Dr. Habib Benzian Receives IADR Award for Research in Dental Public Health Sciences


Habib Benzian, DDS, MScDPH, PhD, research professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Health Promotion at NYU College of Dentistry, is a recipient of the Aubrey Sheiham Award for Distinguished Research in Dental Public Health Sciences from the International Association for Dental Research (IADR). The award recognizes an outstanding research paper published during 2019 in the field of dental public health. 

Benzian—who is also the associate director of global health and policy for NYU Dentistry’s World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Center for Quality-improvement, Evidence-based Dentistry—was the co-author of the Lancet Series on Oral Health, a two-part series published in The Lancet in July 2019. Benzian was the senior author of the award-winning paper titled, “Ending the neglect of global oral health: time for radical action.” The 13 international authors of the paper call for dentistry to be integrated with overall health care, especially primary care; prioritizes prevention over high-tech, expensive treatment; and recognizes the role of the sugar industry in undermining oral health.

The paper series has led to the establishment of a Lancet Commission on Global Oral Health, in which a group of 27 commissioners will work on policy recommendations to address the unmet burden of oral disease globally. Benzian leads the working group on Global Policy and Advocacy. A report from the commission is expected by 2022.

The IADR Aubrey Sheiham Award for Distinguished Research in Dental Public Health Sciences recognizes excellence in dental public health research, including research in epidemiology, biostatistics, health services, community-based prevention or health promotion, environmental health, health economics or health policy as applied to dentistry. It is named for Aubrey Sheiham, emeritus professor of Dental Public Health at University College London, whose work is characterized by a public health imperative and recognition that most chronic diseases have risk factors in common and that health behaviors related to those risk factors are socially determined and unequally distributed.