School of Public Health

SPH news

Posted Date: June 17, 2019

By Sally Crocker

Noah PeeriCongratulations go to UNTHSC School of Public Health (SPH) PhD – Epidemiology student Noah Peeri, who has been awarded First Place in the American Society for Nutrition’s (ASN’s) highly competitive “Emerging Leaders in Nutrition Science Poster Competition,” Neuroscience, Cognitive Function and Chronobiology Group, at the organization’s recent annual conference, Nutrition 2019, in Baltimore, Maryland.

Young investigators from top universities across the country competed for this prestigious award, including Cornell, Johns Hopkins and others.

The theme of this year’s event was “Where the Best in Science and Health Meet.”

More than 3,600 top scientific researchers, practitioners, global and public health professionals, policy makers, advocacy leaders and industry, media and other related professionals attended this year’s event, designed to advance nutrition science and its practical application.

The conference provides an immersive experience bringing together nutrition science and research with programs, presentations, professional development sessions, interactive exhibits, new products and technology, and opportunities for networking.

Peeri worked over the last year with his academic advisor, Menghua Tao, MD, PhD, SPH Assistant Professor, Biostatistics and Epidemiology, to study micronutrient intakes in relation to cognitive function in older adults, resulting in his abstract titled “Association of Vitamin D and Magnesium Status with Cognitive Function in Older Adults: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2011 to 2014,” as well as an oral flash presentation for the conference section on “Nutrition Effects on Brain and Cognition.”

Student researchers first competed in specific topic areas related to their abstracts, with the final competition held at the event’s opening reception.

ASN’s Research Interest Sections and Scientific Councils led the judging efforts.

 

 

 

Posted Date: June 15, 2019

By Sally Crocker
Bethany Smith
Meet Bethany N. Smith, RN, BSN, MPH, MS, a May 2019 graduate of the UNTHSC MPH-Professional Option degree program.

Smith is Campus Nurse for a middle school in the Weatherford Independent School District (WISD).

Her job covers four main areas. She sees and cares for students with sore throats, cuts and scratches – “what you typically consider when you think of the school nurse,” Smith says. She helps manage care for students needing daily medications and health procedures. She oversees Kanga Care, the school-based health clinic at her campus, and she also ensures that all vaccinations and mandatory screenings are completed for each student.

An important part of Smith’s role is ensuring that students have access to healthcare while at school and when they go home. In addition to managing different health-related events on campus, like shot clinics, she also provides education to families and connects them with public health resources and entities for care as needed.

In addition to her MPH, Smith holds an MS in Applied Anthropology and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. During her career, she has worked in hospital emergency services, for a day surgery clinic and at a freestanding emergency facility. She has also traveled overseas doing humanitarian work.

How did the UNTHSC MPH-Professional Option degree help her career?

“As a nurse, I had a great clinical and focused assessment for health and even public health-related illnesses/trauma,” she says. “My UNTHSC degree has helped me broaden my perspective and delivery of care to consider a more holistic and lifestyle health approach for treatment, resources that patients truly have access to, and ways of tailoring the approach to ensure better patient understanding and care.”

“Working in the ER, I saw the need for more public health programs and education. Many of the illnesses and traumas were avoidable if patients would have had access to public health information and education to help them understand the impact of health decision-making behaviors,” Smith says. “While I was working at BSA Health System in Amarillo, a previous position during my career, I obtained my MPH certification online. While traveling overseas, I saw the desperate need for public health programs internationally. This spurred me to continue the pursuit of my full MPH degree with UNTHSC.”

Her advice for current students? “Don’t limit yourself regarding where you can practice with your public health degree. There are numerous opportunities to practice public health even in the positions that do not seem directly related to public health.”

In May 2019, the UNTHSC MPH-Professional Option program celebrated a milestone, marking the graduation of more than 100 alumni since its beginning in 2012. The program was the first in Texas to offer an MPH degree option completely online.

Posted Date: May 31, 2019

By Sally Crocker

EstherannanUnder the mentorship of SPH professors Eun-Young Mun, PhD, and Erica Stockbridge, PhD, UNTHSC School of Public Health student Esther Annan recently tackled some of the key gaps and misperceptions related to managing U.S. tuberculosis risk in one of the highest-identified priority populations, those with Latent Tuberculosis Infection (LTBI).

