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In the Field

We are at work addressing public health issues across the world.

Selected Projects


An Inside Look at a Potential Cancer Cluster:

Community Impacts and Challenges for Public Health Investigators

A Bloomberg School investigative team of faculty, staff, and students examined and documented the difficulties community members and public health officials face in dealing with a potential cancer cluster. Those challenges are captured through oral histories about decades of disease in the neighborhoods surrounding Fort Detrick, U.S. Army Base in Frederick, Maryland. In interviews, public health researchers discuss obstacles they confront around epidemiological issues in investigating the potential disease cluster in Fort Detrick and other local communities across the country. Resources and advice for communities and public health professionals looking to address similar issues are also available.

Protecting the Health of Local Communities:

Assessing Health and Public Health in Delaware County, Pennsylvania 

Delaware County, Pennsylvania, is the only county in the Philadelphia metropolitan area without a designated county health department. To determine how best to protect the health of its residents, the Delaware County Council hired a team of Bloomberg School faculty and students led by Paulani Mui, MPH, Beth Resnick, DrPH, MPH, and Aruna Chandran, MD, MPH, to assess the health of the county and determine how best to deliver health and public health services. 

The team provided an assessment of the health of Delaware County and presented recommendations to inform the establishment of a county health department to protect the health of all Delaware County residents and advance health equity.

Read the report here.

Making a Nationwide Impact: Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPO) 

Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) laws are helping to prevent gun deaths and protect communities. Their implementation—in 19 states and the District of Columbia—is part of a national effort to reduce the daily loss of life due to firearm violence, including gun suicide.Bloomberg School faculty members Shannon Frattaroli, PhD, MPH, and Josh Horwitz, JD, through their work with the Consortium for Risk-Based Firearm Policy, are leading national efforts to advance ERPO implementation. They have designed an interactive, central website to access information about ERPO laws, research, training, and communications to help inform policy development and implementation in local jurisdictions across the nation.This ERPO effort is part of the Bloomberg American Health Initiative, which supports a broad range of practice efforts at the School and with partner organizations to advance the nation’s health across the issues of addiction and overdose, adolescent health, environmental challenges, obesity and the food system, and violence.

Advocating for Reproductive Health in Low-Income Countries

The Advance Family Planning (AFP) advocacy initiative within the Bill & Melinda Gates Institute for Population and Reproductive Health comprises more than 20 cross-sector organizations in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia, expanding global access to quality contraceptive information, services, and supplies. Conceptualized and established by Bloomberg School faculty member Duff Gillespie, PhD, AFP has successfully helped to expand and enact family planning policies, increase allocation of funds for family planning, develop and implement effective monitoring and evaluation tools, and train over 300 individuals using the AFP SMART advocacy training framework. 

Gillespie’s efforts have created a new and powerful cohort of family planning champions to fight for the information, services, and supplies that promote the health and prosperity of women, men, and young people throughout the world.

Advancing Humanitarian Mental Health Initiatives in Uganda

Through his work with the Peter C. Alderman Foundation (PCAF), a nongovernmental organization providing mental health care to survivors of armed conflict in Burundi, Cambodia, Kenya, and Uganda, Bloomberg School faculty member Wietse Tol, PhD, MA, has been instrumental in the implementation of critical international humanitarian mental health programs. 

Tol led the adaptation and evaluation of a guided self-help intervention for South Sudanese refugees and spearheaded an innovative maternal mental health program in partnership with PCAF and the Ministry of Health for post-conflict areas of Uganda. Thanks to Tol’s leadership, PCAF has been able to strengthen and expand community-based and preventive approaches to mental health care in the communities they serve.