Doctors Speak Out

Four times a year, Doctors Speak Out—Georgetown University Medical Center's signature luncheon series—invites local residents to join leaders in the medical field to converse about advancements in biomedical science and the implications for medical practice.

Through this program, Georgetown scientists and physicians share their knowledge and insights on health issues of concern to our community, as well as the latest progress in their research. Past topics have included aging well, brain recovery after stroke, the complexity of breast cancer, and the challenges of treating Parkinson's disease.


Past Doctors Speak Out events

Women's Health Research: Making Strides in Diagnosis and Treatment

Women's Health Research: Making Strides in Diagnosis and Treatment

December 5, 2017

A conversation with Kristi D. Graves, PhD; Beth N. Peshkin, MS, CGC; and Kathryn L. Sandberg, PhD

A New Way to Fight Health Disparities

Georgetown University Health Justice Alliance: A New Way to Fight Health Disparities

September 13, 2017

The Georgetown University Health Justice Alliance is a medical-legal partnership launched by Georgetown’s Law and Medical Centers in 2016 to prepare future generations of lawyers, doctors, nurses and other health professionals work together to help promote health and well-being of vulnerable individuals and families in order to prevent legal crises that could have health effects and contribute to health disparities. Georgetown brings a commitment from both its law center and medical center to provide specialized education, practical experience and innovative solutions in pursuit of improved health and greater justice for the underserved for disadvantaged.


Vicki W. Girard, PhD, is Co-Director of the new Georgetown University Health Justice Alliance and a Professor of Legal Research and Writing at the Law Center. After graduating from the Law Center magna cum laude in 1987, Professor Girard worked at several firms in Washington D.C. and developed a specialty in representing cosmetic, pharmaceutical, and biotech companies in FDA-related proceedings and other regulatory and policy matters. From 1994 until joining the Law Center in 2003, Professor Girard was a member of the Food and Drug Law Practice Group at Hogan & Hartson (now Hogan Lovells). There she expanded her representation to include the blood and tissue industries, working extensively with groups such as the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the American Red Cross. While at Georgetown, Professor Girard has continued to pursue her interest in issues related to health care and food and drug law. Her faculty position has afforded her the opportunity to teach and mentor law students, and to pursue her interest in health related topics and how they interface with the legal system. School of Nursing & Health Studies.

Eileen S. Moore, MD, is the founding Medical Director of the new Georgetown University Health Justice Alliance. Dr. Moore completed her fellowship in Primary Care and Health Policy at Georgetown University in 2000 and has been on the faculty at the Georgetown University School of Medicine (GUSOM) since that time. She currently serves as the Associate Dean for Community Education and Advocacy at GUSOM and has a robust clinical practice in General Internal Medicine. Dr. Moore has a keen interest in progressive medical education and has dedicated much of her career to sharing her passion for access to care and quality of care for underserved and vulnerable populations with the next generation of doctors. Since 2007, Dr. Moore has served as the Medical Director for the Health Outreach to Youth and Adults (HOYA) Clinic, the first student-run free clinic in Washington D.C., located in the D.C. General Emergency Family Shelter. Since 2008, Dr. Moore has also directed the Health Justice Scholar (HJS) Track at GUSOM. The first program of its kind at the Medical Center, the HJS track is a longitudinal four-year curriculum that gives the next generation of physicians the didactic and practical experience to work at the intersection of advocacy and policy toward the achievement of health equity.

Christopher King, PhD, is the Director of Georgetown’s Master’s Program in Health Systems Administration and he provides academic and operational leadership of the program. As assistant professor, he teaches and contributes to scholarship on the creation of equitable systems of care within the context of national health reform goals. He works closely with public and private providers to more formally integrate social correlates of health in standards of patient care. Dr King is an active member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and a contributor to Healthcare Executive magazine. He has conducted health disparity and health equity presentations to national audiences. As a senior fellow of the Health Research & Educational Trust (HRET), Dr. King joins an esteemed group of national thought leaders dedicated to transforming health care through research and education. His national investigations on screening and barriers to care among cancer survivors by race and ethnicity were published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and the American Journal of Medical Quality. Dr. King is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and serves as an advisor for: the DC Department of Health State Innovation Model, Adventist HealthCare's Center for Health Equity and Wellness and the Maryland Governor’s Wellmobile Program. The Washington Business Journal has recognized him as one of the region’s top minority business leaders.

Oswald G. Reid, Jr., is a current student at Georgetown University School of Medicine and Health Justice Scholar.

Reaching the Global Community

Reaching the Global Community

May 24, 2017

Zika. SARS. Ebola. How could they affect you and your family? What is being done about these and other emerging global health threats?

Last year, the World Health Organization received 5,000 disease alerts every month. Due to our hyperconnected, interdependent world, pandemics spread faster than ever before, and doctors must think in a global context and have the tools to respond when a health crisis hits.

To help world leaders create systems to prevent, detect, and respond to public health emergencies, Georgetown University’s Center for Global Health Science and Security conducts original research in such areas as evaluating vulnerabilities in biosecurity and pandemic response capabilities, laboratory testing for priority diseases, the economic benefits of promoting health in the world’s poorest nations, and training in global health diplomacy.

