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The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has named Dr. Jonathan Fielding, a UCLA professor of public health and pediatrics, as director of public health and health officer for Los Angeles County. Fielding has served as interim health officer since December 1996.
In his role, Fielding will oversee all county public health programs, with annual expenditures of about $400 million. In addition, he will have responsibility for health planning, policy development and evaluation.
"I look forward to continuing my role in the county's efforts to improve and expand its public health programs," Fielding said. "I hope my appointment also will help continue the growing ties between the county health department, the UCLA School of Public Health and other academic institutions."
Los Angeles County's public health programs are charged with safeguarding all of the county's residents from threats such as infectious disease outbreaks and environmental hazards.
A former health commissioner of the state of Massachusetts, Fielding has been a professor of public health and pediatrics at UCLA since 1979 and is a co-director of the UCLA Center for Healthier Children, Families and Communities. Fielding has degrees in medicine, public health and business administration. He will retain his position at UCLA on a part-time basis while he serves the county.
The author of more than 150 publications, Fielding is a member of the prestigious Institute of Medicine and is well-known for his work in disease prevention and health promotion. Currently, he serves as president of the American College of Preventive Medicine, vice chairman of Partnership for Prevention and editor of the Annual Review of Public Health.