Sarah Park new state epidemiologist
Dr. Sarah Y. Park has been named state epidemiologist and chief of the Hawai'i Department of Health's Disease Outbreak Control Division, overseeing activities related to emerging infections, disease surveillance and investigations, immunizations and public health preparedness.
Former state epidemiologist Paul Effler left the post this summer. Park was deputy chief of the division under Effler and prior to that was an epidemic intelligence service officer assigned to the Respiratory Diseases Branch in the National Center for Infectious Diseases at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"We are very proud to announce the appointment of Dr. Park as the new leader for Hawai'i's disease surveillance and investigation activities," said health director Dr. Chiyome Fukino in a news statement.
"Dr. Park brings a lot of experience to the position as a board certified pediatric infectious diseases specialist. We are confident in her ability to take our disease surveillance to new heights which will help us better protect the public's health."
Park twice received the Outstanding Unit Commendation as part of CDC teams, the first for work on the West Nile Surveillance and Response Team during the 2002 West Nile virus outbreak in the U.S. and the second for work during the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome epidemic in Asia.
Park got her bachelor's degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her medical degree from Boston University.