National Academy of Medicine

DC Public Health Case Challenge

Participants from the 2017 DC Public Health Case Challenge Prize-Winning Teams (American University, Georgetown University, George Washington University, and Howard University)

The DC Public Health Case Challenge aims to promote interdisciplinary, problem-based learning around a public health issue that faces the local Washington, DC, community.

Universities in the DC area form teams consisting of five to six members from at least three disciplines. Teams are given a case, written by students from the participating universities, that provides background information on a local public health problem. Teams have a limited amount of time to devise a comprehensive intervention, which they present to an expert panel of judges.

Teams are judged on the interdisciplinary nature of their response, feasibility of implementation, creativity, and practicality.

Each year a topic for the case is chosen that is relevant in the local DC area and also has broader domestic and global resonance.

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2017 Case: Lead and Adverse Childhood Experiences: Neurological and Behavioral Consequences for Youth in the District of Columbia

On October 13, 2017,  multi-disciplinary teams of undergraduate and graduate students from local universities competed at the National Academy of Sciences building to present their solutions to the 2017 Case Challenge. The 2017 judges included:

  • Al McGartland, Ph.D., Director, National Center for Environmental Economics, Chief Economist, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; member of the National Academies’ Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research, and Medicine
  • Torey Mack, M.D., Chief, Family Health Bureau, Community Health Administration, DC Department of Health
  • Phyllis D. Meadows, Ph.D., RN, MSN, Senior Fellow, Health Program, The Kresge Foundation; member of the National Academies’ Roundtable on Population Health Improvement
  • Miguel A. Paniagua, M.D., FACP, FCPP, MHPE (cand.), Medical Advisor, Test Development Services, National Board of Medical Examiners; member of the National Academies’ Global Forum on Innovation in Health Professional Education
  • Satira S. Streeter, Ph.D., Founder and Executive Director, Ascensions Psychological and Community Services, Inc.
  • Deborah Klein Walker, Ed.D., President, Global Alliance for Behavioral Health and Social Justice; member of the National Academies’ Forum on Promoting Children’s Cognitive, Affective, and Behavioral Health 

Informational webinar | Case Challenge | Winning Proposal | Follow-Up Event

2016 Case: The Changing American City and Implications for Health and Well-Being of Vulnerable Populations

Case Challenge | Winning Proposal | Summary

2015 Case: Supporting Mental Health in Older Veterans

Case Challenge  | Winning Proposal | SummaryFollow-Up Event

2014 Case: Supporting Adult Involvement in Adolescent Health and Education

Case Challenge | Winning Proposal | SummaryFollow-Up Event

2013 Case: Violence Affecting LGBT Youth

Case Challenge | Winning Proposal | Summary | Follow-Up Event


The DC Public Health Case Challenge is co-sponsored by the National Academy of Medicine’s Kellogg Health of the Public Fund and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Roundtable on Population Health Improvement, with support from the Global Forum on Innovation in Health Professional Education.  The Case Challenge is modeled on Emory University’s Global Health Case Competition, and was born when representatives from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and Georgetown University met at Emory’s competition in March 2013.

For more information, contact Amy Geller, Senior Program Officer, at