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Catherine Wetmore Gillespie, MPH PhD

Senior Health Services Research Advisor

Catherine Wetmore Gillespie, MPH PhD

Catherine Wetmore Gillespie, MPH PhD

Areas of Expertise

Epidemiology, Public health, Prevention, Health disparities, Immunization, Obesity, Physical activity


Catherine Wetmore Gillespie plays a key role on the Health Team in AARP’s Public Policy Institute, conducting health services research as part of the Optum Labs collaborative. She has extensive experience in the design, implementation, and analysis of observational and
experimental investigations, and she has published widely in the peer-reviewed literature on a diverse range of topics, including chronic disease and risk-factor surveillance, barriers to immunization, delivery, and the epidemiology of sexually transmitted infections.

Kate held joint appointments as an assistant professor in both the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and the Department of Pediatrics at the George Washington University. As a faculty epidemiologist and biostatistician at the Children’s National Health
System, she codirected the design, epidemiology, and biostatistics component of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute at Children’s National, where she made significant contributions to an array of translational science studies. From 2010 to 2012, Kate was a
senior fellow at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation in Seattle, where she played a major role in the design and implementation of a number of large-scale efforts to measure variations in health care delivery, constraints, and associated health outcomes at national,
subnational, and local levels in the United States and abroad.

Kate received a BA in anthropology from Yale University and MPH and PhD degrees in epidemiology from the University of Washington.

Selected Publications

G. A. Roth, C. W. Gillespie, A. A. Mokdad, D. D. Shen, D. W. Fleming, A. Stergachis, C. J. Murray, and A. H. Mokdad, “Aspirin Use and Knowledge in the Community: A Population and Health Facility–based Survey for Measuring Local Health System Performance,” BMC Cardiovascular Disorders 14, no. 1 (2014): 16. PMID: 24507089. PMCID: PMC3922250.

L. E. Manhart, C. W. Gillespie, M. S. Lowens, C. Khosropour, D. V. Colombara, M. R. Golden, N. R. Hakhu, et al., “Standard Treatment Regimens for Nongonococcal Urethritis Have Similar but Declining Cure Rates: A Randomized Controlled Trial,” Clinical Infectious Diseases 56, no. 7 (2013): 934–42. PMID: 23223595. PMCID: PMC3588116.

A. H. Mokdad, M. C. Gagnier, K. E. Colson, P. Zúñiga-Brenes, D. Ríos-Zertuche, A. Haakenstad, E. B. Palmisano, et al., “Health and Wealth in Mesoamerica: Findings from Salud Mesoamerica 2015,” BMC Medicine 13, no. 1 (2015): 154. PMID: 26170012.

C. M. Wetmore and A. H. Mokdad, “In Denial: Misperceptions of Weight Change among Adults in the United States,” Preventive Medicine 55, no. 2 (2012): 93-100. PMID: 22781370.