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TB Notes 3, 2007
Director's Letter
Highlights from State and Local Programs
  Georgia Statewide TB Training
NTCA Workshop Poster Contest
2007 EIS Conference a Success for DTBE
National Tuberculosis Indicators Project (NTIP): An Update
Evaluation Team Visits TB Isolation Village in Thailand
TB Education and Training Network Updates
  Member Highlight
  Cultural Competency Subcommittee Update
Communications, Education, and Behavioral Studies Branch Update
  A Review of DTBE’s First Year Using the CDC INFO Call Center
Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch Updates
  TB/HIV Surveillance in Ethiopia
TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium Updates
  2007 World TB Day: TBESC Sites Across the U.S. Get Involved
  “The First Global Symposium on Interferon-Gamma Assays” 2007
New CDC Publications
Personnel Notes
Calendar of Events
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TB Notes Newsletter

No. 3, 2007


In Memoriam

George W. Comstock, MD, an epidemiologist who made major contributions to the treatment and prevention of TB and whom many peers regarded as the world's foremost expert on the disease, died on July 15 at the age of 92. The cause was given as prostate cancer. Two studies by Dr. Comstock in the 1940s and 1950s had a critical impact on the federal government's response to TB. One led public health officials to reject the use of BCG, which had been under consideration for routine use among American children. The second led to the adoption of isoniazid (INH) for the treatment of TB.

In the late 1940s, the US government wanted to further test a BCG vaccine that had been found effective in two trials in the United States. Dr. Comstock led a team in conducting BCG studies among schoolchildren in Georgia and Alabama from 1947 to 1950. The studies found that the vaccine was largely ineffective. Public health officials then decided against routinely vaccinating children in the United States with BCG. On receiving an award from the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases for his work, Dr. Comstock said he suspected he was the first person to be so honored for persuading people not to use a vaccine.

In 1957, Dr. Comstock volunteered to conduct a U.S. PHS study of TB patterns in Alaska, where one of every 30 natives was in a TB hospital, saying he saw an opportunity to study preventive treatment. He conducted a controlled trial in 29 villages near Bethel, Alaska, where TB was rampant. The study showed the effectiveness of INH in preventing TB: after a year, INH produced a 70 percent decline in cases of the disease; a follow-up study 5 years later showed the drug's benefit had been sustained. In the trial, Dr. Comstock and his family took INH themselves to convince the participants of his belief in the therapy's safety. After the trial, Dr. Comstock gave INH to those who had received the placebo. To this day, DTBE’s guidelines on INH therapy still use Dr. Comstock's data.

Dr. Comstock was born in Niagara Falls, New York, in 1915. He attended Antioch College, and later earned a medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1941 and a master's degree and a doctorate in public health from the University of Michigan and Johns Hopkins, respectively. He interned with the Public Health Service and later became chief of its TB epidemiologic studies unit. After retiring in 1962, he moved to Johns Hopkins. From 1979 to 1988, he was editor of the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Dr. Comstock founded the Johns Hopkins Training Center for Public Health Research and Prevention in Hagerstown, Maryland, where for 30 years he oversaw community-based research studies on cancer, heart disease, and an eye disease known as histoplasmosis. The center was renamed for Dr. Comstock in 2005. He was a lifelong advocate of public health efforts and expressed disappointment in later years that more doctors were not devoting their services to it.

In March 2006, DTBE was honored by the presence of Dr. Comstock and his wife at a Brown Bag presentation in which he gave informal remarks and musings about his work and research, then answered questions from the audience. As Dr. Castro has noted, our best tribute to Dr. Comstock's life is to carry on until the eventual elimination of TB in the United States.

The following was contributed by John Seggerson:

Tom Smith, a former CDC Public Health Advisor (PHA), died on July 24 from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). He was 73. Tom served as a CDC PHA in Philadelphia’s STD program in the early 1960s and became one of the first CDC PHAs assigned to TB. He served for a number of years as the Senior CDC TB representative in Maine and then as the Senior TB representative in Philadelphia for 4-5 years before accepting an assignment in the Philadelphia PHS regional office. He retired from PHS about 15 years ago. He was well liked and was often referred to as "Nerves," a nicknamed conferred by friend and PHA John Supinski, who gave nick-names to many PHAs of that era. Many PHAs remember that, during Tom's assignment in Philadelphia, the city program became the first in the country to use rifampin, then newly developed, as a routine first-line drug for treatment of TB.  Tom was widely respected and appreciated by his colleagues. He will be very much missed by his family and by many PHAs and other public health workers who remember Tom fondly.

