoral) in the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. Dr. Ramírez earned a PhD in Communication from the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, a Master of Public Health from Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Santa Clara University.