Samuel D. Towne, Ph.D., MPH, CPH, FAAHB

Assistant Professor

Global Health Management and Informatics

Office: DPAC Suite 401

Phone: 407-823-2296

Email

Professional Summary

Dr. Towne’s major research focus includes: 1) Social and Structural Determinants of Health Disparities (e.g., socioeconomic, minority, and rural health inequities, the intersection of health and place); 2) Aging; and 3) Global Health.

His work spans studies focused on public health (e.g., policy-relevant issues) in the US and abroad related to health disparities. He is a central member of several cross-disciplinary teams involving public health (e.g., health policy), public affairs, urban planning, medicine, geography, and nursing seeking to tackle problems from multiple social ecological levels.

Dr. Towne’s primary faculty appointment is in the School of Global Health Management and Informatics with a joint appointment with the Disability, Aging, and Technology Cluster at the University of Central Florida. He is also a faculty associate with the Center for Population Health and Aging and the Southwest Rural Health Research Center both at Texas A&M University. He also holds an adjunct faculty position in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at Texas A&M University.

He is the recipient of multiple national awards including the Judy K. Black Early Career Research Award from AAHB and has led or co-authored 75 peer-reviewed scientific articles published in national and international journals and also authored more than 100 refereed conference presentations at national or international scientific conferences. He was recently named a Fellow by AAHB in recognition of significant contributions to the field.

Office Hours

Tuesday: 12 pm – 1:30 pm
Thursday: 11:45 am – 3:15 pm

Education

Postdoctoral Training, Health Disparities and Aging Research, School of Public Health, Texas A&M University Health Science Center

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Health Services Policy and Management, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina

Master of Public Health (MPH), Health Promotion and Health Education, Brooks College of Health, University of North Florida

Bachelor of Science (BS), Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences, University of North Florida

Areas of Expertise

  • Health Services Research
  • Health Policy
  • Medical Geography

Research Interests

  • Social and Structural Determinants of Health Disparities
  • Aging
  • Global Health

Recent Honors and Awards

Federal Training

  • Butler-Williams Scholars Program (formerly: Summer Institute on Aging Research).
    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. National Institutes of Health. National Institute on Aging. NIH Campus, Bethesda, MD. (2018 Class; July 30 – August 3, 2018)

Federal Awards

  • Recipient. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program: Health Disparities Research Award 2018 – 2019. Research Project: Rural and Minority Aging Research
    Funding Awarded: $35,000
  • Recipient. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program: Health Disparities Research Award 2015 – 2017. Research Project: Rural and Minority Aging Research
    Funding Awarded: $66,187.99

Non-Federal Awards & Fellowships

  • Fellow. Fellow American Academy of Health Behavior (FAAHB). 2020-current.
  • Recipient. 2017 Judy K. Black Early Career Research Award. American Academy of Health Behavior.
  • Recipient. 2016 Texas A&M Health Science Center, School of Public Health, Faculty Best Paper AwardStudy: Geographic variations in access and utilization of cancer screening services: Examining disparities among American Indian and Alaska Native Elders.

Recent Publications

Towne SD Jr, Liu X*, Li R, Smith ML, Maddock JE, Tan A, Hayek S, Zelber-Sagi S, Jiang X, Ruan H, Yuan Z. (2021). Social and Structural Determinants of Health Inequities: Socioeconomic, Transportation-Related, and Provincial-Level Indicators of Cost-Related Forgone Hospital Care in China. International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health. 2021, 18, 6113. doi.org Available at: doi.org  +international collaboration *current/former student

Towne SD Jr, Yeary K, Narcisse MR, Long C, Bursac Z, Totaram R*, Rodriguez E, McElfish P. (2020). Inequities in access to medical care among adults diagnosed with diabetes: Comparisons between the US Population and a sample of US-residing Marshallese Islanders. [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jun 11]. 2020;10.1007/s40615-020-00791-x. doi:10.1007/s40615-020-00791-x. Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. Available at: pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov *current/former student

Ng BP, LaManna JB, Towne SD Jr, Peach BC, He Q, Park C. (2020). Factors Associated With Avoiding Health Care Among Community-Dwelling Medicare Beneficiaries With Type 2 Diabetes. 2020 Oct 15;17:E128. doi: 10.5888/pcd17.200148. PMID: 33059795; PMCID: PMC7587306. Preventing Chronic Disease.  Available at: pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Towne SD Jr, Smith ML, Li Y, Dowdy D, Ahn S, Lee S*, Yoshikawa A*, Jiang L. (2020). A multi-level analyses of charges and cost of fall-related hospitalizations among older adults: Individual, hospital, and geospatial variation. Journal of Aging & Social Policy. 2020 Mar 21:1-22. doi: 10.1080/08959420.2020.1740639. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 32202228. Available at: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov *current/former student

Zhou Z, Lin C, Ma J, Towne SD Jr, Han Y, Fang Y. (2019). The Association of Social Isolation on the Risk of Stroke among Middle-aged and Older Adults in China. American Journal of Epidemiology. 2019 May 31. pii: kwz099. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwz099. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 31150041. Available at: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Towne SD Jr, Smith ML, Xu M, Lee S*, Sharma S, Smith D, Li Y, Fucci Y, Ory MG. (2019). Trends in Geospatial Drivers of Fall-related Hospitalizations and Asset Mapping of Fall Prevention Interventions for Vulnerable Older Adults. Journal of Aging and Health. 2019 Jan 7:898264318822381. doi: 10.1177/0898264318822381. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 30614341. Available at: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov   *current/former student

Funded Projects (selected)

Principal Investigator. Center for Population Health and Aging (CPHA), Texas A&M University. Identifying Social and Structural Determinants of Health Disparities among atRisk Populations.

Co-Investigator. National Institutes of Health (NIH)-R01. Fighting Obesity by Reinventing Public Transportation: A Natural Experiment.

Co-Investigator. National Cancer Institute of NIH—R01. Physical Activity Impacts of a Planned Activity-Friendly Community: The What, Where, When and Why of Environmental Approaches to Obesity Prevention.

Co-Investigator. National Institutes of Health (NIH)-Administrative Supplement: Dementia-Friendly Communities to Promote Active Living in Persons with AD/ADRD. (Parent Grant: Physical Activity Impacts of a Planned Activity-Friendly Community: The What, Where, When and Why of Environmental Approaches to Obesity Prevention).

 

Professional Organizations

  • American Public Health Association
  • American Academy of Health Behavior
  • Cancer Alliance of Texas
  • Gerontological Society of America
  • Institute for Healthcare Improvement
  • Health Disparities, Education, Awareness, Research & Training Consortium (HDEART) Health Equity Scholars & Alumni Network
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