Dr. Aasim Padela is the Director of the Initiative on Islam and Medicine, Associate Professor of Medicine in the Section of Emergency Medicine, and a faculty member at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics at the University of Chicago.
Dr. Padela holds an MD from Weill Cornell Medical College, completed residency in emergency medicine at the University of Rochester, and received an MS in Healthcare Research from the University of Michigan. His Islamic studies expertise comes via a BS in Classical Arabic from the University of Rochester, seminary studies during his formative years, and continued tutorials with Islamic authorities.
Dr. Padela is a clinician-researcher and bioethicist whose scholarship lies at the intersection of community health and religion. He utilizes diverse methodologies from health services research, religious studies, and comparative ethics to examine the encounter of Islam with contemporary biomedicine through the lives of Muslim patients and clinicians, and in the scholarly writings of Islamic authorities. Through systematic research and strategic interventions, he seeks (1) to improve American Muslim health outcomes and healthcare experiences, and (2) to construct a multidisciplinary field of Islamic bioethics.
As a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar from 2008-2011 he developed a community-based research methodology to study and intervene upon American Muslim health disparities. In 2010, as a Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Centre of Islamic Studies he studied Islamic moral and theological frameworks, and from 2013 to 2015 as a Templeton Foundation Scholar he led a national survey of Muslim physicians’ bioethical attitudes and professional experiences. His current areas of research in cancer screening, end-of-life care, neuroscience and theology are funded by the Templeton Foundation and the American Cancer Society.
MS, Healthcare Research, University of Michigan; MD, Weill Cornell Medical College; BS, Biomedical Engineering, University of Rochester; BA, Classical Arabic & Literature, University of Rochester
Killawi, A, Heisler, M., Hamid, H., and Padela, AI.2015. Using Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) for Health Research in American Muslim Mosque Communities. Progress in Community Health Partnerships. 9:65-74
Padela, AI. and Heisler, M. 2010. The Association of Perceived Abuse and Discrimination After September 11, 2001, With Psychological Distress, Level of Happiness, and Health Status Among Arab Americans. American Journal of Public Health 100:284-91. Epub 2009.
Ezenkwele, U., Roodsari GS., and Padela, AI. 2016 Religio-cultural Considerations When Providing Health Care to American Muslims: In Diversity and Inclusion in Quality Patient Care eds. M.L. Martin, S.L Heron, L. Moreno-Walton, and A. W. Jones. Springer International.