LTBI is a disease that people can carry without knowing it. The infection can lie dormant for years or even decades without symptoms or being infectious.

However, per the CDC, as many as 13 million people in the U.S. have LTBI, and it’s estimated that anywhere from five to 10 percent of those individuals will develop active-stage TB at some point in their lifetime.

Annan’s class project attracted national interest, first through a recent oral presentation at the CDC’s Atlanta campus, to the agency’s TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium annual meeting.

Her work was then recognized at the American Thoracic Society’s annual conference held in Dallas in May, where her poster presentation was commended by session facilitators.

“Esther deserves congratulations on a job well done and for representing us so well,” said UNTHSC public health professor Thad Miller, DrPH, who leads the CDC’s TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium (TBESC) site at UNTHSC – one of the 10 funded TBESC sites across the country – and the North Texas TB Trials Consortium.

“It is exceptional to see how closely Drs. Mun and Stockbridge worked with Esther to take a class project to a national stage,” Dr. Miller said, “and we appreciate our CDC colleagues in Atlanta, whose many intellectual and other contributions allow our students to take part in applied and important public health research.”

The title of Annan’s project was “Latent Tuberculosis Infection (LTBI) in private sector healthcare: do persons with LTBI have health insurance and usual sources of healthcare?”

Posted Date: May 30, 2019

By Sally Crocker

MeecaCurrently working as Physician Assistant for Parkland Health and Hospital System – Correctional Health, Dallas.

In this position, Chenier provides medical services to incarcerated youth, offering education and encouragement “to an often forgotten, dismissed population,” she says. “To have the greatest impact on these youth, I must recognize the social determinants of health that affect this population and ensure continuity of care is maintained.”

Prior to assuming her current role, she served for two years as Physician Assistant for Parkland’s Global Diabetes program, and before becoming a PA, Chenier held various roles related to medical disability determination with the Social Security Disability program and Cigna insurance.

In addition to her UNTHSC MPH-Professional Option degree (’19), she holds a Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) degree, a BS in Physician Assistant Studies, a BS in General Studies (Biology concentration), and an Associate of Applied Science degree.

“The UNTHSC MPH program gave me a broader understanding of how to impact health and well-being in the community I serve,” she says. “With a heightened awareness of public policy, biostatistics and research, social determinants of health, and the role of public health agencies on a local and national level, I am empowered to expand my work within the community to involve more than individual medical care.”

Chenier says she was drawn to UNTHSC because of its reputation for being “a close-knit atmosphere with intelligent yet down-to-earth instructors.”

“Being a busy wife and mother and working full-time as a PA, I really appreciated the opportunity to complete most courses online,” she says. “When I decided to pursue a career in medicine, I wanted to ultimately work within an underserved community.  Obtaining a graduate degree in public health has helped me further understand how to enhance my impact on health and well-being within the Dallas community.”

Chenier cites the faculty’s passion as the foundation for a meaningful UNTHSC experience. “Every course I completed in this program was led by dedicated, knowledgeable and helpful instructors that poured their love for what they do into their lessons,” she says.

Her advice for current students? “During your coursework, take the opportunity to network with your peers and public health officials within your community.  Use the public health internship to your advantage and work with an organization that you can envision partnering with in the future.”

In May 2019, the UNTHSC MPH-Professional Option program celebrated a milestone, marking the graduation of more than 100 alumni since its beginning in 2012. The program was the first in Texas to offer an MPH degree option completely online.

Posted Date: May 20, 2019

By Sally Crocker

Unt Health Science Center 2019 Graduation. May 18, 2019.

Thad Miller, DrPH, MPH, School of Public Health Associate Professor of Health Behavior and Health Systems and this year’s UNTHSC Faculty Achievement Award winner, has been inspired by many influences in his life: family, his desire to serve others through faith and community, the opportunity to create change in the world through research and action, and some good old fashioned values learned from a long line of salt-of-the-earth Erath County farmers.

But what inspires Dr. Miller the most is being a teacher.

