Previously, Dr. Wen served as the Health Commissioner for the City of Baltimore, where she led the nation’s oldest continuously operating health department in the U.S. to fight the opioid epidemic, treat violence and racism as public health issues, and improve maternal and child health. She has also been the Director of Patient-Centered Care Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University; president of the Planned Parenthood, where she worked to reposition the organization as a mainstream healthcare entity that delivers comprehensive care for women and families; and a consultant with the World Health Organization and China Medical Board.
Currently, she serves on the Advisory Boards of two health innovation companies and on the Board of the Baltimore Community Foundation. She is also a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and a Distinguished Fellow at the Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity. She was the Board Chair of Behavioral Health System Baltimore for four years and has served on more than ten nonprofit and advisory boards.
Dr. Wen earned her medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine and her master’s degrees at the University of Oxford, where she was a Rhodes Scholar. She completed her residency training at Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. The author of the dozens of scientific articles and the critically-acclaimed book, When Doctors Don’t Listen, she has given six TEDx and TEDMED talks.
She has received recognition as Modern Healthcare’s 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders and Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare; American Public Health Association’s highest award for local public health work; Governing’s Public Officials of the Year; and World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders. In 2019, Dr. Wen was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People.
When she is not working, she is spending time with her nearly three-year old son, Eli, and her newborn baby, Isabelle.
- COVID-19 and the Future of Healthcare
Dr. Wen is one of the nation’s leading experts in the COVID-19 pandemic, called upon for her expertise by Congress, state and local governments, businesses, schools/universities, and scientific organizations. She can provide an update on the state of the coronavirus outbreak that is tailored to your specific audience: for example, what are possible trajectories of the pandemic and the impact on businesses? What are the lessons learned for cities and for public health preparedness? She also speaks to the future of medicine and healthcare: How will the outcome of the 2020 elections change the landscape of healthcare delivery? What are the major trends in payment reform, health workforce, and medical technology, and how will they, in the COVID-19 era, shape the future of medicine and public health?
- Racial Disparities in Health
Dr. Wen is a leading national expert on health disparities. During the COVID-19 crisis, she was asked to testify twice to the U.S. House of Representatives on the unequal impact of the pandemic on communities of color. While she served as Baltimore’s health commissioner, she reconfigured the agency to specifically focus on health equity and was among the first leaders to declare racism as a public health crisis. She can speak from the lens of current events on how COVID-19 has unmasked existing disparities and specifically focus on innovative solutions that reduce disparities and improve health in the short-term, as well as long-term efforts to address structural inequities.