About This Program

Our Dual Mission

  • To improve diagnosis and treatment of skin conditions in resource-poor settings
  • To train providers at home and abroad in delivering high-quality dermatologic care to those most in need

Who We Are

Esther Freeman, MD
Dr. Esther Freeman, MD PhD, is a dermatologist and epidemiologist, specializing in global health dermatology.

Dr. Esther Freeman, MD, PhD is Director of Global Health Dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School. She is Chair of the Clinical Guidelines Committee at the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), and a member of the AAD's Task Force on Covid-19. 

She has worked to improve healthcare, especially those affected by HIV, in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and southeast Asia since 2003. She has collaborated with the World Health Organization since 2011, to establish guidelines for the treatment of HIV-associated skin conditions in the developing world. Her work centers around HIV-associated skin disease and HIV- associated cancer.

In 2020, Dr  Freeman is overseeing the international Dermatology Covid-19 Registry in collaboration with the American Academy of Dermatology.   Her work on Covid-19 has been featured in the New York Times and the Washington Post. 

Where We Collaborate

 Globe with program spots in Africa and Europe marked with red dots.

Kenya: Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital, Eldoret, Kenya

Uganda: Infectious Disease Institute, Kampala, Uganda

Uganda: Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital, Mbarara, Uganda

Nigeria: Institute of Human Virology, Abuja, Nigeria

Switzerland: World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland

South Africa: Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg, South Africa

Learn More About What We Do

Dermatology is expanding its role globally by creating awareness of the disparities in care globally and by training healthcare workers  in underserved areas to help improve healthcare, especially those patients affected by HIV.

Links to Our Work

Editorial: Expanding the Role of Dermatology in the World Health Organization and Beyond
World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines
Dr.  Freeman Publications at PubMed
Skin Health Matters: A Patient's Story
New York Times 2017: As Cancer Tears Through Africa
Today.com 2020: What are COVID Toes?
Forbes: COVID Toes are caused by Coronavirus infecting the lining of blood vessels
Canada Talks: Listen as Esther Freeman, MD discusses how some patients suffer from prolonged skin conditions from COVID-19
Forbes: "COVID " Toes are Caused by Coronavirus Infecting the Lining of Blood Vessels, Says New Study
USA Today: 'COVID arm' rash seen after Moderna vaccine annoying but harmless, doctors say
Insider: Getting a 'COVID arm' rash after the Moderna vaccine might be itchy, but it's no big deal
KCBS Radio: Ask An Expert: Skin reactions to COVID-19 vaccines
Washington Post: Why COVID arm and other post-vaccine rashes might actually be a ‘good thing’
New York Times:  "COVID toes may be caused by a powerful immune response, a new study finds
Healio: Q&A: Monkeypox added to dermatology registry to track cutaneous manifestations of disease 

Resources for Trainees

MGH Center for Global Health Travel Awards
American Academy of Dermatology Resident International Award

Mass General Global Health Home

You Can Help

You can help make high quality diagnosis and treatment a reality for those suffering from skin disease in one of the most impoverished communities worldwide. To learn more about our program, email us at GlobalHealthDerm@partners.org.