For June’s CHEA spotlight, we are featuring Dr. Eugenia South. She received her MD from Washington University School of Medicine and her MSHP (Master’s of Science in Health Policy) from the University of Pennsylvania as a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar. She wears many hats in Penn’s health system! Dr. South is an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, a Senior Fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute, Faculty Director of the Penn Urban Health Lab, and the Vice Chair for Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity within the Department of Emergency Medicine.
Her work focuses on combating structural racism within low-resourced and Black communities, primarily through individual and neighborhood level interventions. Dr. South’s work has been published in high impact journals such as JAMA Network Open and the American Journal of Public Health. She has also shared both her research and opinions in popular media outlets such as NBC, the Philadelphia Inquirer, and the New York Times. Dr. South joined CHEA for Health Equity Week in 2019 to discuss the role of urban nature in achieving health equity and it’s wonderful to see how her work has advanced since!
Currently, she is co-leading a team that received a $10 million grant from the National Institutes of Health. This grant will fund a study including 60 neighborhoods in Philadelphia to address the impacts of environmental and economic injustices on the health and wellbeing of Black communities. The goal of this study is to show that racial health disparities can be mediated with direct investment into the betterment of Black neighborhoods. It will be targeting some of the known root causes of health disparities in Black communities. The study team will be rehabilitating neighborhoods through tree planting, trash cleanup, and other methods of revitalizing the neighborhoods they are working with.
Penn Medicine is lucky to have someone so dedicated to the advancement of health equity!