HIV Surveillance Manager, Sexual Health and Harm Reduction Service, Oklahoma State Health Department
The road to public health began in nursing for Kaitlin McGrew. “I loved working directly with people, but I was drawn to the idea of quantifying diseases in populations and shining a light on health disparities to guide clinical and policy decisions. I felt I could make a larger impact on the health of Oklahomans by pursuing a degree in epidemiology.”
As a student, McGrew was involved in several multidisciplinary projects aimed at eliminating Hepatitis C in the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. McGrew believes the challenging academic environment and opportunities to collaborate and lead afforded to her at the college prepared her to be an independent researcher. “The diverse teaching and research experiences were invaluable through my progression in the doctoral program,” she said. “The Hudson Fellowship led to more flexibility in my research and training opportunities to gain analytic skills.” Her doctoral research focused on quantifying and adjusting for misclassification of injection drug use (IDU) status using administrative health data, with an aim to produce more accurate estimates of the impact of IDU on infectious morbidity and healthcare use.
McGrew currently serves as the HIV Surveillance Manager at the Oklahoma State Department of Health, assisting with Ending the HIV Epidemic efforts and working daily to reduce HIV-related health disparities in Oklahoma.