Professor, Community Health Sciences, School of Public Health
Gene Declercq combines formal training in political science with almost twenty years of experience as a certified childbirth educator to examine policy and practice related to childbirth in the US and abroad. His recent work in examining cesarean sections in the US and overseas has focused on maternal and infant morbidity associated with low risk cesareans and with repeat cesareans as well as the programmatic and policy influences on practices related to childbirth practices. This research has been supported as part of his work as a Robert Wood Johnson-funded Health Policy Investigator and by grants from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau.
He has served as lead author of two national studies of women’s experiences in childbirth entitled Listening to Mothers. He was a technical advisor to the film documentary, The Business of Being Born and has been one of the organizers of a project that has developed a 30 minute version of that documentary that, along with support materials he developed with students, can be used in college classrooms. He was also a producer and presenter of “Birth by the Numbers,” a 20 minute video that examines outcomes associated with current US birth practices.
He is principal investigator on two NIH funded collaborative projects examining child and maternal outcomes associated with Assisted Reproductive Technologies (MOSART project) and is one of the founders of the Pregnancy to Early Life Longitudinal (PELL) data system that links vital statistics, hospital, and administrative data on almost 900,000 births in Massachusetts since 1998. He’s also been active in a variety of public health projects in his hometown of Lawrence, Massachusetts, including a current effort to develop a free volunteer based clinic to serve those without access to care.
As an educator, he is a past president of the Association of Teachers of Maternal and Child Health and has been a recipient of the Norman Scotch Award for outstanding teaching at BUSPH. He is currently the BUSPH Assistant Dean for DrPH Education and serves as chair of the DrPH Subcommittee of the Association of Schools of Public Health.