- Alfred Sommer (ophthalmologist)
Alfred (Al) Sommer is a prominent American
ophthalmologistand academicat the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Sommer was born in 1942 in New York City and graduated from
Union Collegein Schenectady, New York in 1963. Sommer has an MD from Harvard Medical School(1967) and an MHS from the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health (1973). He is professor of Epidemiology and International Health, as well as Ophthalmology (at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine). He was dean of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health from 1990-2005.
His research interests include outcomes assessment,
child survival, epidemiology of visual disorders, glaucoma, vitamin Adeficiency, blindnessprevention strategies, cost-benefit analysis, the growing interface between medicine and public health, and clinical guidelines.
He was a recipient of the
Danone International Prize for Nutritionin 2001 and the Albert Lasker Award for Clinical Medical Researchin 1997.
In the 1970s, Sommer and his colleagues determined that children who were deficient in vitamin A deficiency were at greater risk of dying from childhood illnesses like measles and diarrhea. He further went on to prove that vitamin A supplementation could reduce child mortality from 23 to 34 percent. [ [http://www.jhsph.edu/publichealthnews/press_releases/sommer_vitA.html]
Sommer's vitamin A research was featured in the 2005 PBS documentary Rx for Survival. [ [http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/rxforsurvival/series/champions/alfred_sommer.html]
* [http://faculty.jhsph.edu/?F=Alfred&L=Sommer Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health biography]
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