Dr. Howard Koh is Professor of the Practice of Public Health Leadership at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He has previously served as the 14th Assistant Secretary for Health for the US Department of Health and Human Services (2009-2014) after being nominated by President Barack Obama, and as Commissioner of Public Health for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (1997-2003) after being appointed by Governor William Weld.
Dr. Koh is a co-investigator on the CHOICES project. This project is focused on understanding and modeling the cost-effectiveness of interventions that can improve children’s nutrition and physical activity and reduce the prevalence of obesity, which includes modeling work, evidence reviews, and simulation modeling of the cost-effectiveness of a wide variety of interventions, from restaurant calorie menu labeling to sugar sweetened beverage excise taxes. Results from this work should begin to provide researchers and policymakers with both methods and data to use in deciding on the “best value for money” in interventions to reduce obesity prevalence in children and adults in the United States. Dr. Koh contributes to development of the tools, products and strategies to engage public state health officials in learning about cost-effectiveness analysis, the CHOICES framework and model and use of cost-effectiveness analysis for decision making.
A graduate of Yale College and the Yale University School of Medicine, Dr. Koh trained at Boston City Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, held major academic positions at Boston University and Harvard University, published more than 250 articles in the medical and public health literature, and has received over 70 awards for accomplishments in public health, as well as four honorary degrees.