Ashish Jha is new dean of Brown School of Public Health

Dr. Ashish K. Jha
Dr. Ashish K. Jha; photo credit: Brown School of Public Health

Indian American pandemic expert Ashish Jha is on the frontlines of covid-19 response.

Indian American physician, Ashish K. Jha,  a globally recognized expert on pandemic preparedness and response and health policy research, has joined Providence, Rhode Island based Brown School of Public Health as its third dean.

He comes to the Brown School of Public Health after leading the Harvard Global Health Institute and teaching at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Harvard Medical School since 2004.

Born in Pursaulia, Bihar, India in 1970, Jha has led groundbreaking research around Ebola and is now on the frontlines of the covid-19 response, advising state and federal policy makers, according to his official biography.

“In the midst of the largest public health crisis in a century, this is a moment to recast and reinvigorate public health,” he wrote in a message to the Brown Public Health Community on joining his new post.

“We at the Brown School of Public Health are uniquely able to do so,”  Jha wrote noting, “Brown University offers extraordinary academic strengths, a highly unique collaborative culture, and the ability to maximize the impact of our work at the School of Public Health.”

“Our field tackles complex problems, from how systemic racism shapes the lives and health of so many of our fellow Rhode Islanders and Americans, to the health challenges created by climate change,” he added.

“Bringing in more diverse voices to change the face of public health leadership will elevate and address key issues central to closing the gap in public health outcomes,” Jha wrote.

According to Jha’s biography, he has published more than two hundred original research publications in prestigious journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine and the British Medical Journal, and is a frequent contributor to a range of public media.

He has extensively researched how to improve the quality and reduce the cost of health care, focusing on the impact of public health policy nationally and around the globe.

Before joining the Brown School of Public Health,  Jha was the Faculty Director of the Harvard Global Health Institute from 2014 until September 2020.

From 2018 to 2020, he served as the Dean for Global Strategy at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

A general internist previously with the West Roxbury VA in Massachusetts, Ashish Jha will continue his practice at the Providence VA Medical Center.

From India, Jha moved to Toronto, Canada in 1979 and then to the US in 1983. In 1992,  Jha graduated Magna Cum Laude from Columbia University with a BA in economics.

He received his MD from Harvard Medical School in 1997 and then trained as a resident in Internal Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.

He returned to Boston to complete his fellowship in General Medicine from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

In 2004, he completed his Master of Public Health degree at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2013.

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