Health Equity Researcher Takes Reins as Chair of Health Management and Policy Department
Rhonda BeLue, PhD, joined the faculty of Saint Louis University as professor and chair of the Health Management and Policy department at the College for Public Health and Social Justice on July 1, 2017.
She brings with her a deep dedications and understanding of issues related to health care quality and equity. Her years of study regarding access to care as they relate to social issues include more than 70 published works and more than a decade of academic leadership.
BeLue feels SLU is the right place for her to proactively make a positive impact on her field of study and her students.
"I chose Saint Louis University because of its history and deep commitment to the relationship between health care and social justice," notes BeLue. "I was drawn not only to its reputation for academic leadership in health care issues, but specifically to its mission."
After receiving her bachelor's at the University of New Mexico, BeLue earned both a master's and a doctorate degrees at Cornell University. Her interest in access to quality health care services began when she was young, growing up with a father who was a double amputee as a result of his service in the Vietnam War. She and her family spent many years maneuvering through the Veterans Affairs system, working to get him the best possible care within a federally-funded organization that was often fraught with barriers.
BeLue was awarded Fulbright scholarship to pursue her study of social issues that prevent effective health management of non-communicable chronic diseases in Senegal, an interest that she has pursued for more than a decade. Every summer, she brings her students to experience and research public health topics in the region.
BeLue arrived at Saint Louis University after 12 years on faculty at Pennsylvania State University and is thrilled to be a part of the community. "St. Louis provides unlimited opportunities to be active. This a great city to be able to teach because of the strong medical schools and hospitals here. We have a very vibrant community from which to draw a wealth of expertise."
BeLue sees the program at Saint Louis University, with its outstanding reputation, ready to bring its decades of expertise to the forefront of academic leadership in health care. "We have an incredibly energetic and devoted faculty, and we are helping to shape the future of health care by preparing its leaders for challenges they will face now and for decades into the future. This is a thrilling time for studying health care and social justice."