MARIA ABUNTO, MD, MPH (MMPH '16) recently assumed a new position with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland after completing her studies at Pitt Public Health.
A medical doctor with years of experience in basic science and clinical research, Abunto pursued the MMPH and global health programs at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health. Her professional objectives were to augment clinical training and to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to serve in a public health leadership position.
Her research work involved establishing a global research methods “help desk” and website, including collecting data and editing research proposals for WHO and Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office. She created a Philippines Help Desk webpage and translated articles, while networking with scientists worldwide. As scientific research journal editor for the Central Asian Journal of Global Health, she reviews international research papers in public health and medicine.
As an IRB member at The Children’s Institute, Abunto worked to safeguard research procedures and interventions involving children and vulnerable subjects, functioning as a primary reviewer of new protocol applications and proposed revisions. Abunto's internship in community health marked an opportunity to engage with a medically underserved community and to provide health education and disease prevention at the community level.