Rhonda BeLue, Ph.D., M.S.


Rhonda BeLue is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Administration at Pennsylvania State University. She received a master’s of science in statistics and a doctorate in health policy and management from Cornell University. Prior to coming to Penn State, BeLue was a public health worker and in that role, developed, implemented and evaluated community health programs for families in the Nashville, Tennessee area.

Research Interests & Projects

BeLue is a health services and policy researcher with a focus on chronic disease in minority and international populations. BeLue’s research is focused on the complex interaction among risk factors for chronic diseases in African and African American populations. She examines the various contexts (individual, family, health care facility and community) in which people must manage their illnesses. She is particularly interested in examining conditions most closely associated with stress-related inflammatory processes, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and anxiety depression. BeLue leads a project that examines the role of family and community in cardiovascular risk management in West Africa. She also has conducted preliminary semi-structured interviews among Senegalese patients with diabetes and hypertension and plans to expand the research to the family and community setting.

Contact Information: rzb10@psu.edu


BeLue, R., Okoror, T.A., Iwelunmor, J., Taylor, K.D., Degboe, A.N., Agyemang, C., and Ogedegbe, G. (September 2009) An overview of cardiovascular risk factor burden in sub-Saharan African countries: a socio-cultural perspective. Global Health 22:5:10.

BeLue, R., Francis, L.A., Rollins, B., and Colaco, B. (November 2009) One size does not fit all: Identifying risk profiles for overweight in adolescent population subsets. J Adolesc Health 45(5):517-24.

BeLue, R, Lanza, S.T., and Figaro, M.K. (Spring 2009) Lifestyle therapy changes and hypercholesterolemia: identifying risk groups in a community sample of Blacks and Whites. Ethn Dis. 19(2):142-7.

BeLue, R., Francis, L.A., and Colaco, B. (February 2009) Mental health problems and overweight in a nationally representative sample of adolescents: effects of race and ethnicity. Pediatrics 123(2):697-702.

BeLue, R., Schreiner, A.S., Taylor-Richardson, K., Murray-Kolb, L.E., and Beard, J.L. (July 2008) What matters most: an investigation of predictors of perceived stress among young mothers in Khayelitsha. Health Care Women Int. 29(6):638-48.