Asian Society of Lifestyle Medicine

Erica Frank, MD, MPH, FACPM

Erica Frank, MD, MPH, FACPM is a Professor and Canada Research Chair in Preventive Medicine and Population Health at the University of British Columbia, and the Founder and President of www.NextGenU.org, now used in over 100 countries as the world’s first free university.

Following a transitional internship at the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Frank was residency (Yale, 1990) and fellowship (Stanford, 1993) trained (and also board certified) in preventive medicine.  Until 2006, she was a tenured Professor, Vice Chair, and Division Director (Preventive Medicine) in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. She also directed Emory’s Preventive Medicine Residency Program, and had a clinical practice in cholesterol management. 

In 2001, Dr. Frank founded NextGenU.org, the world’s first portal to free, accredited, higher education. Starting with a focus in the health sciences, NextGenU.org partners with leading universities, professional societies, and government organizations including the U.S. CDC, World Bank, and the World Health Organization. All NextGenU courses are competency-based, and include a web-based global peer community of practice, and local, skills-based mentorships. NextGenU.org’s accredited partners give learners credit for this training (or institutions can adopt them and use them with their students), all (for the first time ever) for free, and without advertisements.  NextGenU launched its first full course (Emergency Medicine) in March 2012; NextGenU’s pilot tests perform comparably to or better than that of traditional American schooling of physicians and other health workers.  

Dr. Frank has been Principal Investigator of four national studies of the relationship between physicians’ personal and clinical prevention habits:  (1) the Women Physicians’ Health Study, a questionnaire-based study of 4,501 U.S. women M.D.s, and the first large study of their personal and professional characteristics, yielding more than fifty publications; (2) a similar study to WPHS, the Canadian Physicians’ Health Study; (3) the “Healthy Doc = Healthy Patient” project, a 17 U.S. medical school intervention study showing the positive effect of encouraging medical students’ healthy behaviors on their personal and clinical prevention habits; and (4) a study of the Healthy Doc = Healthy Patient link through the electronic medical records of 1.9 million Israeli patients’ and their 1,500 physicians.  She has traveled in over 60 countries, and has published over 140 articles (including four first-authored JAMA publications).

Dr. Frank has considerable media and health education experience.  She has been the Co-Editor in Chief of the journal Preventive Medicine (1994-1999), the Editor of the student component of JAMA, and has served on the editorial boards of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, and the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine.  She has written for Vogue magazine, and was the health reporter for the central Georgia ABC affiliate, a medical editor for Lifetime Medical Television, and a health reporter for Medical News Network.  Dr. Frank is also an active volunteer and environmentalist, including being Past President (2008) of Physicians for Social Responsibility, a thrice-elected city councilor (2007-2013), and the codesigner and co-owner of the only energy independent home in Georgia and of two cohousing communities.

She has received a number of awards for her work, including the AMA/Pettis Award (outstanding U.S. medical student communicator), the American College of Preventive Medicine’s (ACPM’s) “Rising Star Award” (received the first year the award was offered), ACPM’s Best Scientific Presentation and Distinguished Service awards, AOA (medical honor society) status, and the outstanding alumnus award from Princeton Day School and Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health.

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Asian Society of Lifestyle Medicine