Dr. April Joy Damian is a psychiatric epidemiologist, health services researcher, and classically trained public health professional with expertise in health equity, social determinants of health, and mixed methods. She currently serves as the Vice President and Director of the Weitzman Institute, a national research, education, and policy center dedicated to innovation and impact in primary care for the underserved. Dr. Damian concurrently serves as a Senior Scholar for Health Equity at AcademyHealth, and holds a faculty appointment at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a well sought after speaker and thought leader in health equity, and serves in multiple leadership positions in the field, including on the National Academies Board of Children, Youth, and Families, Forum for Children's Well-Being, Chair of the National Academies Healthy Parenting in Primary Care Collaborative, and AcademyHealth’s Board of Directors Standing Committee on Advocacy and Public Policy.

Dr. Damian was most recently the inaugural Vice Chair of the Health Equity/PRO/Community Engagement Committee for NIH’s RECOVER (Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery) Initiative. Dr. Damian also previously served as the Director of Quality Innovation at the National Quality Forum (NQF) where she spearheaded the expansion of NQF’s portfolio on SDOH quality measures, and co-led the NQF Measure Incubator®, an innovative effort that facilitates efficient measure development and testing through collaboration and partnership, and addresses important aspects of care for which quality measures are underdeveloped or non-existent.

Dr. Damian completed her Ph.D. in the Department of Mental Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Master’s in Medical Sciences at Harvard Medical School. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California, Berkeley with a Bachelor of Arts in Ethnic Studies, Highest Honors. She has worked with several reputable governing bodies, including the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), International Organization for Migration (IOM), as well as local health departments, on policy and programs relating to improving healthcare access and quality for medically underserved communities. She is an inducted member of the Sigma Xi Scientific Honor Society, and has received numerous recognitions in honor of her role as a social change agent, including the Harry S. Truman Scholarship, Marquis Who’s Who, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded Community Well-Being Warrior Award.

Authored by April Joy Damian, Ph.D., M.Sc.

Blog Post

Patient and Patient Advocates’ Reflections on Oral Health Care Challenges for Patients Living with HIV/AIDS

In honor of World AIDS Day, and in alignment with AcademyHealth and the Weitzman Institute’s commitment to center the voices of lived experiences, this blog highlights patient/patient partners’ perspectives on challenges that patients living with HIV/AIDs experience in obtaining oral health care.
Posted By April Joy Damian, Ph.D., M.Sc.
Blog Post

Health Equity Experts Weigh In: Recommendations for Building Up a Diverse and Inclusive Health Care and Health Services Research Workforce

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s rule on race in college admissions, experts offer five recommendations to maintain diversity and foster inclusion in college admissions and the broader HSR workforce.
Blog Post

Conducting Health Equity Research During COVID: Course Correcting Future Multi-Site Research

The final post in our Weitzman Institute blog series on conducting health equity research during the COVID-19 pandemic highlights lessons learned in a national, multi-site study involving the implementation of a novel intervention in Federally Qualified Health Centers.