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As Chief Medical Officer, Freda Lewis-Hall leads Pfizer Medical, the division of Pfizer responsible for the safe, effective and appropriate use of the company’s medicines and vaccines. Before coming to Pfizer in 2009, Dr. Lewis-Hall held senior leadership positions with Vertex, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Pharmacia and Lilly. Prior to joining the biopharmaceutical industry, she served as vice chairperson and associate professor of the Department of Psychiatry at Howard University College of Medicine and was an advisor to the National Institute of Mental Health. Trained as a psychiatrist, Dr. Lewis-Hall began her medical career in frontline patient care and became well-known for her work on the effects of mental illness on families and communities and on issues of health care disparities. She is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

In 2010, Dr. Lewis-Hall was appointed by the Obama Administration to the inaugural Board of Governors for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI); her PCORI appointment was renewed in 2014. She chairs the Cures Acceleration Network Review Board of the National Institutes of Health and serves as a member of the NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) Advisory Council. She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Clinical Trials Transformation Initiative and on the boards of Harvard Medical School, Tenet Healthcare Corporation, and Save the Children.

Dr. Lewis-Hall was named one of Black Enterprise’s “Top 50 Women in Corporate America” in 2015 and was the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association’s 2011 “Woman of the Year.” She earned her undergraduate degree at The Johns Hopkins University and her medical degree from Howard University College of Medicine. A passionate advocate for empowering patients through access to research-based medical information, she speaks frequently in venues from TEDMED to the Essence Music Festival; appears regularly as a medical expert on television shows including The Doctors and Dr. Phil; and shares health and medical information at

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Get Well Wednesday: Dr. Freda Lewis Hall And What You Need To Know About Sickle Cell  was originally published on