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Highest prize in public health awarded to Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg

New York, NY May 17, 2011 Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health today announced that it will award the highest prize in public healththe Frank A. Calderone Prizeto Harvey V. Fineberg, MD, PhD, President of the Institute of Medicine, the health branch of the National Academy of Sciences. The Frank A. Calderone Prize in Public Health, overseen by the Mailman School, is presented to an individual who has made a transformational contribution in the field of public health.

The award recognizes Dr. Fineberg's outstanding work in the fields of health policy and medical decision-making during his long career at Harvard University and later at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). An expert on the impact and broad possibilities of medical innovation and change, he has brought a new awareness and perspective to such issues as how best to roll out new medical technology, how to decideas individuals and as a societywhich treatments to use in complex and risky situations and how to cope with newly emerging illnesses and threatened epidemics.

"Throughout his career, Harvey Fineberg has helped shape our nation's understanding of the importance of disease prevention as a critical component of our health system and the value of investing in high quality public health education to accomplish this. At the Institute of Medicine, he has advanced the goals of improving the quality of medical care and integrating prevention into our nation's health agenda. We are delighted to honor his distinguished work," said Mailman School Dean Linda P. Fried, MD, MPH.

Dean Fried serves with five other public health leaders on the Calderone Prize selection committee. Said committee member Peter Piot, MD, PhD, dean of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, of this year's prizewinner: "Dr. Harvey Fineberg has made a lasting impact on public health worldwide through his research on risk and decision-making, his advocacy for prevention, his relentless promotion of human rights, and the training of several generations of public health scholars and practitioners."

Dr. Fineberg will accept the Calderone Prize at the Mailman School gala on October 18, 2011 at the Pierre in New York City. He will give a major address the following day at Columbia's Mailman School. He is the tenth winner of the Calderone Prize, which has been awarded every two to three years since 1992. The $15,000 prize is named for the late Dr. Frank A. Calderone, who was a leading figure in the New York City Department of Health and a pioneering officer of the World Health Organization.

"I am truly honored and humbled by this award and for the extraordinary recognition," said Dr. Fineberg. "It is a privilege to join the distinguished group of past recipients. I am grateful for the opportunity to have worked with so many able colleagues over the years and to continue our collective efforts to help advance the public's health."

Past Calderone Prize winners include C. Everett Koop, MD, ScD, former Surgeon General of the United States; William Foege, MD, MPH, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland and U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, and Susan Baker, MPH, a pioneering researcher in injury prevention at Johns Hopkins University.

This year's prizewinner, Harvey V. Fineberg, was Provost of Harvard University from 1997 to 2001, following 13 years as Dean of the Harvard School of Public Health. His research has focused on policy development and implementation, assessment of medical technology, evaluation and use of vaccines, and dissemination of medical innovations.

As IOM's president, Dr. Fineberg oversees the efforts of nine boards and 15 standing forums and roundtables engaged in providing objective, expert advice on the nation's most pressing questions about health and health care. Prior to his election, he contributed to IOM's work as chair or member of panels that dealt with health policy issues such as improving HIV/AIDS prevention to policies and regulations that shape the development of new medical technology. Dr. Fineberg also served as a member of the Public Health Council of Massachusetts (1976-1979), as chairman of the Health Care Technology Study Section of the National Center for Health Services Research (1982-1985), and as president of the Association of Schools of Public Health (1995-1996). He helped found and served as president of the Society for Medical Decision Making and recently chaired the World Health Organization's committee to review the functioning of the International Health Regulations and performance during the H1N1 influenza pandemic of 2009.

Dr. Fineberg co-authored the books Clinical Decision Analysis, Innovators in Physician Education, and The Swine Flu Affair. He co-edited books on such topics as AIDS prevention, vaccine safety, and understanding risk in society and authored numerous scientific papers. Among the honorary degrees and awards he has received are the Stephen Smith Medal for Distinguished Contributions in Public Health from the New York Academy of Medicine. He earned his bachelor's and doctoral degrees from Harvard.


Contact: Stephanie Berger
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health

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