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IU School of Medicine professor named deputy health commissioner at state department of health


INDIANAPOLIS — Jennifer Walthall, M.D., MPH, associate professor of clinical emergency medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine, has been named deputy commissioner and director for health outcomes for the Indiana State Department of Health.

Gov. Mike Pence made the announcement Oct. 24, saying Dr. Walthall’s primary focus will be long-term public health issues, such as infant mortality, smoking cessation and obesity.

“Dr. Jennifer Walthall’s experience on the front lines of patient care gives her a unique perspective on the health issues Hoosiers are facing today,” Pence said. “Her extensive research background in clinical emergency medicine and pediatric care will be invaluable as the Indiana State Department of Health continues to make progress on its key initiatives.”

Dr. Walthall currently serves as the division director for emergency medicine pediatrics in the Department of Emergency Medicine and as program director for the emergency medicine and pediatrics residency program at the IU School of Medicine. Her previously work includes attending staff physician for IU Health Methodist Hospital Emergency and Trauma Center and Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health. Along with her clinical and academic work, Dr. Walthall is involved in several advocacy projects, promoting safety awareness for ATV riders and bicycle riders.  

She received her bachelor’s degree at the University of Houston Honors College. She received a Master of Public Health from the Indiana University Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health and her medical degree from the IU School of Medicine, where she also completed her residency training in emergency medicine-pediatrics.

Her memberships include Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Professional Honor Society, American College of Emergency Physicians, American Academy of Emergency Medicine, Emergency Medicine Residents Association, Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors, American Academy of Pediatrics, Society of Academic Emergency Medicine, Academic Pediatrics Association and the Midwest Injury Prevention Alliance.

Dr. Walthall will continue to work at IU School of Medicine, as permitted by Indiana Code 16-19-4-4. She will assume her role with the Indiana State Department of Health on Nov. 3.