Faculty Profiles

David A. Hurtado, ScD

Assistant Professor, Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences
Assistant Professor, Department of Health Behavior, OHSU - PSU School of Public Health
RJH 1596


I am a social and behavioral scientist that examines social determinants of workers’ health. I research modifiable occupational factors linked with work-related illnesses such as depression, musculoskeletal disorders, and non-communicable diseases. Most of my studies have been based on high-risk industries, especially patient-care.  As a faculty member of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center, a NIOSH Center of Excellence, I design and evaluate workplace  interventions aimed at promoting and protecting occupational health and safety, following the Total Worker Health™ framework. 

I conduct research in three interrelated areas:

  • Work-time control and health: My studies have showed that organizational factors that increase workers’ ability to control schedules, breaks and time off are positively linked with health and safety outcomes. My research attempts to intervene on work-time control to promote occupational health, especially in high-stress industries with scheduling demands (e.g. rotating shifts, long hours).
  • Peer support for safety: Peers influence health-related information, attitudes and behaviors at the workplace. My research examines how peer interactions affect occupational health and safety especially among high-stress (e.g. health-care) and vulnerable workforces (e.g. immigrant workers). I am particularly interested in developing evidence-based guidelines for peer-based safety training.
  • Employment conditions and health: Contractual arrangements and labor policies influence workers’ health. Using population-based datasets, I have examined the effects of informal work and job-related benefits on health and wellbeing, particularly in developing countries.


ScD, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, 2013
MSc, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, 2010
Specialist (honors), Occupational and Organizational Psychology, Universidad El Bosque, Bogotá, Colombia, 2007
BA (Psychology), Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia, 2006
BA (Anthropology), Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia, 2005

Previous Academic Appointments

Yerby Postdoctoral Research Fellow 2013-2015
Center for Work, Health and Well-being
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health


Google scholar


Recent Publications 2014-2016

Hurtado DA, Hessel P, Avendano M. The hidden costs of informal work: lack of social protection and subjective well-being in Colombia. International Journal of Public Health (In press).

Hurtado DA, Okechukwu CA, Buxton OM, Hammer LB, Hanson G, Klein L, Moen P, Berkman LF. Effects on cigarette consumption of a work-family supportive organizational intervention: six-month results from the Work, Family and Health Network study. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health (J Epidemiol Community Health doi:10.1136/jech-2015-206953 ).

Okechukwu CA, Kelly EL, Bacic J, DePasquale N, Hurtado D, Kossek E, Sembajwe G. Supporting employees' work-family needs improves health care quality: Longitudinal evidence from long-term care. Social Science & Medicine, 157, 111-119.

Jackson CL, Wee CC, Hurtado DA, Kawachi I. Obesity trends by industry of employment in the United Sates, 2004 to 2011. BMC Obestiy. Apr 2, 3-20.

Hurtado DA, Berkman LF, Buxton OM, Okechukwu CA. Schedule control and nursing home quality: exploratory evidence of a psychosocial predictor of resident care. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 35(2), 244-253.

Hurtado DA. Disparities in subjective well-being by socioeconomic status in Colombia. In Rojas M. (Ed). Handbook of Happiness Research in Latin America. Houten, Netherlands: Springer.

Hurtado DA, Glymour MM, Berkman LG, Reme S, Hashimoto D, Sorensen, G. Schedule control and mental health: the relevance of coworkers' reportsCommunity, Work & Family, 18(4), 416-434.

Hurtado DA, Nelson CC, Hashimoto, D, Sorensen, G. Supervisors' support for nurses’ meal breaks and mental health. Workplace Health & Safety, 63(3), 107-115.

Sabbath EL, Hurtado DA, Okechukwu CA, Tamers SL, Nelson C, Kim SS, Wagner G, Sorensen G. Occupational injury among hospital patient-care workers: What is the association with workplace verbal abuse? American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 57(2), 222-32.