Kristen A. Feemster, MD, MPH, MSHPR, FAAP

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 Kristen A. Feemster, MD, MPH, MSPHR, is Director of Research for the Vaccine Education Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Medical Director of the Immunization Program and Acute Communicable Diseases at the Philadelphia Department of Public Health.

Areas of Expertise: Epidemiology of vaccine preventable diseases with a focus on community and social factors, Global and domestic vaccine policy, Vaccine hesitancy, Ambulatory healthcare associated respiratory infection and surveillance
Locations: Main Campus
Appointments and Referrals: 1-800-TRY-CHOP (1-800-879-2467)


Dr. Feemster’s portfolio reflects a longstanding interest in public health and a commitment to improve outcomes for children by addressing contextual factors that may impact disease risk and access to health services. This has resulted in two complimentary foci: 1) understanding how environmental factors, social networks, and community systems affect the epidemiology of infectious diseases; and 2) evaluating policies related to the prevention of pediatric infectious diseases, specifically vaccine policies. Her current research includes vaccine acceptance among parents and immunization providers in the U.S. and internationally, community-based interventions to improve vaccine uptake, neighborhood factors associated with the incidence of pertussis and influenza, and healthcare associated respiratory infection in the pediatric ambulatory setting. This body of work has also demonstrated the importance of understanding the drivers of health-related behaviors and adoption of new recommendations to ensure effective policy implementation. 

At Penn and CHOP, Dr. Feemster is affiliated with the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics, PolicyLab, the Center for Pediatric Clinical Effectiveness and Global Health programs at CHOP. She serves as a technical advisor for an American Academy of Pediatrics global immunization advocacy initiative, and is past-chair of the Advisory Commission for Childhood Vaccines that advises the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. In the community, she serves on the boards of the Philadelphia and Pennsylvania Immunization Coalitions.

Dr. Feemster received her MD and an MPH in Population and Family Health from Columbia University Schools of Medicine and Public Health in New York City. She completed pediatric residency at CHOP then pursued a dual fellowship training program in health services research and pediatric infectious diseases; she was a fellow in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Clinical Scholars Program at Penn, completing a Master of Science degree in Health Policy Research then returned to CHOP for pediatric infectious diseases training. She joined the faculty in 2010.

Education and Training

Medical School

MD - Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY


Pediatrics - The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA


Post-doctoral Fellow - The Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

Post-doctoral Fellow - Division of Infectious Diseases, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA

Board Certification

Pediatric Infectious Diseases

Undergraduate Degree

BS - Yale University, New Haven, CT

Graduate Degree

Master of Public Health - Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, New York, NY

MS in Health Policy Research - University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

Titles and Academic Titles

Director of Research, Vaccine Education Center

Adjunct Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

Departments and Services



Selected Papers


Kelly MS, Zheng J, Boiditswe S, Steenhoff AP, Feemster KA, Arscott-Mills T, Seme B, Ratshaa B, Rulaganyang I, Patel MZ, Mantzor S, Shah SS, Cunningham CK.  Investigating mediators of the poor pneumonia outcomes of Human Immunodeficiency Virus-exposed but uninfected children.  J Pediatric Infectious Dis Soc. 2017 Nov 20.  doi: 10.1093/jpids/pix092. [Epub ahead of print] PMID:29165579

Feemster KA, Localio AR, Grundmeier R, Metlay JP, Coffin SE.  Incidence of healthcare-associated influenza-like illness after a primary care encounter among children. Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. Epub 2018 Mar 22.


Handy LK, Bryan M, Gerber JS, Zaoutis T, Feemster KA.  Variability in antibiotic prescribing for community-acquired pneumonia.  Pediatrics. 2017 Mar 7. pii: e20162331. doi: 10.1542/peds.2016-2331. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 28270546.

Mohanty S, Feemster KA, Buttenheim A, Moser CA, Field RI, Mayer W, Carroll-Scott A.  Factors associated with pediatrician responses to alternative immunization schedule requests.  Clinical Pediatrics.  Published online February 1, 2017. DOI: PMID: 28952327.

Handy L, Maroudi S, Powell M, Nfila B, Moser C, Japa I, Monyatsi N, Tzortzi E, Kouzeli I, Luberti A, Theordoridou M, Offit P, Steenhoff A, Shea JA, Feemster KA.  The impact of access to immunization information on vaccine acceptance in three countries. PLoS One. 2017 Aug 3;12(8):e0180759. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0180759. eCollection 2017. PMID: 28771485.

Katsuta T, Miyaji Y, Feemster KA, Offit P. Treatment with the quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine for juvenile-onset recurrent respiratory papillomatosis: a case report. Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. 2017 Aug 8. doi: 10.1093/jpids/pix063. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID:28992265.


Feemster KA, Odeniyi F, Localio AR, Grundmeier R, Coffin SE, Metlay JP.  Surveillance for Healthcare-associated Influenza-like illness in Pediatric Clinics: Validation of Diagnosis Codes for Case Identification.  Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. 2016 Oct;37(10):1247-50. doi: 10.1017/ice.2016.147. Epub 2016 Jul 15. PMID: 27418404.

