Typhanye Vielka Dyer, PhD, MPH | She/Her/Hers
Pronounced Ti-fuh-nee Vee-el-kah Dai-yer
Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
School of Public Health | University of Maryland, College Park
With a long standing commitment to research racial and gender disparities in STI and HIV infection and engagement in care, Dr. Typhanye Dyer is an epidemiologist and health disparities scholar whose research examines the influence of social, psychological, and behavioral factors on STI and HIV-risk in Black populations. She has over 15 years of experience conducting research exploring HIV infection and health-related outcomes among Black underserved populations, including sexual minorities and women. The majority of her work involves examining syndemics (intersecting psychosocial and structural barriers to care) among sexual minority Black men, including the impact of trauma, poor mental health and criminal justice involvement and STI/HIV for Black gay and bisexual men.
Additionally, Dr. Dyer examines risk for females with high risk male sex partners and partners who have been incarcerated, exploring social vulnerability including stigma and discrimination that drive risk. Her expertise also includes examining intersectional stigma and engagement in the HIV care continuum for older Black women living with HIV. Dr. Dyer applies critical race theory and the theory of intersectionality to examine how intersections of racial identity, sexual identity and ethno-cultural identity influence risk networks for Black MSMW and Black women. She also utilizes biomedical approaches to understanding elevated risk for STI and HIV among Black women who have been involved in the criminal justice system.
Passion for Health Equity with Roots
Wings to show you what you can become... roots to remind you where you're from.
Dr. Dyer's passion for health equity is rooted in her upbringing, which laid the foundation for much of the work she has done and is committed to continuing. She was born in Compton, California where poverty, gang violence and socioeconomic despair exemplified the experiences of its residents, who experienced poor healthcare and limited access to quality health services. While the beach was but a few miles away, growing up in this particular suburb of Los Angles, she bore witness to high rates of crime, drug abuse and violence, which blurred the beautiful palm trees, lining each of its streets.
It took some time to realize that the experiences of growing up in an extremely impoverished area of the country helped shape her ideas around ways to have an impact on the lives of people and communities with similar challenges. She was a product of her environment, becoming a single mother at the age of 20 and it was at this time that her father was also diagnosed with HIV. It was 1993 and highly active antiretroviral therapies had not been developed. At this time, she became even more aware of the inequitable distribution of resources and unequal access to care for people of color living with an acute communicable disease that would soon become chronic. Unaware of how he contracted the virus and too afraid to ask because of fear of further stigmatizing him, she dedicated all of her effort, both professionally and academically into examining the social, psychological and behavioral factors that drive disparate rates of HIV/STI in the Black community.
Dr. Dyer conducts research exploring HIV and HIV-related outcomes among sexual minority men, as well as women. Through her work, which ultimately aims to improve HIV-related health outcomes, she is developing new ways of approaching the issues of mental health, trauma, violence and stigma in epidemiologic research.