Through his graduate public health classes that emphasize problem-solving, creativity, critical thinking, interprofessionalism and collaborative, project-based work, he has earned consistently high student rankings and is known as a professor who provides “substantial opportunities for growth and learning.”

As leader of the CDC’s Tuberculosis Epidemiologic Studies Consortium (TBESC) UNTHSC site – one of 10 funded TBESC sites across the country – and the North Texas TB Trials Consortium, he has served as both a researcher focused on TB elimination and as mentor to students working on the many related projects of this effort.

It seems that some of his proudest moments are when UNTHSC students present their research to CDC committees and move on to their next career opportunities.

A good deal of Dr. Miller’s inspiration comes from his father, a much-admired, longtime high school teacher who was present in the classroom up until the time he died.

“My father had a love of learning; he saw students as what they could be, not what they were, and brought out their best,” Dr. Miller said. “His funeral service was overflowing, and even now, 20 years later, people still stop me in our little town to say how much he meant to them. I try to honor him by following his example.”

“Like my dad, I think my work teaching is probably the part of my job that will outlive me,” he said.

Passing on those same values to his own children has been important to Dr. Miller and his wife Kelly, a local pediatrician and TCOM graduate.

For as long as their two grown daughters can remember, the family has traveled to Mexico on their spring breaks, helping to set up visiting clinics and deliver medical supplies and services to remote communities through the non-profit group Mision de Candelilla, one of the international volunteer efforts that Dr. Miller has been drawn to over the years.

Unfazed by language barriers, the Miller girls and local children would reunite at each visit, playing outside during clinic hours and building lasting friendships over family group dinners later.

“Being a part of something like this really gives perspective,” Dr. Miller said. “You put your own needs on the shelf and spend the week serving others first. My family and I have gained as much from the friendships and experiences over the years as the people we have helped care for.”

In the small Erath County community that the Millers call home, the motto has always been “good begets good, and kindness and generosity will ripple out well beyond our own time and understanding,” Dr. Miller said.

“There is not one of us who doesn’t need the help of others from time to time. I’ve been a farmer all my life, and the child of farmers back who knows how many generations,” he said. “We stand on the many shoulders of those whose hard work made our successes possible, and I know very few people who don’t work hard to make the world better in some way.”

The nominees for this year’s prestigious UNTHSC Faculty Achievement Award were selected by their peers for exemplary performance in the areas of teaching, research/scholarship, service and leadership, and Dr. Miller’s story is one great example of the way that faculty are impacting lives every day, both professionally and personally.

“Neighbors help neighbors. As my world has gotten bigger, so has how I view my neighborhood,” Dr. Miller said. “In my mind, it extends well beyond Erath County, beyond Fort Worth and UNTHSC, to all the world. Volunteer service, teaching and research are all part of a team effort to do right by those around us. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that for others?”

Posted Date: May 16, 2019

By Sally Crocker

MoonanMeet Dr. Moonan, a UNT Health Science Center 2005 DrPH (Epidemiology) and 2002 MPH-Epidemiology graduate.

Job Title: Associate Chief of Science, Division of Global HIV and Tuberculosis, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Atlanta.

Dr. Moonan is currently responsible for maintaining scientific integrity for all tuberculosis-related activities with the Division of Global HIV and Tuberculosis and within CDC’s implementation of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).

His previous job titles have included:

• Senior Epidemiologist, July 2017 to December 2018, Global Tuberculosis Branch, Division of Global HIV and Tuberculosis, CDC, Atlanta.

• Interim Tuberculosis Branch Chief (National TB Advisor), January 2017 to July 2017, Center for Global Health, India Country Office, CDC, New Delhi, India.

• Senior Epidemiologist, June 2015 to December 2016, Global Tuberculosis Branch, Division of Global HIV and Tuberculosis, CDC, Atlanta.

• Senior Epidemiologist, May 2010 to June 2015, International Research and Programs Branch, Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, CDC, Atlanta.

• Team Lead, Molecular Epidemiology, January 2008 to April 2010, Surveillance, Epidemiology, Outbreak Investigations Branch, Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, CDC, Atlanta.

• Staff Epidemiologist, June 2005 to December 2007, Surveillance, Epidemiology, Outbreak Investigations Branch, Division of Tuberculosis Elimination, CDC, Atlanta.

