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Kacey C. Ernst

Associate Professor & Program Director, Epidemiology and Biostatistics Department, University of Arizona

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Kacey C. Ernst


Kacey Ernst is an Infectious Disease Epidemiologist and Program Director of Epidemiology at the University of Arizona, College of Public Health.

Dr. Ernst graduated from the University of Michigan MPH (2001) and PhD (2006) programs in Epidemiology. She holds a BA in Chemistry from Lawrence University (1997). She has held positions in applied public health at the local and state level prior to entering academia.

Dr. Ernst joined the faculty at the University of Arizona in 2008. Her primary research interest is to identify the social and ecological determinants of vectorborne disease transmission. She works collaboratively with entomologists, social scientists, and ecologists to quantify the relationships in these complex human-vector-pathogen-environmental relationships. She has a particular interest in understanding how climate change and other anthropogenic changes alter the dynamics of transmission in emerging areas. Much of her work has focused on Aedes aegypti in the US Southwest and northern Mexico and on malaria control dynamics in western Kenya. She focuses on identifying these relationships to improve prevention and control strategies, including the development of early warning systems. She has a commitment to community and public engagement in vector control with project funding from Gates Foundation and the CDC to better understand how to motivate individuals and communities to participate in control strategies.

She has worked collaboratively with the University of West Indies since 2009 to deliver the MS in Epidemiology as the Infectious Disease Epidemiology module instructor/ advisor. She has worked with partners at the Jamaican Ministry of Health and UWI to conduct research on Aeaegypti and its arboviruses, specifically chikungunya.