Updated December 7, 2021
The bequest will advance health of underserved populations and promote research rigor.
The estate of Indiana University Alumnus James A. Caplin recently provided the Indiana University School of Public Health-Bloomington with a $2 million gift for the establishment of the James A. Caplin, M.D. Chair in Evidence-Based Public Health. The gift will advance rigorous, scientific study of both access to healthcare as well as the efficacy and quality of healthcare—particularly for the underserved. What's more, preference is to be directed to rural-related research.
"Besides building and operating his successful medical practice, Dr. Caplin was an intellectually curious researcher who valued and pursued hard evidence," says IU School of Public Health-Bloomington Dean David B. Allison. Dr. Caplin published original articles in several medical journals including Allergy & Asthma Proceedings and Immunology & Allergy Practice.
Much of the Caplin family has had ties to Indiana University and the medical field. Both Dr. Caplin's father, Samuel S. Caplin, and his uncle, Irvin Caplin, obtained their undergraduate and medical degrees from IU. Dr. Caplin's brother, Richard, also pursued medicine and earned an undergraduate degree from IU.
Dr. Caplin earned a B.A. in economics from IU in 1964. He completed an M.B.A. in finance two years later and, in 1974, he graduated from the IU School of Medicine. After completing an internship in pediatrics at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, Dr. Caplin completed a pediatrics residency at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida. He subsequently completed two allergy-immunology fellowships at Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Kansas. By 1986, Dr. Caplin had established a solo allergy practice in Corpus Christi—the largest of its kind in South Texas.
"Throughout his career, Dr. Caplin was truly committed to the expansion of access to effective medical care," Allison says. "At the same time, he embodied the spirit of inquiry that moves us in the School of Public Health today."
With the addition of the James A. Caplin, M.D. Chair in Evidence-Based Public Health, the school will be even more well positioned to answer critically important questions using a data-driven approach. "We are deeply honored and gratified to have received this bequest," Allison concludes.