• Biostatistician, February 2005 to May 2005, Division of Epidemiology and Health Information, Tarrant County Public Health Department, Fort Worth.

• Research Epidemiologist/Instructor of Medicine, December 2001 to February 2005, UNT Health Science Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Fort Worth.

• Epidemiology Specialist, September 1999 to December 2001, Tuberculosis Elimination and Refugee Services, Tarrant County Public Health Department, Fort Worth.

Thoughts on his UNTHSC experience: “I was very fortunate to begin my public health career at a local health department where both research and practice held equal importance,” Dr. Moonan said. “Through outstanding and supportive mentorship, I built a reputation for scientific productivity, rigor, integrity, and ultimately, became an internationally recognized tuberculosis specialist.”

Advice for future students: “Education is not found only in textbooks and classrooms. You cannot practice public health from behind a desk — find every opportunity to engage your community,” Dr. Moonan said. “Become active in research. And above all, emphasize service before self.”

Posted Date: May 16, 2019

By Sally Crocker
Linda L. ChengLinda L. Cheng, DDS, MPH, CPH, FAGD, ABGD, is a Clinical Associate Professor and a Group Leader in the Department of Comprehensive Dentistry at Texas A&M University College of Dentistry.

She has been a faculty member at the dental college since 2001 and was recently promoted to Clinical Associate Professor, effective September 2019.

Dr. Cheng is a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry and a Diplomate of the American Board of General Dentistry.

As a Group Leader, she oversees patient care and the clinical supervision of dental students, coordinating their daily clinical activities, evaluating and providing them feedback on their progress.

“Every day, I have the opportunity to work with dental students from all different backgrounds to prepare them in assessing, treating and improving the oral health of the community,” she said.

Dr. Cheng immediately started teaching as a part-time faculty member at the dental college after finishing her Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency in 2000 and Post-Residency Fellowship in Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry in 2001. She was in private practice for 10 years before becoming a full-time faculty member and Group Leader at the dental college.

She also wrote critical summaries and was an evidence reviewer for the American Dental Association Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry from 2013-2017. Some of these summaries were published in the Journal of the American Dental Association.

Dr. Cheng will receive her MPH, Professional Option concentration, and CPH credentials at her May 2019 graduation. In addition to her UNTHSC degree, she holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology from Baylor University and a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Texas A&M University College of Dentistry.

“I enrolled with UNTHSC as an online student because it gave me the flexibility I needed to pursue an MPH degree while working full time,” she said. “My UNTHSC degree has helped me to better critically appraise the evidence I see in publications and appreciate what contributes to oral health disparities and what progress is being made toward achieving oral health equity in the future.”

“My most valuable experience at UNTHSC was completing my practice experience project on Medicaid coverage of silver diamine fluoride. I had the opportunity to correspond and share the results of my project with Mr. Andrew Snyder at the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) headquarters in Baltimore, Maryland.  Mr. Snyder is a health insurance specialist at CMS with the Division of Quality and Health Outcomes, Children and Adults Health Program Groups,” she said.

Dr. Cheng says she was drawn to a public health-related career “because so many variables affect health besides just the technical delivery of treatment.” “From research to clinical practice to health policies,” she said, “if I understand how it affects patients, then I know what I need to do better, what is the mission and vision, and how I can contribute to improving the oral health in the community.”

Her advice for current students? “Do your best and surround yourself with the right people. These could be people who simply believe in you and share your values or people who are instrumental in helping you get where you want to be. In tough times, gratitude is key. It is a privilege to have an education, and it is a privilege to be in public health to better people’s lives.”

Posted Date: May 2, 2019
Diana Cervantes

Dr. Diana Treviño Cervantes

By Sally Crocker

The best way to learn about public health is to live it.

As a UNT Health Science Center student working on her master’s and doctoral degrees, Diana Treviño Cervantes, DrPH, MPH, was already actively pursuing a career where she could make a difference in the lives of others.

Dr. Cervantes was employed as a microbiologist for Tarrant County Public Health when she first enrolled at UNTHSC, and then later moved into an epidemiologist position there.

Over the years since graduation, she was appointed Regional Chief Epidemiologist for the Texas Department of State Health Services, Region 2/3, serving 49 North Texas counties for four years before joining Baylor Scott and White All Saints Medical Center, Fort Worth, as Infection Control Manager.