The Center is focused on contributing to global pandemic preparedness and response for emerging infectious diseases—just one area of global health work at Georgetown University Medical Center. The Department of Internal Medicine is creating a global health track for residents at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital to ensure that the next generation of clinicians are fully informed and prepared to work on global health problems. Additionally, the newly established Center for Global Health and Quality (GHQ) will explore data driven solutions to policy challenges in global health.

There are no barriers to prevent diseases from spreading around the world, and to protect Americans, we must work with the global community. Our experts discussed the complexity of global health issue, the initiatives underway at Georgetown, and how we plan to help guide the critical effort to ensure pandemic preparedness, global health security, and domestic readiness and resilience.


Rebecca Katz, PhD, MPH, is an associate professor of International Health at Georgetown University Medical Center and co-director of the Center for Global Health Science and Security. Previously, she was a faculty member at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. Since 2007, she has focused her research on the implementation of the International Health Regulations, health diplomacy, and public health preparedness policy. Dr. Katz has worked on public health preparedness and global health security issues for over a decade, and has been an expert consultant with the U.S. Department of State since 2004, supporting the U.S. Government on the Biological Weapons Convention.

Susan C. Kim, JD, MPH, MBA, is the executive director of the Center for Global Health and Quality (GHQ) at Georgetown University Medical Center and an assistant research professor in the Department of Medicine. She is also a scholar with the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law. Trained in law, public health, and business, her research focuses on the role of law and policy in health. Her current and past projects include emergency (pandemic) preparedness, food safety regulation, global health governance, and infectious disease control, working with organizations such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of State, and World Health Organization.

Kacie Saulters, MD, is an assistant professor of Medicine at Georgetown University and director of the Global Health Track within the Department of Medicine at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, and practices within the Hospitalist Division at Georgetown University Medical Center. She had a concentration in Global Health during residency training in Internal Medicine at the University of Virginia, and completed her Certificate in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. She has specific clinical and research interest in global health education and the treatment of sepsis in resource-poor settings.

Health Challenges of Military Veterans

Exploring the Health Challenges Faced by Military Veterans

March 16, 2017

More than 21 million Americans have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. In addition to the physical and mental health concerns faced by all Americans, veterans face a range of complex health challenges related to their service, including Gulf War illness, traumatic brain injury, and post-traumatic stress disorder. With more than 150 hospitals and 800 community-based outpatient clinics, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs operates one of the largest health care systems in the world, serving 8.9 million veterans annually. However, critics charge that the VA offers substandard care, forcing patients to cope with unreasonable wait times to see a doctor.

Researchers at Georgetown have given hope to veterans and their loved ones by identifying physical evidence of Gulf War illness, a significant step towards determining how to diagnose the condition, making it more likely that those affected can receive the benefits and treatment they deserve. They have also studied ways to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in those affected by traumatic brain injury, explored techniques for coping with trauma, and led advanced medical research at the VA. With about 700 students who are either active duty or veterans, along with a Veterans’ Office, Veterans Initiative, and Student Veterans Association at Georgetown, faculty are also training the next generation of professionals in careers that will help veterans, including health care and health systems administration.

The panelists drew upon their diverse backgrounds in medicine, neuroscience, and psychiatry, and shared their insights on future directions for research in areas that affect veterans.


James Baraniuk, MD, is a professor with tenure in the Department of Medicine at Georgetown University, with a background in immunology and molecular biology. As director of the Pain and Fatigue Research Alliance, his team uses magnetic resonance imaging, cerebrospinal fluid analysis and other methods to define pathophysiological mechanisms in Gulf War illness, chronic fatigue syndrome, and other idiopathic pain conditions.

Mark Burns, PhD, is an associate professor in Neuroscience at Georgetown University Medical Center. He directs the Laboratory for Brain Injury and Dementia, whose goal is to understand how concussions disrupt the normal function of the brain, and the long-term events triggered by brain injury that can cause neurodegenerative diseases that cause dementia. He uses knowledge from human brain trauma patients, professional boxers, animal models, and cultured neuronal cells to answer how the brain responds to both concussions and severe brain injury.

Mary Ann Dutton, PhD, is professor and vice chair for Research in the Department of Psychiatry, Georgetown University Medical Center, and codirector of the Community Engagement and Research core of the Georgetown–Howard Universities Center for Clinical and Translational Science. Dr. Dutton’s research focuses on trauma and mental health, and she has received federal grants for longitudinal studies, randomized behavioral clinical trials involving mindfulness, and telehealth interventions.

Joel Kupersmith, MD, is a professor of Medicine at Georgetown University. As leader until 2013 of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs medical research program, his accomplishments included the unique Million Veteran Program genomics mega-database, pioneering research projects, and new clinical research methods. Dr. Kupersmith has served on the Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research, the NIH’s Council of the National Center for Advancement of Translational Science, and the Council of Science of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Members of the public who are interested in learning about the pioneering research being performed at Georgetown and its potential impact on their health are invited to attend. Contact us to be placed on the Doctors Speak Out luncheon series invitation list.

In addition, individuals interested in directly supporting the research discussed by our doctors can join Partners in Research to fund early-stage research on the diseases that matter most.

If you have questions or would like to get involved in Doctors Speak Out, please contact a member of our staff.

Click here for contact information.

Paula Frishman
Assistant Vice President for Advancement

Rosemarie Treanor Martini
Associate Director of Development

Maja Breznik
Senior Development Associate