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Catherine Freeland, PhD, MPH Research Associate / Instructor

Catherine Freeland, PhD, MPH

Research Associate/Instructor of Public and Policy Health Research,  Department of Translational Medicine



Catherine Freeland is the Associate Director of Public Health Research at the Hepatitis B Foundation. Her areas of interest are viral hepatitis B, hepatocellular carcinoma, and addressing health disparities and discrimination related to hepatitis B in underserved populations. Catherine is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Thomas Jefferson University, College of Population Health with a concentration in Health Behavior Science and pursuing a dissertation to address low hepatitis B birth dose uptake in Nigeria. She is the secretary of the National Task Force for hepatitis B, manages a Hepatitis B-focused provider training program and leads the International Hepatitis B Discrimination Working Groups.  



Doctor of Philosophy - Population Health, Behavioral Health and Sciences (2023), Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia

MPH (2016), East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, Tenn.

BA - Biology (2012), Hanover College, Hanover, Ind.


Research Experience

Catherine Freeland is the Public Health Program Director and Research Fellow at the Hepatitis B Foundation. Her areas of interest are viral hepatitis B and C, and hepatocellular carcinoma and addressing health disparities in underserved populations. Her research experience has been qualitative and quantitative epidemiology and health disparities related to hepatitis B.


HepVu Technical Advisory Group 

African Hepatitis Summit Planning Committee

University of Pennslyvania Abramson Cancer Center Community Advisory Board

Pennsylvania Viral Hepatitis Elimination Committee

Hep Free PA Advisory Board

National Task Force on Hepatitis B Advisory Board

Director Hep B United Philadelphia


Publications and Patents

Co-author of over 10 publications, including 4 manuscripts, and 13 posters. She has also presented 17  lectures.


Peer-Reviewed Manuscripts: 

  1. Ha Y. P., Sun Y., Wilkinson J., Wang S., Chien L., Wu M., Wang E., Freeland C. Implementation and outcomes of a remote hepatitis B screening program designed to overcome COVID-19 pandemic-related disruptions to community-based screenings for Asians in Greater Philadelphia: a descriptive study. Health Sci Rep.  2022; 5:e761. doi:10.1002/hsr2.761 
  2. Freeland C., Mendola L., Cheng V., Cohen C., Wallace J. The Unvirtuous Cycle of Discrimination Affecting People with Hepatitis B. International Journal for Equity in Health. (June 2022) 10.21203/rs.3.rs-1024776/v1 
  3. Silliman, M., Alber, J.M, Gibbs, S., Gee, M., Conover, S., Chan, C., Cohen, C., Freeland, C., & Racho, R. Comparing Lengths and Inclusion of Information in Storytelling Videos: Implications for Hepatitis B Education. PEC Innovation. (May 2022) 
  4. Omer K., Freeland C., Abdelmounem A., Murtada Y. , Eilaf A., H. Desalegn. Assessment of Hepatitis B Knowledge and Awareness among the Sudanese population in Khartoum State. Pan-African Medical Journal. May 2022.  
  5. Freeland, C., Racho, R., Kamischke, M. et al. Health-related quality of life for adults living with hepatitis B in the United States: a qualitative assessment. J Patient Rep Outcomes 5, 121 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1186/s41687-021-00398-8  
  6. Freeland, C, Racho, R, Kamischke, M,  Moraras, K,  Wang, E,  Cohen, C.  Cure everyone and vaccinate the rest: The patient perspective on future hepatitis B treatment. J Viral Hepat.  2021; 00: 1– 6. https://doi.org/10.1111/jvh.13592 
  7. Foster K., Tanny O., Freeland C., Metcalf H. Use of Appalachian Identity Scale to Measure Perceptions of Appalachian Identity. Journal of Appalachian Studies. (May 2021). 
  8. Freeland, C., Farrell, S., Kumar, P. et al. Common concerns, barriers to care, and the lived experience of individuals with hepatitis B: a qualitative study. BMC Public Health 21, 1004 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-021-11093-0  
  9. Kumar P., Freeland C., Bodor S., Ferrell S., Cohen C., Frasso R. (2020) What do individuals living with hepatitis delta and their caregivers need? Preventing Chronic Disease. 2020;17:200324. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd17.200324external icon.  
  10. Nwankwo P., Kane R., Freeland C. (2020) Perceived Barriers to Physical Activity and Nutrition Among Geisinger Students. Scholarly Research in Progress. Vol 4. https://issuu.com/geisingercommonwealth/docs/gcsomscrip2020  
  11. Freeland C, Ventricelli DJ. The Role of the Pharmacist in Preventing Hepatitis B in the Context of the Opioid Crisis. Prev Chronic Dis 2020;17:200062. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd17.200062external icon. 
  12. Figgatt M., Hildick-Smith J., Addish E., Coleman J., Benitez J., Freeland C., Alles S., Viner K., Johnson C., Kuncio D. (2020) Hepatitis A and B Virus Immunity and Susceptibility among Syringe Services Program Participants Who Use Drugs. Public Health Reports. https://doi.org/10.1177/0033354920943528 
  13. Freeland C., Vader D., Cohen C., George B. (2020) A Predictive Model for Hepatitis B Infection Among High-Risk Adults Using a Community-Based Sample in Greater Philadelphia. Journal of Viral Hepatitis. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jvh.13365   
  14. Freeland C., Huynh, T., Vu. N., Nguyen T., Cohen C., (2020) Understanding Barriers and Knowledge Related to Hepatitis B for Vietnamese Nail Salon Workers in the United States. Journal of Community Health.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10900-020-00878-w 
  15. Freeland C., Pellechio S., Perera U., Cohen, C., (2020) Barriers to Hepatitis B Screening and Prevention for African Immigrant Populations in the United States: A Qualitative Study. Viruses 2020, 12(3), 305; https://doi.org/10.3390/v12030305. 
  16. Alber, J.M, Cohen, C., Racho, R., Freeland, C., Ghazvini, S., Tolentino, B., Almeida, R., & Silliman, M. (2020). Exploring the impact of storytelling on storytellers in a hepatitis B health communication context. Patient Education & Counseling. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2020.03.026.  
  17. Freeland C., Cohen C., Collier M. G., (2018) Public Health Response to Hepatitis B Exposure: A Case Study on Gaps and Opportunities to Improve Post Exposure Care. Infectious Disease in Clinical Practice. ISSN: 1056-9103. 
  18. Cohen, C., Alber, J.M., Bleakley, A., Grossman, S., Freeland, C., Alarcon, K., Merchant, R. (2018). Social media for hep B awareness: Young adult and community leader perspectives. Health Promotion Practice. Advanced online publication. doi: 10.1177/1524839918765438. 
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