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Usama Bilal, PhD, MPH, MD

Usama Bilal

Assistant Professor
Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Urban Health Collaborative
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MD, University of Oviedo; MPH, University of Alcala/National School of Public Health; PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


Usama Bilal ( is currently an Assistant Professor in the Urban Health Collaborative and the Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics at Drexel's Dornsife School of Public Health. His primary research interest is the macrosocial determinants of health, with a specific interest in nutrition-related conditions and their upstream causes. Most of his work focuses on the role that city- and neighborhood-level dynamics have in generating disease, and the use of complexity methodologies to study the emergent properties of urban environments.

He has earned a PhD in Cardiovascular Epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, an MPH from the Universidad de Alcala in Spain, and MD from the Universidad de Oviedo in Spain.

Research Interests

  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Health and Place or Built Environment
  • Data Analysis Methods
  • Health Disparities
  • Spatial Analysis or GIS
  • Urban Health


Bilal U, Hill-Brigs F, Sanchez-Perruca L, del Cura I, Franco M. Association of Neighborhood Socioeconomic Status and Diabetes Burden using Electronic Health Records in Madrid (Spain): The Heart Healthy Hoods Study. BMJ Open. 2018 In Press

Bilal U, Auchincloss AH, Diez-Roux AV. Neighborhood Environments and Diabetes Risk and Control. Current Diabetes Reports. 2018;18:62

Knapp EA, Bilal U, Burke BT, Dougherty GB, Glass TA. A network approach to understanding obesogenic environments for children in Pennsylvania. Connections. 2018;38(1):1-11

Bilal U, Jones-Smith J, Diez J, Lawrence RS, Celentano DD, Franco M. Neighborhood social and economic change and retail food environment change in Madrid (Spain): The Heart Healthy Hoods Study. Health & Place. 2018 May;51:107-17.

Bilal U, Diez-Roux AV. Troubling Trends in Health Disparities. New England Journal of Medicine. 2018 Apr 19;378(16):1557-1558.

Bilal U, Lau B, Matthews CW, Mayer K, Geng E, Napravnik S, Eron JJ, Mugavero MJ, Hutton H, Cropsey K, McCaul ME, Crane H, Chander G. Predictors of Longitudinal Trajectories of Alcohol Consumption in People with HIV. Alcohol Clinical and Experimental Research. 2018 Mar;42(3):561-570.

Bilal U, Knapp EA, Cooper RS. Swing Voting in the 2016 Presidential Election in Counties Where Midlife Mortality has been Rising in White Non-Hispanic Americans. Social Science and Medicine. 2018 Jan;197:33-38

Bilal U, Cooper RS, Abreu FM, Nau C, Franco M, Glass TA. Economic growth and mortality: do social protection policies matter? International Journal of Epidemiology 2017 Aug 1;46(4):1147-1156.

Glass TA, Bilal U. Are neighborhoods causal? Complications arising from the ‘stickiness’ of ZNA. Social Science and Medicine. 2016 Oct;166:244-53.

Franco M, Bilal U, Orduñez P, Benet M, Morejon A, Caballero B, Kennelly JF, Cooper RS. Population-wide body weight loss and regain in relation to diabetes and cardiovascular disease mortality: Cuba 1980-2010. British Medical Journal. BMJ 2013;346:f1515.

Additional Publications via PubMed