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Emerging Topics Experts

Basmattee Boodram Heading link

Expert on:  opioid misuse.

Basmattee Boodram is an expert in opioid misuse epidemiology among at-risk populations, including non-urban youth. Her research has elucidated factors driving heroin injection drug use and has developed and implemented a linkage to care intervention for persons who inject drugs.

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Jeni Hebert-Beirne Heading link

Expert on:  LGBTQ health, bladder and pelvic health.

Through supplemental funding from the NIH NIDDK Prevention of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms, Jeni Hebert-Beirne co-leads with Howard Brown Health an ancillary study to examine the bladder health experiences of sexual gender minorities (SGM) including individual who identify as gender non conforming, queer and trans men. Inclusion of the SGM in the NIH PLUS study assures inclusion of their unique experience in the national prevention intervention science agenda to promote bladder health across the nation.

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Linda Forst Heading link

Expert on:  COVID-19 and the workplace

Linda Forst is a board certified physician of internal and occupational medicine, currently practicing clinical occupational medicine. She volunteered on the Illinois hotline for the first few months of the pandemic, wrote guidance documents for various workforces at the request of the Illinois Department of Public Health, served as a consultant to government, industry, and community based organizations, taught a seminar on COVID-19, and is analyzing a number of population level databases in Illinois as part of the Illinois Occupational Surveillance Program, housed at UIC.

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John Herrmann Heading link

Expert on: human, animal and environmental health.

John Herrmann is an expert in One Health issues, challenges that exist at the intersection of human, animal, and environmental health. He has researched the spatial and temporal epidemiology of tick-borne illnesses in Illinois, dogs as sentinels for human cases of blastomycosis, and the impact of climate change on vector range distribution.His teaching interests include Epidemiology in Action (PubH 420) and Ecologies of Health (PubH 320).

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Elizabeth Jarpe-Ratner Heading link

Expert on: LGBT student health and wellness

Elizabeth Jarpe-Ratner’s research focuses on K-12 education and adolescent and school-based health to better understand how to adopt and implement policies, including wellness policies and district wide policies related to sexual health education and supporting transgender and gender-expansive students. Her work focuses on understanding the experiences of practitioners in schools (principals, teachers, nurses, social workers, etc.) in order to ensure they are supported in building their skills and capacities to implement policies and programs that ultimately support students’ health and well-being.

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Cynthia Klein-Banai Heading link

Expert on: climate change, sustainability.

Cynthia Klein-Banai leads campus sustainability initiatives at UIC and includes sustainability and resilience planning, implementation, tracking and reporting to meet UIC’s Climate Commitments (carbon neutral, zero waste, net zero water and biodiverse campus. She conducts research on metrics for sustainability in higher education using UIC-campus generated data for improving sustainability outcomes.

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Mary Ellen Mackesy-Amiti Heading link

Expert on: mental health among people who inject drugs.

Mary Ellen Mackesy-Amiti studies mental health among young people who inject drugs, and associations between mental health and disease risk. Her current research focuses on risky injection behavior associated with borderline personality disorder and emotion dysregulation, and employs ecological momentary assessment using mobile phones.

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Yamilé Molina Heading link

Expert on:  LGBT mental health

Yamilé Molina focuses on the needs and experiences of LGBTQ+-identified people of color, with foci in stigma, coping, mental health, and health behaviors.  Their recent work includes a study on instructional coping and a project in Peru examining mental health, stigma and coping with trans women and queer-identified men.  They are also leading national studies on racial minorities who identify as queer.

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Peter Orris Heading link

Expert on:  COVID-19 and the workplace

Peter Orris has been frequently consulted about the control and prevention of COVID-19 and the workplace and community.  Those seeking his advice have included corporations, city and county government organizations, law enforcement units, school districts, unions, preforming arts organizations, jails, worker compensation and pension funds and civic organizations.  He has been involved in two publications related to this work at the Cook County Jail and is part of a group developing a research and educational proposal for the CDC concerning jails and prisons in the U.S.

Faculty Profile