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David Smith, PhD

David Barton Smith

Research Professor
Health Management and Policy
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BA, Social Science, Michigan State University; MA, Social Sciences, Michigan State University; PhD, Medical Care Organization, University of Michigan


David Barton Smith is Emeritus Professor at Temple University and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management in the Dornsife School of Public Health at Drexel University. He is the author of seven books, more than forty journal articles and numerous research projects.   He was awarded a 1995 Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Research Investigator Award for research on the history and legacy of the racial segregation of health care and continues to lecture widely on this topic. His most recent book, The Power to Heal: Civil Rights, Medicare and the Struggle to Transform America’s Health System (Vanderbilt Press 2016 in press) received the Goldberg Prize for the best book in the area of medicine this year.  David is also assisting in the development of a companion documentary supported by the National Endowment for Humanities, produced by Barbara Berney, currently in the editing process that will tentatively air on PBS stations later this year in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the implementation of Medicare.

Research Interests

  • Health Administration and Management
  • Health Disparities
  • History of Public Health
  • Health Services Research
  • Health Policy
  • Spatial Analysis or GIS


D. Smith, Z. Feng, M. Fennell, J. Zinn and V. Mor. Separate and Unequal: Racial Segregation and Disparities in Nursing Home Quality in the United States. Health Affairs Vol. 26, No. 5 (September/October): 1448-1458.

D. Smith, “Organizing Care for Older Persons in New York: The Social Class Vulnerabilities of a World City” in Growing Older in World Cities: New York, London, Paris and Tokyo, Victor Rodwin and Michael Gusmano (Editors), Vanderbilt University Press: Nashville 2006, 79-102.

D. Smith. Racial Disparities in Care: The Concealed Legacy of a Divided System. Sexually Transmitted Diseases Vol. 22, No. 7 (July 2006): S65-S69.