Center for Bioethics Ethics Grand Rounds March 4, 2022 | 12:15 - 1:30 pm CST Zoom | Free | Open to the Public

Identifying and Addressing Gaps in Health Outcomes Using the Health Capability Profile

Zoom | Free | Open to the public
Jennifer J. Prah, PhD Headshot
Jennifer Prah, PhD, MSc, MA, MSL


Current theoretical approaches to bioethics and public health ethics propose varied justifications as the basis for health care and public health, yet none capture a fundamental reality: people seek good health and the ability to pursue it. Health Capability is a concept in public health ethics that considers various individual and societal factors that determine people’s abilities to achieve optimal health outcomes. This talk introduces the Health Capability Profile and how it was used in identifying and addressing gaps in health. The talk discusses an empirical study that applies the Health Capability Profile in analyzing chronic Hepatitis B in rural Senegal.

This was an event of the Office of Academic Clinical Affairs (OACA) hosted by the Center for Bioethics and co-sponsored by the following U of MN units: the School of Nursing, Center for Global Health and Social Responsibility, the Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change, and the School of Public Health.


Jennifer Prah, PhD, MSc, MA, MSL, is the Amartya Sen Professor of Health Equity, Economics, and Policy, the former inaugural Associate Dean for Global Studies in the School of Social Policy, & Practice, and Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy and Scholar at the Center for Global Health at the Perelman School of Medicine, Senior Fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute for Health Economics and at the Center for Public Health Initiatives, all at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Prah is the founder and director of the Health Equity and Policy Lab (HEPL). She is also the recently appointed director of the Ortner Center on Violence & Abuse.

Dr. Prah is a leading global scholar of domestic and global health policy and public health. She conducts theoretical and empirical studies of health equity to address global and national health inequities, especially among women and children. Professor Prah founded and directs the HEPL, a mixed methods lab that studies public health and health and social policy issues such as the equity and efficiency of health system access, financing, resource allocation, policy reform, and the social determinants of health. Her research is conducted internationally and nationally, including work in Germany, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Malawi, Malaysia, Morocco, South Korea, South Africa, Taiwan, the United States, and Vietnam.

Professor Prah received a bachelor’s degree from the UC-Berkeley, master’s degrees from Oxford, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts, and Yale, and a doctoral degree from Harvard.  She is an elected member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a Hastings Center Fellow, a Greenwall Faculty Scholar, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a Donaghue Investigator.