Seth A. Berkowitz, MD, MPH, assistant professor in the division of general medicine and clinical epidemiology, has received the Society of General Internal Medicine 2021 Outstanding Junior Investigator of the Year Award. The award provides national recognition to junior investigators for their early career achievements and overall body of work that has made a national impact on generalist research.
“This is an incredibly competitive award as the Society of General Internal Medicine has produced some of the biggest luminaries in health services and health policy research,” said Darren DeWalt, MD, MPH, chief of the division of general medicine.
Berkowitz’s research seeks to advance health equity, and he has conducted a number of studies on health-related social needs and their association with health outcomes. This work includes studying interventions to address these needs in clinical care—such as by using medically-tailored meals for individuals with diabetes and food insecurity. He has also proposed the use of cash benchmarking to better study programs aimed at addressing health-related social needs. Most recently, he studied how unemployment insurance programs may help address health-related social needs for those who have lost jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Seth is recognized across the country for his work on interventions to address health-related social needs. He has influenced the design of Medicaid programs in both Massachusetts and North Carolina. His testimony at a U.S. Senate hearing influenced a proposed bill to lessen the burden on older adults to access nutrition support programs. His research is rigorous, and he has translated it directly to health policy. I cannot think of a more deserving investigator.”
The Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) is a medical society of primary care and internal medicine physicians and trainees. The society’s 3,000 members teach medical students, residents, and fellows how to care for patients, while also conducting research that improves primary care, preventative measures, and medical treatments for patients. SGIM strives to be a professional home for innovators and scholars in academic general internal medicine.