Hani K. Atrash, MD, MPH, became Director, Division of Blood Disorders, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in June 2008. Dr. Atrash is responsible for the overall planning, management and evaluation of all programs and activities within the division.
Dr. Atrash received his medical training and completed his residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the American University of Beirut (AUB). In 1979, he joined the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) in the Family Planning Evaluation Division and was assigned to the Tennessee Department of Health during the first year of his EIS. In 1985, Dr. Atrash received a Masters Degree in Public Health (Epidemiology) from Emory University Rollins School of Public Health. And, in 1985-86, Dr. Atrash completed the preventive medicine residency at CDC.
Between 1981 and 1984, Dr. Atrash served as Assistant Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the AUB and was assigned to the state of Bahrain where he served as Public Health Consultant, Manager of the Office of Professional Standards and Systems Analysis, and State Epidemiologist. In 1985, he returned to CDC and joined the Division of Reproductive Health (DRH) where developed several nationally recognized programs in maternal and child health. He led the CDC activities on Safe Motherhood, maternal and child health epidemiology, preterm delivery, and maternal and infant health surveillance and research; he established CDC’s pregnancy mortality surveillance system, the CDC/ACOG Maternal Mortality Study Group, the Annual Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology Conference, and the National Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology Awards. In 2001, Dr. Atrash joined the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities as Associate Director for Program Development where he coordinated and led activities related to global health, workforce development, women’s health, relationships with national organizations and state and local health departments, and minority health. Between 2004 and 2008, Dr. Atrash spearheaded the new CDC initiative on Preconception Health and Health Care.
Dr. Atrash has authored and co-authored over 160 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals, reports, and book chapters. He serves as Temporary Advisor to the World Health Organization, holds an academic appointment as Clinical Associate Professor at the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, is a member of the Editorial Board of the Maternal and Child Health Journal and serves on a variety of key national committees. Dr. Atrash has received numerous honors and awards within CDC and at the national level for his leadership and accomplishments.