This site is being created by Susan J. Blalock, PhD, author of Making Meaning of Data in Pharmaceutical and Clinical Research. Dr. Blalock is a behavioral scientist with 30 years of experience conducting research in the area of patient and public health education. Her current research focuses on medication risk communication and the effect that risk perceptions have of health behavior and illness outcomes. Dr. Blalock recently completed a multi-site randomized controlled trial, funded by the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute, that evaluated two innovative patient education strategies designed to enhance patients’ ability to understand complex information concerning the risks and benefits of different treatment options for the management of rheumatoid arthritis. Currently, much of the research on risk communication focuses on how best to convey probabilistic information. Dr. Blalock’s research emphasizes the need for clear communication concerning risk management (e.g., importance of routine laboratory testing to identify potential problems early before irreversible harm occurs) as well. If you would like to see a copy of my curriculum vitae (resume), click HERE.
Dr. Distlerath is a health care industry leader who brings over three decades of experience in the global biopharmaceutical sector, with deep expertise in public policy, public affairs, and strategic alliances, especially in China, India and other the emerging markets. She most recently served as the Deputy Vice President of Advocacy and Strategic Alliances for the Pharmaceutical and Research Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), leading multi-stakeholder initiatives concerning counterfeit medicines, chronic disease, intellectual property protection, health technology assessment, and drug pricing and reimbursement policies. Previously, Dr. Distlerath was Senior Vice President and head of the global health practice at APCO Worldwide, Vice President of Corporate Public Affairs and Global Health Policy at Merck & Co., Inc., and President of the Merck Company Foundation.
Dr. Distlerath is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Economic Club of Washington, D.C., a board member of the National Academy of Certified Care Managers, and on the advisory boards for the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease and the Aging Life Care Association. She holds a B.S. in Medical Technology from the University of Michigan, a Ph.D. in Environmental Health/Toxicology from the University of Cincinnati, a Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Molecular Biochemistry from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, and a J.D. from Rutgers University Law School.