Dominga S. Padilla, M.D.

Dominga S. Padilla, M.D., is currently an Associate Professor and Medical Director of the Pediatrics-Division of Adolescent & Young Adult Medicine at the Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School (NJMS). Prior to that, she was Associate Director of Cultural Competency Programs at NJMS for ten years where she developed and implemented a cultural competency curriculum, training faculty, residents and students. She completed her undergraduate studies at Drew University, in Madison, New Jersey receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology, with minors in Biochemistry and Spanish Culture & Literature. Thereafter, she attended the Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School where she obtained her M.D. degree and subsequently completed her residency in Pediatrics.

Prior to matriculating into medical school, she was an elementary school teacher in an urban underserved area. Dr. Padilla is known for her work in the area of cultural competency and medical education. She is currently a practicing pediatrician and has taught across the entire medical education spectrum of learners. Her medical background and her extensive experience in the planning and implementation of a cultural competency curriculum at NJMS, has allowed her to play an integral role in teaching cultural competency to medical students, residents and faculty.

Dr. Padilla has participated in the notable Objective Analysis of Self and Institution Seminar (OASIS) and Women Take Flight leadership and professional development programs through SciWoman at Rutgers. Dr. Padilla is an active participant of the Hispanic Center of Excellence (HCOE) as an HCOE scholar. She continues to pursue opportunities to empower and advance leadership qualities in our medical students, residents and adolescent & young adult populations.

Since 2013, Dr. Padilla has been the principal investigator on multiple grants and research projects that target the adolescent and young adult population addressing HIV care, sexual health, domestic violence and substance use/abuse in youths. In addition, she has been an active member of the Rutgers NJMS communities having served in numerous committees. At the national level, she is currently a member of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Group on Diversity and Inclusion, a fellow in the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), a member of the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (SAHM) and is board eligible in Addiction Medicine under the American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM).

Dr. Padilla has presented at local and regional conferences on Cultural Competency, Latino/Minority health and Sexual Health. Major areas of interest continue to include: Hispanic Health Issues and Effective Interventions, Health Services Research in the Latino population, Community Service Learning, Health Disparities Research, Adolescent Health-Primary Care, Adolescent Health-HIV/AIDS, Adolescent/Young Women’s Sexual Health, Cultural Competent Healthcare, Curricula & Training, Diversity and Inclusion, Curricula & Training. As a clinical educator, Dr. Padilla continues to provide training and assistance relating to the delivery of patient-centered, culturally sensitive care to diverse populations in an effort to eliminate health disparities.

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