Topic: Thomas R. Frieden

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Dr. Thomas R. Frieden is the Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). He was New York City Health Commissioner from 2002–2009.

Frieden graduated from Oberlin College (BA), Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (MD) and Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health (MPH). He completed training in internal medicine at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center and sub-specialty training in infectious diseases at Yale University. One brother, Jeffry Frieden, is a noted international political economist and the Stanfield Professor of International Peace at Harvard University. His other brother, Ken Frieden, the B.G. Rudolph Professor at Syracuse University, specializes in nineteenth-century literature.

Frieden's work on TB in New York fostered public awareness and helped improve public funding (city, state and federal) for tuberculosis control. The epidemic was controlled rapidly, reducing overall incidence by nearly half and cutting multidrug-resistant tuberculosis by 80%. The city's program became a model for tuberculosis control. From 1996 to 2002, Frieden was based in India, assisting with national tuberculosis control efforts. As a medical officer for the World Health Organization on loan from the CDC, he helped the government of India implement the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP). The 2008 RNTCP status report estimates the nationwide program resulted in 8 million treatments and 1.4 million saved lives. While in India, Frieden worked to establish a network of Indian physicians to help India's state and local governments implement the program and helped the Tuberculosis Research Center in Chennai, India, establish a program to monitor the impact of tuberculosis control services.

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