She has also taught courses for the UNTHSC School of Public Health on an adjunct basis since 2012, and now she’s joining the school full time as the new Director of the MPH in Epidemiology program.

“One of the things I’ve always tried to bring to the classes I’ve taught is what it really means to work in public health, in both community and private settings,” Dr. Cervantes said. “In my own experiences of hiring and mentoring staff, I’ve found that the strongest job candidates tend to be those with practical working experience that complements their educational background.”

A big challenge for students, she said, is learning to translate their knowledge into action, whether in public health or most any profession.

“Especially in epidemiology, where you’re working with many different stakeholders, it’s important to break down scholarly research so it translates to all of your audiences,” she said. “Speaking to academic peers is one thing, but if you’re going into a neighborhood or community meeting to talk about a public health concern, you have to be able to make that leap with your message delivery to get others on board.”

Public health professionals may work at the local, state, national or even international level, depending on the issue and its impact, Dr. Cervantes said, citing infectious disease outbreaks like influenza, West Nile and the Ebola virus as examples where a problem is far-reaching.

Another important aspect of the field that Dr. Cervantes stresses to students is responsiveness.

“Public health is a lot about emerging situations and responding to changes as they occur. The current opioid crisis is just one example of a widespread public health problem that requires all of our attention now as researchers, citizens and communities,” she said.

Collaboration and being open minded when exploring solutions and possibilities are an important part of an epidemiology career, Dr. Cervantes said, “as is the ability to balance everyday aspects of the job with the critical research, analysis, writing and reporting that goes into it.”

“In my new role with UNTHSC, I hope to use my own experiences and contacts to provide resources, guidance, case examples from the field and the perspectives of ‘one who has been there’ to help prepare students for the challenges and responsibilities they will be taking on in the future,” she said.

“It’s exciting to come full circle with UNTHSC,” Dr. Cervantes said, “from student to practice and now back on campus directing the MPH Epidemiology program.”

Posted Date: April 26, 2019

By Sally Crocker

Opioid Exhibit April 2019

Exhibit coordination credits: Shea Patterson Young, UNTHSC Office of the President, and Sally Crocker, SPH.

Every day, more than 130 Americans die and more than 1,000 people are treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments for misuse of opioids like heroin, fentanyl, Oxycontin and other prescription pain relievers.

“Arguably, the opioid epidemic is our country’s foremost public health challenge,” said Dr. Dennis Thombs, Dean of the UNTHSC School of Public Health, and the driving force behind a new, educational public exhibit space on campus dedicated to this widespread national health problem.

“More than 11.4 million Americans misused prescription opioids in 2017, accounting for 67% of U.S. drug overdose deaths,” he said. “This is truly a national emergency of epic proportions.”

Dr. Thombs was inspired to create a learning space within the SPH where the campus and community could gather information about this problem and its causes.

“There are many reasons for the current opioid epidemic,” Dr. Thombs said. “The impact of illegal overseas drug production entering the U.S. tells just one side of the story. As shown through court cases and investigations, major pharmaceutical companies, or ‘Big Pharma,’ also share in the blame.”

In recent breaking news, former executives from one of the country’s top 10 largest pharmaceutical distributors made headlines when they were charged with criminal conspiracy to defraud the U.S., violation of narcotics laws and willful failure to report suspicious drug orders, in what is being called the first landmark legal action in the fight against the opioid crisis.

Currently, 41 state attorneys general have filed lawsuits against opioid producers for their role in the crisis.

More details on Big Pharma’s influences on the medical industry, politics, government and an unwitting general public are shared in the SPH exhibit.

A portion of the exhibit is also dedicated to what has been called “deaths of despair,” focused on another critical impetus behind the opioid epidemic.

In a 1999-2014 national study, research found that for each 1% rise in county unemployment rates, there was a 7% jump in opioid overdose emergencies and a 3.6% increase in opioid deaths.

“Studies have found that economically dislocated workers impacted by the stress of recession and loss of jobs are more vulnerable and apt to cope with their emotional distress through risky behaviors and use of drugs like opioids,” Dr. Thombs said.