Burson RC, Buttenheim A, Armstrong A, Feemster KA.  Community pharmacies as sites of adult vaccination: A systematic review.  Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics 2016 Dec;12(12):3146-3159. doi: 10.1080/21645515.2016.1215393. Epub 2016 Aug 15. PMID: 27715409


Buttenheim AM, Fiks AG, Burson Ii RC, Wang E, Coffin SE, Metlay JP, Feemster KA. A behavioral economics intervention to increase pertussis vaccination among infant caregivers: a randomized feasibility trial.  Vaccine. 2015 Dec 10. pii: S0264-410X(15)01749-1. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2015.11.068. [Epub ahead of print].  PMID: 26686571.

Kelly MS, Smieja M, Luinstra K, Wirth KE, Goldfarb DM, et al. Association of respiratory viruses with outcomes of severe childhood pneumonia in Botswana. PloS one. 2015; 10(5):e0126593.

Feemster KA. Remembering the Benefits of Vaccination. JAMA Pediatr. 2015;169(7):624-626. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.0647. Read the article.

Kestenbaum LA, Feemster KA. Identifying and addressing vaccine hesitancy. Pediatric annals. 2015; 44(4):e71-5. NIHMSID: NIHMS696931

Kelly MS, Wirth KE, Madrigano J, Feemster KA, Cunningham CK, et al. The effect of exposure to wood smoke on outcomes of childhood pneumonia in Botswana. The international journal of tuberculosis and lung disease : the official journal of the International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease. 2015; 19(3):349-55. NIHMSID: NIHMS665256


Feemster KA, Middleton M, Fiks AG, Winters S, Kinsman SB, et al. Does intention to recommend HPV vaccines impact HPV vaccination rates? Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics. 2014; 10(9):2519-26.

Mayne SL, duRivage NE, Feemster KA, Localio AR, Grundmeier RW, et al. Effect of decision support on missed opportunities for human papillomavirus vaccination. American journal of preventive medicine. 2014; 47(6):734-44. NIHMSID: NIHMS625237

Szymczak JE, Feemster KA, Zaoutis TE, Gerber JS. Pediatrician perceptions of an outpatient antimicrobial stewardship intervention. Infection control and hospital epidemiology. 2014; 35 Suppl 3:S69-78.

Feemster KA Delay in measles vaccination is associated with increased risk of post-vaccination seizures. The Journal of pediatrics. 2014; 164(3):674.

Opel DJ, Feemster KA, Omer SB, Orenstein WA, Richter M, et al. A 6-month-old with vaccine-hesitant parents. Pediatrics. 2014; 133(3):526-30.

Feemster KA, Offit P. "Compassionate use" for public health. Annals of internal medicine. 2014; 160(6):421-2.

Kuncio DE, Middleton M, Cooney MG, Ramos M, Coffin SE, et al. Health care worker exposures to pertussis: missed opportunities for prevention. Pediatrics. 2014; 133(1):15-21.


Feemster KA. Can building evidence move a persistent vaccine safety concern? Pharmacoepidemiology and drug safety. 2013; 22(12):1271-3.

Feemster KA, Offit P. Delaying vaccination is not a safer choice. JAMA pediatrics. 2013; 167(12):1097-8.

Fiks AG, Grundmeier RW, Mayne S, Song L, Feemster K, et al. Effectiveness of decision support for families, clinicians, or both on HPV vaccine receipt. Pediatrics. 2013; 131(6):1114-24.

Feemster KA. Overview: special focus vaccine acceptance. Human vaccines & immunotherapeutics. 2013; 9(8):1752-4.


Feemster, KA. Vaccines: What Everyone Needs to Know, 1st Edition. New York: Oxford University Press, 2017.


Feemster KA, Fein J. Influenza. In: Schwartz MW, Bell LM, Bingham PM, et al., eds. 5-Minute Pediatric Consult, 7th Edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2015.

Feemster KA. Vaccine Adverse Events. In: Schwartz MW, Bell LM, Bingham PM, et al., eds. 5-Minute Pediatric Consult, 7th Edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2015.

Feemster KA, Fein J. Influenza. In: Schwartz MW, Bell LM, Bingham PM, et al., editors. 5Minute Pediatric Consult. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008.

Feemster KA, Winters SE, Lavelle 1. Human Papillomavirus. In: Schwartz MW, Bell LM, Bingham PM, et al., editors. 5-Minute Pediatric Consult. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008.

Editorial and Academic Positions

Editorial Positions

2013-Present, Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics, Associate Editor
2012-13, Special Focus on Vaccine Acceptance, Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics, Guest Editor


2013-present, JAMA Pediatrics
2012, Cochrane Protocol: Interventions for informing/educating parents about early childhood vaccination.  
2012-present, Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society
2011-present, Vaccine
2010-present, Pediatric Emergency Care
2008-present, Academic Pediatrics
2008-present, Pediatrics
2008-present, Journal of Adolescent Health