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CDR Neelam D. Ghiya | Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service Skip to main content

CDR Neelam D. Ghiya

December 2022 Officer Spotlight

Making a positive difference and a meaningful impact in the lives of others is what I would like to take away most from being a Public Health Service officer. A lifelong passion for and dedication to public health is why I serve.”

Deployed as a Liaison Officer during the COVID-19 response, CDR Neelam D. Ghiya helped ensure approximately 3,000 deployers had the critical information to reference pre-, during, and post-deployment in order to mitigate any risks. She also enhanced processes and strengthened partnerships to strategically resolve issues for deployers and created a model for future responses.

CDR Ghiya has deployed multiple times to serve those in need. For example, she served as the Health Education Team lead for the first Commissioned Corps and Remote Area Medical (RAM) deployment with the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Rapid Deployment Force (RDF-3) team. Together, they provided health education, prevention materials, and resources from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. These were provided in both English and Spanish and made available to over 600 patients in an underserved remote community. CDR Ghiya also served as a liaison officer for the Lead in Water Crisis response, in which she supported the distressed community in Flint, MI.

Commissioned as a Public Health Service officer in December 2011, CDR Ghiya coordinated CDC Director’s Public Health Grand Rounds sessions and Public Health Ethics Committee activities. Prior to working at CDC, she was a coordinator for Community Health Education at Belmont and Mahoning County Public Health Department, as well as at Youngstown State University in Ohio. It has been a great privilege to pay it forward and mentor students, interns, and fellows, as well as junior officers, and assist them in navigating their public health careers, just as others have for me along my professional journey,” said CDR Ghiya. She also served in this role at Emory University and Southern Regional Hospital, in addition to being an instructor in the Medical Assistant Program at Lincoln College in Georgia.

At this year’s USPHS Scientific and Training Symposium Health Services Category Day, where we connect with and learn from fellow officers from all over our nation, CDR Ghiya received the 2022 Health Services Professional Advisory Committee (HSPAC) Responder of the Year Award for her recent COVID-19 response deployment. Throughout my life, my family has instilled in me to aid those in need, those who are vulnerable, and the underserved while treating everyone with dignity and respect. Therefore, I gravitated towards a career in public health and found my calling in the USPHS Commissioned Corps,” said CDR Ghiya. She was also selected to serve as the Health Service Officer Representative for the Commissioned Officers Association Board of Directors and previously received the Officer of the Year Award from the Atlanta Commissioned Officers Association.

Currently stationed at the CDC in Atlanta, GA, CDR Ghiya serves as a Senior Public Health Advisor for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) in the National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention (NCHHSTP). She is responsible for providing leadership for the advancement of diversity and inclusion in the public health workforce. Her role involves implementing DEIA-related trainings and communication to promote cultural competency, humility, and support. This ultimately ensures CDC and USPHS is equipped with the diverse, multi-disciplinary capacity that is reflective of the dynamic communities we serve, especially when novel public health emergencies and disease outbreaks threaten the safety and security of our country and the world.

In her own words as one of America’s Health Responders CDR Ghiya said: Making a positive difference and a meaningful impact in the lives of others is what I would like to take away most from being a Public Health Service officer. A lifelong passion for and dedication to public health is why I serve.”

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