Global Health and Technology

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Global Health and Technology

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Dr. Bhavna Lall, MD, MPH, MPA

Bhavna Lall, M.D., M.P.H., M.P.A. is a clinical assistant professor of adult medicine in the Department of Clinical Sciences at the Tilman J. Fertitta Family College of Medicine. She contributes to the following pre-clerkship curriculum courses at the college: Clinical Focus Session 4: Transcending Borders and Integrated Clinical Cases. Lall also provides integrated primary care at the Harris Center for Mental Health and IDD. Lall is an internal medicine physician with a diverse background in global public health, medicine, and public administration. Previously, she has worked as a primary care physician at Brigham and Women’s and Faulkner Hospital and as an internal medicine hospitalist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. During this time, she was also faculty at Harvard Medical School as an Instructor of Medicine. She completed her bachelor’s degree from Washington University in St. Louis, her Master of Public Health from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and her medical degree from George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. Lall completed her internal medicine residency at Yale-New Haven Hospital and earned a Master’s in Public Administration at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. In the past, Lall served as a medical officer with the Peace Corps at its headquarters in Washington, D.C. She has also provided clinical service in Thailand, Uganda, Austria, and the U.K. and worked on public health projects and initiatives in India, the Caribbean region, Zimbabwe and Botswana. Prior positions also include management work in non-profits, healthcare consulting, and industry. Lall is interested in bridging gaps between public health and medicine, access to care issues, low-cost diagnostics and technology to address public health challenges, and addressing global public health challenges and healthcare disparities.


Asma Mirza, MS

Asma Mirza is a global health practitioner and the founder and CEO of Steradian Technologies, Inc, a Houston-based biotech startup bridging the gap of healthcare inaccessibility by inventing a fully portable, photon-based respiratory disease diagnostic that costs the price of a latte! Under Asma’s leadership, Steradian received the prestigious Bill & Melinda Gates grant for their work in creating deep-tech for global health equity, as well as grants from Johnson & Johnson, the Center for Medtech Device Innovation, and XPRIZE. Asma received her undergraduate degree in chemistry and molecular biology and her graduate degree in Global Health and Human Rights from Duke University. She is passionate about merging hard sciences with social science to reinvent, create, and develop innovative ideas into reality. Asma has led large projects globally in the Caribbean, Middle East, and South Asia. 

Asma recently received the prestigious Patrice Johnson Award Honor, the highest distinction in civic leadership in Houston. She is a fellow of Leadership Houston Class XXXVIII, and a cofounder of PAMosaic HTX, a non-profit arts collective highlighting artists of color and their work. Asma was also nominated and selected for Johnson & Johnson’s Mastermind CEOs program. Lastly, her company Steradian Technologies was named BIPOC Startup of the Year by Houston Exponential and named Top 10 Most Promising Life Science Startups by Rice Alliance and the Texas Life Science Forum.

Swaminathan P. Iyer, MD

Dr. Swaminathan Iyer is a hematologist in Houston, TX and is affiliated with University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He specializes in hematologic oncology and serves as the leader of the T cell Lymphoma group at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. He is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in medical oncology and hematology. After completing medical training at Bangalore Medical College in India, Dr. Iyer completed his residency in internal medicine at Wayne State University. He completed his fellowship in hematology and oncology at the University of Miami. He is a nationally recognized leader in early drug development in hematologic malignancies. Dr. Iyer’s efforts have expedited the care of immunocompromised patients. He is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Association for Cancer Research, and the American Society of Hematology.


Rishab Prakash, BSc will be speaking on behalf of Dr. Swaminathan P. Iyer.

Rishab Prakash works in the Department of Lymphoma and Myeloma at the MD Anderson Cancer Center, currently working towards the application of data science/machine learning methods to clinical research, such as using whole slide pathology images for automated disease diagnosis. While an undergraduate at Emory University, Rishab had the opportunity to work at the CDC, where he developed assays for genotyping of Hepatitis Delta and developed a passion for investigating diseases. After graduating in 2020 with a B.S. in Biology, Rishab joined a nonprofit group investigating COVID-19 variants and is now conducting data analysis efforts examining cancer patients with COVID-19. His goal is to pursue a career in medicine while contributing to innovative data science-based tools that will enable physicians to improve patient care

William B. Perkison, MD

William “Brett” Perkison, M.D., MPH, FACOEM, is an Assistant Professor on faculty at the University of Texas School of Public Health. He is the program director for the UT Occupational and Environmental Medicine residency. He obtained his medical degree at UTMB Galveston. He completed residencies in Family Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the UT School of Public Health. Prior to joining the UT faculty, he had extensive experience managing occupational health services in both the energy and healthcare industries. During his career, he has also had involved in leading disaster response efforts in the Houston area for numerous flooding events, including for Hurricanes Katrina, Ike, and Harvey.
He is currently involved in research projects, primarily in the areas of disaster response and diabetes prevention. His current work includes developing a disaster response e-learning tool for construction workers deployed to communities affected by flooding that provides both health and safety education as well as logistical and security support. His research in diabetes prevention has been aimed at developing innovations to increase participant attendance and success in Diabetes Prevention Programs.

Betsy Asma, MSc

Betsy Asma is the Director of Technology Development at Rice360 Institute for Global Health Technologies at Rice University. She leads the development and clinical implementation of multiple medical technologies for low-resource settings. Currently focused on Neonatal Essential Solutions and Technologies (NEST360), she has led the selection and development of medical devices appropriate to care for small and sick newborns in Sub-Saharan African hospitals. She holds a Master of Global Health degree from Duke Global Health Institute at Duke University with a BS in biomedical engineering from Marquette University. She has experience as a design engineer in the medical device industry, global health research methods, and designing and conducting clinical trials in Africa, Central & South America, and the US.