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June 21, 2023

PIDS Foundation News: Trudy Murphy (Donor)

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Trudy Murphy, MD, retired from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2014, though she continued working with ongoing projects at the CDC and the World Health Organization through 2017.  Dr. Murphy earned her medical degree from the University of California Los Angeles and completed her post-graduate work at Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, TX, where she was a member of the faculty for more than 20 years. Her research career focused on the epidemiology of potential vaccine-preventable bacterial infections, including demonstrating the reduction in pharyngeal colonization by conjugate Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccines, which contributed to the vaccine success in preventing invasive disease.

When she joined CDC in 1998, Dr. Murphy’s work focused on infectious disease epidemiology and vaccine policy. She received the United States Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service in 2000 for leading research that demonstrated an association between RotaShield vaccination and intussusception. As a result of this work, and the work of colleagues, the national recommendation for use of RotaShield™ was withdrawn and safer vaccines to prevent rotavirus diarrhea were developed.  

Dr. Murphy joined PIDS in 1984, the same year the PID “club” transitioned into a Society, and she became board certified the first year there was a subspecialty pediatric infectious diseases exam in 1994. Her service to PIDS is extensive. It includes an election as Council Member at Large (now known as the Board of Directors) for 2000-2004, and election as member of the Nominations and Awards Committee from 2007-2009, chair of the Training Programs Committee, member of the Membership Committee, and she served as PIDS Liaison to both the IDSA Adult ID Disease Training Programs Committee and the IDSA Public Health Committee.

Though retired, Dr. Murphy remains a strong supporter of PIDS, the PIDS Foundation, and pediatric infectious diseases. She continues to read a number of journals each month to stay informed with the “exciting, worthwhile profession” she loves. Her Foundation contributions are, in part, aimed at encouraging medical professionals at all levels to become trained in and to practice pediatric infectious diseases, contributing critical expertise in the prevention, diagnosis, and care and treatment of children with infectious diseases.

One of the areas where she sees the PIDS Foundation could expand and make a difference is in awards that facilitate pediatric infectious diseases-trained physicians going into public health. The specialty’s trainees, in Dr. Murphy’s experience, can make outsized contributions and innovations to public health in the U.S. and worldwide. She believes pediatric ID’s emphasis on research, immunology, vaccinology, and antibiotic stewardship provide the background to contribute to public health internationally, nationally, at state and local levels.

“There is a great need for pediatric infectious disease expertise in public health and it can be a tremendously rewarding career.”

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Improving the health of children worldwide through philanthropic support of scientific and educational programs.

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