Washington, DC (October 19, 2023) - The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) awarded the annual Dr. Daniel S. Blumenthal Memorial Lecture to Camara Phyllis Jones, MD, MPH, PhD, a family physician, epidemiologist and past President of the American Public Health Association (APHA). Dr. Jones recently completed one year as a Leverhulme Visiting Professor in Global Health and Social Medicine at King’s College London. She is currently a Commissioner on the O’Neill-Lancet Commission on Racism, Structural Discrimination, and Global Health, as well as an Adjunct Professor at the Rollins School of Public Health and a Senior Fellow and Adjunct Associate Professor at the Morehouse School of Medicine. Dr. Jones presented a lecture on confronting racism denial and accepted the honor at an event held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. in front of an audience of key leaders in health and healthcare.

Dr. Jones’ work focuses on naming, measuring and addressing the impacts of racism on the health and well-being of our nation and the world. Her use of allegory has been lauded by many public health and medical institutions as well as academia as it illuminates topics that are otherwise difficult to understand or discuss.   

“Racism is a system of structuring opportunity and assigning value based on the social interpretation of how one looks, which unfairly disadvantages some individuals and communities, unfairly advantages other individuals and communities, and saps the strength of the whole society through the waste of human resources,” stated Dr. Jones. “Having worked with Dr. Blumenthal and learning from his example makes this award and honor even more meaningful. It is my hope that my work will inspire all of us in this country to use our voice and position to make an impact,” added Jones. 

Past ACPM President, Dr. Daniel S. Blumenthal, MD, MPH, FACPM, was a trailblazer and inspiration for many seeking to improve health equity. He began as a practicing physician in 1960’s Arkansas, eventually leading to a career at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and professor emeritus at the Morehouse School of Medicine. Dr. Blumenthal sought to use his influence, experience and skills as a preventive medicine trained physician to advance the health of all people, particularly those in marginalized communities whose healthcare needs were historically neglected.

“It is an honor to continue celebrating Dr. Blumenthal’s legacy – especially his commitment to advancing equity and justice as essential to healthy communities,” stated Donna Grande, CEO of ACPM. “The award honoring Dr. Jones’ work clearly aligns with Dr. Blumenthal’s legacy as it continues to guide important conversations and actions we each can take to use our position to dismantle structural racism and systems that hinder equity from being realized.”  

This year’s event included a reaction panel of experts from across the ecosystem of public health, medicine and advocacy to explore actions we each can take to dismantle racism and ensure health equity: Mirza Rahman MD, MPH, FACPM, President, American College of Preventive Medicine; Reed Tuckson, MD, FACPM, Managing Director, Tuckson Health Connections, LLC; Helen Burstin, MD, MPH, MACP, Chief Executive Officer, Council of Medical Specialty Societies; Neal Kohatsu, MD, MPH, FACPM, Health Strategist, Center for Healthcare Policy and Research at the University of California, Davis;  and Tochi Iroku-Malize, MD, MPH, MBA, President, American Academy of Family Physicians.  View current and past Daniel S. Blumenthal lectures on the ACPM YouTube page.

About the American College of Preventive Medicine
The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) is a professional medical society of approximately 2,000 physicians dedicated to improving the health and quality of life of individuals, families, communities and populations through disease prevention and health promotion.
For more information, visit www.acpm.org
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