In addition to other key aspects of the current opioid crisis, the SPH exhibit highlights different states where the problem is especially prevalent.

“Texas has had lower rates of overdose and deaths than many other states so far,” Dr. Thombs said. “Advisories warn, though, that it may only be a matter of time before the epidemic reaches our own local communities and threatens the lives of people here in Texas.”

The self-guided exhibit can be viewed at any time in the SPH student lounge, seventh floor of the Carl E. Everett Education and Administration (EAD) building. Access to all research sources and background information is provided.

Concerned about a friend or someone close to you? For information on Naloxone, the emergency opioid overdose antidote available to the public without questions or a prescription, learn more here.

Posted Date: April 17, 2019

By Sally Crocker

Migala Tpha Pic

Dr. Migala taking office as new TPHA president

 

Dr. Witold Migala is ready to hit the road again.

The epidemiologist who has traveled the world helping people from Haiti and Madagascar to Nigeria and beyond has lived, worked in or experienced more than 75 countries during his lifetime.

He was in the first UNT Health Science Center cohort to graduate with the Master of Public Health degree back in 1997 and subsequently earned his PhD through UNTHSC’s up-and-coming, new Public Health program in 2000.

He returned in recent years to teach for the School of Public Health (SPH) and serve as director of its MPH in Epidemiology program.

Not surprisingly, he also developed the school’s Global Health Graduate Certificate program.

Never one to settle in a typical office space for too long, Dr. Migala recently felt the familiar call back to international field work, leading to the next phase of his career that begins this summer.

As he takes on a new role as President of the Texas Public Health Association (TPHA) and transitions to adjunct professor status with the SPH, Dr. Migala plans to continue representing UNT Health Science Center and the strides that students, faculty and alumni are making to improve public health around the world, as he himself goes back out on the road to real-life practice.

“It hit me one day while I was going through pictures I use in my classes that they seemed fairly dated and I probably needed more recent examples of field work if I’m going to share them with students,” he said.

UNTHSC students have gained real-life perspectives far beyond traditional textbook cases and study examples by learning from Dr. Migala’s own international experiences with the CDC, World Health Organization and other agencies, where he has helped develop immunization initiatives and other international health service programs.

“I’ve always felt at home delivering healthcare services to isolated communities where people don’t have the basic resources that most of us take for granted here in the United States, and it just seems like it’s time for me to get back on the road,” he said. “At its root, public health is as much global as it is local.”

He once traveled by four-wheel drive and motorcycle, via canoe and on foot to 58 remote medical clinics in Madagascar over 90 days, sleeping wherever he could on floors, hospital beds and chairs in order to track down possible polio cases and help confer the country’s first year “eradication status” on behalf of the United Nations.

This is a key part of international work that many people might not initially consider, and it’s challenging, Dr. Migala said.

“We don’t always think about the bugs and the heat, the health and safety risks, lack of accommodations and food options, the long hours traveling in trucks on unpaved roads to reach places where even the most basic resources are scarce,” he said. “Personally, that’s the part I love the most.”

There are also significant victories that can only happen when people come together on a very personal level regardless of culture, language and other differences, like the time Dr. Migala worked closely with tribal elders and traditional healers in one reluctant village to immunize against polio.

Over time, he was able to gain their trust and support enough that the chief leader volunteered his young son to be the first for vaccination.

Other global health initiatives he has been a part of have addressed cholera, typhoid fever and infectious and parasitic outbreaks that are relatively unheard of in the United States.

Back home, an important part of Dr. Migala’s experience was also gained in the North Texas area.

He spent a decade as Chief Epidemiologist for the City of Fort Worth, managing the community’s Bioterrorism and Emergency Preparedness Program for six of those years.

“Fort Worth’s population at that time was around 780,000, and the response planning goal was to be able to mobilize local resources to provide medication to all citizens within 48 hours,” he said. “I find myself drawn to complex challenges like this, involving systems development, administrative processes and managerial oversight.”

Complex challenges are, indeed, the driving force behind Dr. Migala’s latest career move.

Returning to life on the road might not be easy but it’s important.

For this roving epidemiologist, it’s the passion, and maybe a healthy dose of wanderlust, that keeps him moving.