Helena Hansen

Helena Hansen

Professor and Chair of Research Theme in Translational Social Science and Health Equity at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine


Helena Hansen, MD, PhD, is professor and chair of Research Theme in Translational Social Science and Health Equity at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. She has published widely in clinical and social science journals ranging from JAMA and NEJM to Social Science and Medicine and Medical Anthropology, on faith healing of addiction in Puerto Rico, psychiatric disability under welfare reform, opioids and race, ethnic marketing of pharmaceuticals, and structural competency. Her first book, Addicted to Christ: Remaking Men in Puerto Rican Pentecostal Drug Ministries was published by University of California Press in 2018, and her second book, Structural Competency in Medicine and Mental Health: A Case-Based Approach to Treating the Social Determinants of Health, with coeditor Jonathan Metzl, was published by Springer Press in 2019. Her third book, Whiteout: How Racial Capital Changed the Color of Heroin in America, is forthcoming from UC Press. She has received major funding from NIDA, the Mellon Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.