Dr. Martin F. Shapiro, professor of medicine and chief of the division of general internal medicine and health services research at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, has received the Herbert W. Nickens Award, recognizing his commitment to cultural diversity in medicine.
Shapiro received the award April 28 at the Society of General Internal Medicine's 30th annual meeting in Toronto.
"I am honored to receive this award, but it really is a recognition of the contributions of a remarkable group of scholars of diverse backgrounds, all of whom care passionately about making the health care system more just," Shapiro said. "It is very gratifying to be in a position that enables me to learn from them and work with them."
Shapiro is internationally recognized for his work on access to care, health disparities, and the care of patients with HIV and AIDS. He earned his M.D. at McGill University in Montreal. He completed his residency at Royal Victoria Hospital in Montreal and at UCLA, where he also earned a master of public health degree and a Ph.D. in history, the latter focusing on health care services in Portuguese Africa.
He joined the UCLA faculty in 1980 as assistant professor of medicine in the division of general internal medicine and health services research and was promoted to associate professor in 1986. He established UCLA's Primary Care Research Fellowship Program in 1988, directing it through 2003. Shapiro became chief of the division of general internal medicine and health services research in 1991, the same year he became associate director of the UCLA Clinical Scholars Program. He was promoted to full professor in 1992 and was appointed professor of health services in 2000.
Shapiro's work focuses on the equitable application of medical care and on health services research for HIV. He has been the principal investigator for the HIV Cost and Services Utilization Study, a $25 million national study of HIV care in the United States that developed the first probability sample cohort of the nation's HIV patients. This study documented many issues in HIV care, notably the pattern of dissemination of new therapies and the disparities in access to them. His work was recognized with an Article of the Year Award from Academy Health and the Policy Impact Award from the American Association for Public Opinion Research.
Other notable research by Dr. Shapiro includes studies of racial and socioeconomic disparities in life expectancy; the impact of co-payments on the use of necessary medical services; inequities in health among insured Americans; scientific misconduct in investigational drug trials; the quality and accuracy of pharmaceutical advertising; and the impact of violence on immigrants' mental health.
Shapiro is a member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians and is a past president of the Society of General Internal Medicine.