HHS Secretary Announces Senate Confirmation of Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response

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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced today that the United States Senate unanimously confirmed Dr. Nicole Lurie as the next Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at HHS. Dr. Lurie, an internationally recognized leader in public health, most recently served as co-director of the RAND Corporation Center for Domestic and International Health Security, senior natural scientist and professor of policy analysis at the RAND Corporation.

Dr. Lurie has spent the last several years working with HHS, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and state and local health departments on pandemic influenza preparedness and other public health issues.  Previously, she served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Health at HHS. She has a long history in the health services research field, primarily in the areas of access to and quality of care, managed care, mental health, prevention, public health infrastructure and preparedness and health disparities.

"Dr. Lurie brings a wealth of experience to HHS at a critical time for our nation," said Secretary Sebelius. "Her knowledge and expertise will be essential to ASPR and to the entire Department as we continue to develop and implement an action plan for a coordinated national response to the H1N1 virus."

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) was established under the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act of 2006 to improve the nation's preparedness and response to natural and man-made disasters. The ASPR serves as the Secretary's principal advisory staff on matters related to bioterrorism and other public health emergencies such as pandemic influenza. ASPR also coordinates interagency activities between HHS, other federal agencies, state, tribal, territorial, and local officials responsible for emergency preparedness and response.

A brief biography is included below:

In addition to serving as Senior Natural Scientist and the Paul O' Neill Alcoa Professor of Health Policy at the RAND Corporation, she directed RAND's public health and preparedness work as well as RAND's Center for Population Health and Health Disparities. She has previously served in federal government, as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Health in the U.S Department of Health and Human Services; in state government, as Medical Advisor to the Commissioner at the Minnesota Department of Health; and in academia, as Professor in the University of Minnesota Schools of Medicine and Public Health.

Dr. Lurie attended college and medical school at the University of Pennsylvania, and completed her residency and MSPH at UCLA, where she was also a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar. She served as Senior Editor for Health Services Research, on editorial boards and as a reviewer for numerous journals. She has also served on the council and was President of the Society of General Internal Medicine, on the board of directors for the Academy of Health Services Research, and on multiple other national committees.

She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the AHSR Young Investigator Award, the Nellie Westerman Prize for Research in Ethics, the Heroine in Health Care Award, the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine's Distinguished Alumni Award, and is a member of the Institute of Medicine.

Dr. Lurie continues to practice clinical medicine in the health care safety net in Washington, DC.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 July 2009 12:53