SPH Stories

Featured stories about SPH people, research and impact.

Analysis of data on 53,581 individuals from diverse backgrounds offers insights into population health

Just over a year since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in the United States was identified in the Seattle area, the novel coronavirus continues to dominate news headlines and scientific jargon like ‘variants’ and ‘genome sequencing’ has become part of everyday conversations.

For nearly three decades, Grace John-Stewart, a professor of global health and epidemiology at the University of Washington School of Public Health, has devoted her career to improving HIV prevention and treatment.

How planned giving helps attract the best and brightest to public health

From cleaning agents and personal care products to paints and pesticides, chemicals touch every part of our lives. An estimated 80,000 to 90,000 chemicals are in commercial use today, yet only a few hundred are known “to the level of no surprises,” says Bruce Fowler, a University of Washington alumnus and expert on the toxicology of metals.  

Former Dean Gilbert S. Omenn, MD, PhD, and his wife, Martha A. Darling, have made one of the largest individual gifts to the University of Washington School of Public Health in support of the 50th Anniversary for the SPH and the launch of the UW Population Health Initiative. These funds will create modern research and service lab facilities in the Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences (DEOHS), facilitating collaboration, intellectual exchange, training, and public/private innovation.

Stephanie Farquhar, PhD, MA, has been named associate dean for evaluation and improvement. This is a new position at the University of Washington School of Public Health to help the School make better use of data to meet new goals in a variety of areas, from strategic planning, to student services to equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Joseph Babigumira, MBChB, MS, PhD, has left his position as associate professor in the Department of Global Health, after nine years of service to his students, peer faculty and staff. Joseph has been an important contributor to the School of Public Health and the wider University of Washington community since he arrived in 2006 as a PhD student in the School of Pharmacy.  Over the years, he has touched many of us with his thoughtfulness, sincerity, quiet activism and dry wit – we will miss him greatly.  

Esther Solano, a 2020 graduate of the University of Washington School of Public Health, received the Washington State Public Health Association’s (WSPHA) Exceptional Student Award for her commitment to the field through coursework and community involvement. She was presented with the award virtually Oct. 14 during the WSPHA’s annual meeting.

David Eaton honored with David Rall Medal

Three UW School of Public Health faculty were among 100 scientists elected to the National Academy of Medicine today:

As wildfires continue to burn across the western United States – intensified by warmer, drier conditions caused by climate change – more attention is being paid to the region’s parched forests, and to the people making these forests more resilient to fires.

While it is already known through previous research that United States consumers each waste about a pound of food each day, a new report published Aug. 21 by the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) says this food waste is driven by both individual choices and by a system that leads consumers toward choices that ultimately result in such waste.

Oceans affect every human life – no matter how far away from a coastline a community may be.

Oceans supply fresh water and oxygen, regulate the climate, influence the weather and affect human health. Humans rely on these large bodies of water for food, income, transportation and recreation. In turn, human activities can impact oceans and the systems they support.

Results show lower levels of harmful air pollution after Seattle shutdown

Stay-at-home orders issued in Seattle in response to COVID-19 led to a significant drop in some of the most harmful air pollutants to human health, according to a novel method used by the University of Washington School of Public Health.

Erin Lee brought a level of dedication and well-crafted intention to her work as a Department of Health Services master’s student at the UW School of Public Health that was on par with the efforts and skills of many first- or second-year doctoral students.

Lee, who graduated in July, has earned numerous honors for her work — Husky 100, UW Bonderman Fellowship, School of Public Health’s Outstanding Student Community Service Award, and the Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity’s Graduate Opportunities and Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP) Scholar of the Year.

The University of Washington Population Health Initiative has awarded COVID-19 population health equity research grants to six projects involving partnerships between UW School of Public Health researchers and community leaders.

As school districts across the United States grapple with how, or even if, to reopen schools in the fall, a new report from researchers at the University of Washington Schools of Public Health offers lessons learned from other countries that can form the building blocks of school reopening plans closer to home.

A monthly vaginal ring is one significant step closer to potentially becoming a new HIV prevention method for cisgender women in sub-Saharan Africa, who face persistently high rates of HIV infection but have few options to protect themselves.

Elizabeth Halloran, a professor of biostatistics and of epidemiology at the University of Washington School of Public Health, has been elected to the Washington State Academy of Sciences, according to an announcement July 15 by the academy. She is among seven new members for 2020 who hail from the UW.

Kenneth Mugwanya, an assistant professor of global health at the University of Washington School of Public Health, and his research team have received a five-year, $3 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to test the effectiveness of integrating methods of HIV prevention into sexual and reproductive health services for women in Kenya.

By the end of the century, heat exposure may lead to approximately 110,000 premature deaths annually across the United States in a high climate-warming scenario, suggests a new study published in GeoHealth

Since improved nutrition standards for school meals were put into action across the United States in 2012, children – especially those from low-income households – have been eating healthier school lunches with better overall nutritional quality, a study published July 28 in JAMA found.