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Rulin C. Hechter, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Rulin Hechter, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Clinical Science, is an infectious disease epidemiologist and substance abuse researcher, whose research focuses on the prevention and treatment of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, and the impact of psychiatric disorders and substance abuse on health outcomes and care engagement. Dr. Hechter is a research scientist with the Kaiser Permanente Southern California (KPSC) Department of Research & Evaluation. She is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Hechter serves on the regional HIV Management Committee and she is the KPSC site principal investigator for the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN) funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Education and Training

  • MD, Suzhou Medical College, Suzhou, China
  • MS, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
  • PhD, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Fellowship, UCLA-Fogarty AIDS International Training and Research Program


Selected Prior Positions

2004-2006 Teaching Assistant, Graduate student tutor
University of California, Los Angeles Department of Epidemiology

Staff Research Associate
University of California, Los Angeles Department of Epidemiology


Research Associate
Harold Simmons Center for Chronic Disease Research and Epidemiology, Los Angeles BioMed Research Institute

2009 Senior Graduate Student Researcher VI
University of California, Los Angeles Department of Epidemiology
2010-2015 Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Division of Epidemiologic Research, Department of Research and Evaluation, Kaiser Permanente Southern California
2015-present Research Scientist I
Division of Epidemiologic Research, Department of Research and Evaluation, Kaiser Permanente Southern California
2016-present Adjunct Assistant Professor
University of California, Los Angeles Department of Epidemiology


Selected Honors and Awards

2005 Full Scholarship, Annual Course on Principles of STD and HIV Research, Center for AIDS and STD, University of Washington

Department Allocation Fellowship, UCLA

2013 Trainee Travel Grant, ID Week Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA
2015 Young Investigator Scholarship, Annual Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections, Seattle, Washington
2015 Claudette Gravell Award for Improving HIV Care and Research, Kaiser Permanente
2015-2017 Scholarship, UCLA HIV/AIDS, Substance Abuse, and Trauma Training Program
2016 Conference Scholarship, 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016), Durban, South Africa
2018 Conference Scholarship, 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018), Amsterdam, the Netherlands
2019 Scholarship, Multiple Chronic Conditions Scholars Program, Health Care Systems Research Network-Older Americans Independence Centers AGING Initiative


Selected Publications

Peer-reviewed research manuscripts

  • Hechter RC, Jacobsen SJ, Luo Y, Nomura JH, Towner WJ, Tartof SY, Tseng HF. Hepatitis B testing and vaccination among adults with sexually transmitted infections in a large managed care organization. Clin Infect Dis. 2014; 58:1739-1745.
  • Hechter RC, Chao CR, Sidell MA, Sy LS, Ackerson BK, Slezak JM, Patel NJ, Tseng HF, Jacobsen SJ. Quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV4) initiation in boys in Southern California before and since routine use (2009-2013). Am J Public Health. 2015; 105:2549-2556. PMCID: PMC4638271.
  • Hechter RC, Bider-Canfield Z, Towner WJ. Effect of an electronic alert on targeted HIV testing among high-risk population. Perm J. 2018; 22:4-9. PMCID: PMC6172036.
  • Hechter RC, Horberg MA, Weisner C, Campbell CI, Contreras R, Chen LH, Yarborough BJH, Lapham G, Haller IV, Ahmedani BK, Binswanger IA, Kline-Simon AH, Satre DD. Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) measures of alcohol and drug treatment initiation and engagement among people living with HIV and patients without an HIV diagnosis. Subst Abus. 2019. (Epub March 25, 2019).
  • Hechter RC, Qian L, Tartof SY, Sy LS, Klein NP, Weintraub E, Mercado C, Naleway A, McLean HQ, Jacobsen SJ. Vaccine safety in HIV-infected adults within the Vaccine Safety Datalink Project. Vaccine. 2019; 37(25):3296-3302.