Aasim I. Padela, MD, MSc

Director of Program on Medicine and Religion
Director of Initiative on Islam and Medicine
Associate Professor, Section of Emergency Medicine
Faculty, Maclean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics

Dr. Aasim Padela is the Director of the Initiative on Islam and Medicine, Associate Professor of Medicine in the Section of Emergency Medicine, and a faculty member of the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics and Divinity School at the University of Chicago 

Dr. Padela holds an MD from Weill Cornell Medical College, completed residency in emergency medicine at the University of Rochester, and received an MSc in Healthcare Research from the University of Michigan. Prior to that, he received Bachelor’s degrees in Biomedical Engineering and Classical Arabic and Literature from the University of Rochester. His Islamic studies expertise comes from part-time seminary studies during secondary school, and tutorials with traditionally-trained Islamic authorities. 

Dr. Padela is a clinician-researcher with scholarly foci at the intersections of healthcare, bioethics, and religion. His scholarship aims at improving health and healthcare through better accommodating religious values in healthcare delivery. Using Muslim Americans and Islam as a model, he studies how (i) religion impacts patient health behaviors and healthcare experiences, (ii) informs the professional identities and workplace experiences of clinicians, and (iii) furnishes bioethical guidance to patients, providers, policy-makers, and religious leaders. This knowledge is subsequently mobilized towards educational and policy interventions. His current projects span behaviors related to cancer screening, organ donation, end-of-life care, and the intersection of religion and science, and are funded by the Templeton Foundation, the American Cancer Society, the Health Research and Services Administration, and the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute. 

He has authored over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, serves in an editorial capacity for the Encyclopedia of Islamic Bioethics, American Journal of Bioethics, BMC Medical Ethics, International Journal of Islam, BETIM Journal of Medical Humanities, and TAHFIM Journal of Islam and the Contemporary World. His work and expert commentary has been featured in the New York Times, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, National Public Radio, BBC, and CNN