The Department of Environmental Medicine and Public Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has six active divisions.
Our members of the Division of Biostatistics collaborate with investigators throughout the Mount Sinai Health System in the conduct of research projects, and they pursue their own research on statistical methodology. They design studies, monitor data, and conduct analysis. Many faculty engage our biostatisticians to collaborate on grant applications. Faculty in the Division are course directors for the various courses in biostatistics that are part of the core curriculum in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and core curriculum in the Master of Public Health program.
The Division of Environmental Health is the academic home for multiple investigators who study the health impact of environmental chemicals on reproductive, respiratory, and neurological health as well as children’s development. Our ultimate goal is protection of the public's health by understanding, elucidating, and preventing diseases that arise from environmental exposures. We have built a large and successful program in children’s environmental health, established a state-of-the-art environmental sciences laboratory, and in the coming years we will initiate new studies, while continuing to expand our training programs to produce the next generation of environmental health researchers. The Division of Environmental Health is directed by Manish Arora, PhD, who is also Vice Chairman of the Department.
The Division has a diverse research portfolio. Particularly notable has been the historic research we have undertaken on the carcinogenic risks of asbestos. This research, which was directed for more than 25 years by the late Professor Irving J. Selikoff, MD, documented etiologic associations between asbestos, lung cancer, malignant mesothelioma, and gastrointestinal cancer. We currently conduct research studies on child development and assess the risks from exposure to a broad range of chemicals such as pesticides, environmental endocrine disrupting chemicals, metals, and air pollution. This work involves studies that take place in the United States (New York City, Boston, Rochester, Seattle, Minnesota, and Oklahoma), as well as internationally (Italy, Sweden, Mexico, and Bangladesh). Our division studies neurodevelopment, respiratory health, reproductive health, puberty, and obesity.
The Division of Environmental Health also works closely with department investigators specializing in Community Outreach and Education as part of our commitment to inform and improve the health of underserved neighborhoods. The Program includes a team of faculty who develop educational activities for students of all levels, establishes collaborations with community-based organizations, provides technical expertise for workers and policy makers, and assesses issues of environmental justice in minority communities.
In 2014, the Senator Frank R. Lautenberg Environmental Health Sciences Laboratory, a state-of-the-art facility, opened for scientific research. Within this sophisticated laboratory, investigators conduct research to discover the environmental causes of diseases in children while developing new methods to measure and assess chemical exposure. The laboratory is equipped with innovative technologies that enable the team at the Children’s Environmental Health Center (CEHC) to achieve quicker results, develop groundbreaking techniques to measure the timing of past chemical exposure, and advance new research studies. The Lautenberg Laboratory enables us to respond rapidly to communities and individuals concerned about potential exposures, and assist junior faculty in developing pilot studies on the health impact of chemicals in children.
Lauren Petrick, PhD
The Division of Preventive Medicine and Community Health’s mission is to prevent chronic and infectious disease and promote healthy lifestyles in the community that the Mount Sinai Health System serves. Our faculty are involved in many service oriented community projects, community coalitions, outreach, and health services research in East Harlem as well as at The Mount Sinai Hospital.
The division houses the General Preventive Medicine Residency Program with a specialized track in cancer prevention funded by the American Cancer Society and a track in Veteran Health funded by the Department of Veteran Affairs GME Enhancement: Educational Innovation Grant at James J. Peters Veterans Administration Medical Center. It is ACGME accredited for six residents.
The Preventive Medicine faculty participates as small-group leaders in many educational activities at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai; including small pre-clinical courses, clerkships for third-year medical students, and as mentors medical student research projects. The Division holds numerous leadership roles in the Graduate Program in Public Health; including Director, Track Leader in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, course directors of many courses and lecturers, and mentors of multiple masters’ theses.
The Division is committed to community-based research, both locally and abroad. Ongoing studies include evaluation of Green LEED-certified affordable housing on health and well-being, the impact of a home-based Maternal Outreach Program on high-risk pregnant women and children, and support services for women with a history of childhood trauma and HIV. Our international projects include implementation and evaluation of prevention programs in malaria, HIV, malnutrition, and teenage pregnancy.
We are also committed to improving the health and wellness of employees of The Mount Sinai Health System, having partnered with Human Resources to implement on-site tobacco cessation services, and food environment and health promotion. The Division faculty leads the Sustaining Mount Sinai Committee to promote sustainable strategies within the Mount Sinai Health System.
Mary Foley, PhD
The Division of Social Work and Behavioral Science, in partnership with the Mount Sinai Hospital Department of Social Work Services, is committed to being a transforming presence, an innovator, and an advocate in shaping the future of social healthcare through research, education, and practice. The Division faculty and staff collaborate with clinical and basic sciences departments throughout the Health System, and community social agencies including schools of social work in educating for tomorrow’s practice.
The major activities of the division are:
- Creating and evaluating programs designed to address the social determinants of health and enhance the health of individuals, families and communities
- Advancing and disseminating knowledge for effective practice
- Educating undergraduate and graduate medical students, social work, public health and behavioral science students, locally and globally
- Preventing and alleviating human suffering by providing services, grounded in empirical research, to individuals, families, groups and communities
The Division of International Health serves as a resource to facilitate the interaction between researchers at the Department of Environmental Medicine and Public Health and leaders in science and medicine around from the world.
Luz Claudio, PhD
The Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine is committed to preventing and treating occupational and environmental injury and illness through clinical services, education, and research. The Division’s groundbreaking history in identifying, treating, and preventing occupational-related illness has encompassed a multidisciplinary approach.