Dr. Priya Balasubramaniam, Senior Public Health Scientist, Public Health Foundation of India, Director, PHFI Universal Health Initiative
Dr. Priya Balasubramaniam is a public health professional with over 20 years of experience in large scale implementation research, evaluation and program planning in academic, non-profit and government settings. Her interests and expertise are in the areas of urban health, universal health coverage, and health technology innovations directed at strengthening health systems in low and middle-income countries. She has a multi-disciplinary background and has assisted in shaping health policy in India, Southeast Asia, Mexico, Central Africa the United States and Canada with demonstrated success with field-based mandates as well as in strategic program development roles where she has applied research evidence and social entrepreneurship driven solutions to address inequities in healthcare delivery and access.
In her current position as Senior Public Health Scientist at the Public Health Foundation of India, she directs the Universal Health Coverage Initiative (www.uhcindia.org), one of India’s seminal health policy exercises on health governance and systems reform and co-authored the Government of India’s High Level Expert Group recommendations on universal health coverage as part of the country’s 12th Five Year Plan. She has recently co-founded the first of its kind ”Innovations for Universal Health Coverage Partnership” (www.uhcinnovations.com) with Amref Health Africa and the Institute of Development Studies, Sussex that leverages the transformational potential of disruptive low-cost health technologies to accelerate progress towards achieving Universal Health Coverage in low-and middle-income countries (LMIC) to benefit the most vulnerable populations.
Dr. Balasubramaniam’s other projects include developing a research agenda for Urban Health (spanning social innovation, health governance and public-private collaboration). She is currently editing India’s Urban Health Landscape report due in 2018. She also spearheads projects around health services delivery that includes a partnership with the Consortia of Affordable Technologies (CamTech) which mentors and seed-funds early stage social impact health innovations in Asia and Africa and the Grand Challenges Grant winner, the Biodiaspora Partnership that tracks and models infectious and vector borne disease through human movement patterns. Through her implementation research, active public outreach and sustained policy engagement, she has played a central role in advocating role of urban environments in the global movement towards universal healthcare and social equity to the attention of leaders and policymakers worldwide.
She has also been a frequent advisor on health systems and policy to numerous multi-bi lateral organisations including WHO, IDRC Canada, the European Commission, the World Bank, the Wellcome Trust, USAID, DfID, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Dr. Balasubramaniam has authored several reports, policy briefs as well as peer-reviewed publications over her career as both a clinician and researcher. She works closely with municipal and state governments and served on a taskforce on Primary Healthcare constituted Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India and is member of the Technical Review Groups on Urban Health constituted by the Ministry of Urban Development. She serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Health Governance, series editor- Globalization and Health and is regional editorial advisor of Oxford University Press’s Healthy Cities and Communities Encyclopedia.
She holds visiting faculty and fellowship positions at the National University of Singapore the Institute for Health System Innovation and Policy, Questrom School of Business, Boston University and the Keenan Research Centre, St. Michaels Hospital, Toronto Canada. Her academic background includes education and training in Public Policy and Administration from the John F Kennedy School of Government, International Health from the University of Texas Health Science Centre, Houston and in Dental Public Health and Dentistry from the University of Toronto, Texas and University of Madras, India