Philip Harber, MD, MPH, adjunct professor of community, environment and policy at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, has been selected to receive the 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. This award is presented to an individual who has had a distinguished career in one or more disciplines of occupational medicine, environmental medicine and environmental health.
“I’m extraordinarily honored to be recognized in this field that seamlessly integrates public health and clinical medicine,” Dr. Harber said.
Dr. Harber is an occupational medicine researcher, clinician and consultant with a particular focus on occupational and environmental respiratory disease, respiratory protection and information systems. His work integrates public health, research, and clinical approaches in the areas of clinical decision analysis and informatics, workers compensation quality improvement, occupational health services organization and occupational ability/disability/impairment assessment.
“Working with great colleagues, we applied translational medicine, moving from clinical observations to laboratory and epidemiologic investigations,” Dr. Harber said of his many collaborators over the course of his career. “For example, respirators such as N95s are now widely used for long times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our work showed that effective protection depends on tolerating the increased temperature and facial pressure as well as breathing power to overcome the breathing resistance of the filter/mask.”
Dr. Harber joined the College of Public Health as a professor in 2011, and also has served as director of the International Collaborative Occupational Medicine Program and director of the UArizona Occupational Health Office, under the Office for Research, Innovation and Impact, where he oversaw the development of a five-point plan for occupational health and safety of university staff members.
Dr. Harber is a professor emeritus at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, where he has been professor of medicine and family medicine, chief of the Division of Occupational-Environmental Medicine and director of the occupational-environmental medicine residency. He has served as chair of the NIOSH/CDC Study Section Integrated Review Group, vice chair of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education’s residency review committee for preventive medicine, and board of directors of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary diseases and occupational-environmental medicine.