“The voice of the patient really can help development efforts focus on the things that are most likely to be needed by patients, and hence more likely to be in their voices and minds when they interact with the FDA around the label, around the benefit-risk analysis.”
Dr. Julie L. Gerberding is Executive Vice President and Chief Patient Officer of Merck, where she is responsible for a broad portfolio focused on patient engagement, strategic communications, global public policy, population health and corporate responsibility. She addresses critical issues such as affordable access to therapies, health policies that promote and sustain innovation of new medicines and vaccines, and maternal health through the Merck for Mothers program, which aims to help meet the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal to reduce maternal mortality. She was the former President of Merck Vaccines.
Previously, Dr. Gerberding was Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where she led the agency response to more than 40 public health crises including anthrax, SARS, bird flu, food-borne outbreaks, and natural disasters. She joined the CDC as Director of the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion to develop the agency’s patient safety initiatives to prevent infections, antimicrobial resistance, and medical errors.
In addition to her role as Executive Sponsor of the Merck Women’s Network, Dr. Gerberding currently serves on the Boards of Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), Cerner Corporation, and the MSD Wellcome Trust Hilleman Laboratories, a non-profit that develops new technologies for developing countries. She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and a fellow of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the American College of Physicians.
Dr. Gerberding has received more than 50 awards and honors, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Distinguished Service Award for her leadership in responses to anthrax bioterrorism and the September 11, 2001 attacks, and eyeforpharma’s Lifetime Achievement Award. She was named one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People, Forbes’ 100 Most Powerful Women, and the Healthcare Businesswomen Association’s Woman of the Year.
Dr. Gerberding received her B.A. in chemistry biology and M.D. from Case Western Reserve University, and her M.P.H. from the University of California, Berkeley. She completed her internship and residency in internal medicine and fellowship in clinical pharmacology and infectious diseases at the University of California, San Francisco, where she served during the HIV/AIDS crisis and directed the Prevention Epicenter, and is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine. She is board certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases.