Debbie Salas Lopez

Debbie Salas Lopez
Gustav Heningburg Civic Fellow, 2003
Rutgers Newark -- IECME


Debbie Salas-Lopez, MD MPH, is the Chief, Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine at Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network in Allentown, Pennsylvania; formerly, she was the Chief of the Division of Academic Medicine, Geriatrics and Community Programs at UMDNJ, Newark, New Jersey.

Dr. Salas-Lopez was an undergraduate at Kean University and received an M.D. degree from New Jersey Medical School, remaining as a medical resident in their program. As Chief Medical Resident she received the Golden Apple Award for outstanding resident role model in 1999. In 2002, she received the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Humanism and Excellence in Teaching Award as a faculty member. Dr. Salas-Lopez was appointed Assistant Professor of Medicine and Medical Director of FOCUS Community Health Center in 1999. She is enrolled in the MPH program in Health Policy and Administration in the UMDNJ School of Public Health. Dr. Salas-Lopez recently served as Vice-Chair for Clinical Programs for the Department of Medicine in 2001-2002.

She joined the Rutgers University Institute on Ethnicity, Culture and the Modern Experience as a Gustav Heninburg Civic Fellow; was a visiting scholar at the Harvard Institute of Healthcare Policy; and completed a fellowship with “Redes en Accion,” a National Cancer Institute Initiative. She previously completed fellowships at the Association of American Colleges Health Services Research Institute and the Hispanic Serving Health Professions Schools Research Program. Dr. Salas-Lopez is a member of the Latino Health Advisory Committee, led the Latino Health Summit for the State of New Jersey in 2000, and participated in the African-American and Asian-American/Pacific Islander Health Summits. She served on the New Jersey Office of Minority and Multicultural Health Advisory Commission as a Chair, The Governor’s Hispanic Advisory Council Health Subcommittee, Senator Jon S. Corzine’s Public Health Taskforce, and the Rutgers Center for State Health Policy.

Dr. Salas-Lopez is also a community advocate and is a member of the Newark Public Library’ Board of Trustee since 1999. She has collaborated with many community-based organizations in issues related to education, economic development, and health care access. Dr. Salas-Lopez is developing a research agenda on Latino health and issues relating to access and the impact of culturally appropriate healthcare services. She has received funding to develop culturally appropriate educational programs that can help better serve our diverse populations.