Dr. Cruz is a board certified pediatrician who joined Philadelphia FIGHT as the Medical Director for our Pediatric and Adolescent Health Center. He completed his undergraduate training in Biology and Psychology from Union College, his medical school training at Albany Medical College, his residency training at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, and his Chief Residency at the Albert Einstein Medical Center. He joined FIGHT after 9 years as an academic pediatrician at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, where he led the medical training program as an Associate Residency Program Director.
Currently, Dr. Cruz is a Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Drexel University College of Medicine, has additional training in Child Abuse Pediatrics through the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Child Abuse Preceptorship and has completed formal training in Educational Scholarship through the Academic Pediatric Association’s Educational Scholars Program.
Dr. Cruz has published and presented in the fields of curriculum development, mentorship, quality improvement and violence prevention. He was a key member of the St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children HIV Screening Work Group that increased the rate of routine adolescent HIV screening in the primary care clinic from less than 5% to greater than 95%. In addition he has educated hundreds of health care professionals, regionally and nationally, on the practical implementation of Intimate Partner Violence screening.
Dr. Cruz has received many awards for his leadership skills, humanistic traits, and community service efforts. He is a two-time recipient of the prestigious Golden Apple Award for excellence in teaching as well as the Alpha Omega Alpha Volunteer Clinical Faculty Award from Drexel University College of Medicine. In 2017 Dr. Cruz received the Community Advocate Award from the Lutheran Settlement House for his efforts to prevent childhood exposure to domestic violence. In 2018 he was nominated for a Greater Philadelphia Social Innovation Award
Dr. Cruz enjoys working with children of all ages and has special expertise in managing families exposed to emotional trauma. Currently, Mario resides in Philadelphia with his wife (Patti) and two children (Dominic and Felix).
Dr Cruz’s expertise is in managing children who have experienced significant emotional trauma.
Dr. Cruz has research experience in Intimate Partner Violence and Community Violence prevention. He has also published and/or presented in the areas of mentorship, medical education, burnout prevention, and quality improvement.
Dr. Cruz is board certified in Pediatrics.
Education & Training
Mario Cruz, MD is the Medical Director of the Pediatric and Adolescent Health Center. He received his medical training from Albany Medical College in Albany, New York. His certificate in Educational Scholarship was obtained from the Academic Pediatric Association’s Educational Scholars Program. He also completed Child Abuse training through the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Child Abuse Preceptorship.