Emily Bloss, MPH, PhD, is a new Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer who has been assigned to the International Research and Programs Branch (IRPB) for a 2-year EIS term. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, Emily worked in Chicago for a number of years as a Research Coordinator for orthopedic clinical outcomes research. Upon receiving her masters degree in anthropology at the University of Illinois in Chicago, she pursued a masters degree in public health from the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the same University. She had the opportunity to conduct the field work for her master’s capstone project in western Kenya as a National Security Education Program (NSEP) Boren Fellow. She continued her studies at the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine at Tulane University where she completed her PhD in International Health and Development. Her dissertation focused on gender differences in risk factors for TB among pastoralist groups in northern Kenya. The field work for Emily’s doctorate was supported by the U.S. Fulbright Award for Sub-Saharan Africa and the Woodrow Wilson-Johnson and Johnson Dissertation Fellowship in Women’s Health; she worked in collaboration with the National Leprosy and Tuberculosis Program and the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI). Emily's international experience also includes work in Nicaragua and Sri Lanka. Emily’s assignment began in July 2007.

Jeuneviette Bontemps-Jones, MPH, CHES, of the Communications Team of the Communications, Education, and Behavioral Studies Branch, has left DTBE for a position with the American Cancer Society. Jeuneviette came to DTBE a year ago as an Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH) fellow. Her work within CEBSB included planning, developing, revising, implementing, and evaluating educational materials, print-based as well as web-based. Jeuneviette earned her BA degree in psychology from Columbia University, NY, then taught elementary school for 3 years in Queens, NY. She then enrolled in the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and received her MPH degree in health education. Before starting her ASPH fellowship, Jeuneviette worked at the Morehouse School of Medicine as a Research Coordinator in their Community Oriented Primary Care Department. Her last day in the office was July 26. We wish her luck in her new position!

Betty Bouler of the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch retired on July 31, 2007. Betty began her federal career in April 1972 as an officer trainee for the US Air Force (USAF) in San Antonio, Texas, then spent 3 years as a Procurement Officer before resigning and moving back to her home state of Mississippi. In 1980 she joined the Young Adult Conservation Corps grants program of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service in Atlanta. This was one of Betty’s favorite jobs, as it required frequent travel to inspect projects in Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, and Oklahoma, and all the projects were in state and local parks. When that program was discontinued in 1981, Betty went back to the USAF in Warner Robins, GA, as a buyer of computers. It was there that she met and married her husband, John. Seeking career advancement, Betty successfully competed for a position with CDC in Atlanta. She moved to Atlanta in May 1984, and spent over 17 years in CDC’s Procurement and Grants Office (PGO). Betty awarded the first contracts for an AIDS hotline, the AIDS advertising campaign, and an AIDS clearinghouse before she moved on to a variety of supervisory positions for over 15 years. In 2001 Betty came to work with the Tuberculosis Epidemiologic Studies Consortium (TBESC). She was with the consortium for over 5 years and participated in the award of Task Orders 3–18. She played a key role in every aspect of building the TBESC, and provided significant input and assistance in all contractual matters related to awarding well over 100 contracts. She also provided critical guidance on the consortium's infrastructure, budgetary, and scientific requirements. Betty's knowledge, experience, and dedication led to the success of the TBESC, and she will be greatly missed.

Michael Chen, PhD, a mathematical statistician, has joined the Division in the Data Management and Statistics Branch. He comes to us from the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Reproductive Health. He received a bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics and a master’s degree in Mathematics and Statistics from the University of Minnesota, and received a PhD degree in Computational Mathematics from Florida State University in 1993. After graduation, Michael worked as an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Western Illinois University. In 1994, he entered the field of public health with the Florida State Agency for Health Care Administration and the Florida Medicaid Program, where he served as a senior statistical analyst and a team leader for health care program planning, analysis, and evaluation. Since joining CDC in 2002, Michael has provided biostatistical support to several projects, including the Assisted Reproductive Technology Surveillance System, and has conducted international surveys research on maternal mortality. He specializes in mathematical modeling and statistical methodology. Michael's time will be devoted mostly to supporting the work of the International Research and Programs Branch and the Mycobacteriology Laboratory Branch, as well as special (nonclinical trials) studies in the Clinical and Health Services Research Branch.

Jack Crawford, PhD, microbiologist, Mycobacteriology Laboratory Branch, DTBE, retired on June 1. Jack received his BS degree from the Ohio State University and doctorate in microbiology from the University of Florida and completed postdoctoral training at Tufts Medical School, Boston. He began his studies of mycobacteria in 1977 under the mentorship of Dr. Joseph Bates at the VA Medical Center, Little Rock. He was one of the first researchers to apply molecular biology methods to the study of mycobacteria, starting with demonstration of plasmids in mycobacteria in 1978. The research of his student Kathleen Eisenach led to the development of the IS6110-RFLP method for genotyping M. tuberculosis. He came to CDC in 1990 to head the mycobacteriology reference diagnostic laboratory in NCID with a primary goal of increasing its molecular diagnostic capability. The outbreaks of MDR TB in Miami and New York City provided an immediate challenge requiring rapid implementation of the new genotyping methods. The results firmly established the role of genotyping in support of outbreak investigations and prompted the establishment of regional genotyping laboratories in 1993 to provide service to TB programs nationwide.  He oversaw the laboratory activities of the National Genotyping and Surveillance Network, 1995–2002, which demonstrated the value of routine, large scale genotyping, and developed and implemented the current National Genotyping Service which began in 2004. Beginning in 1997, he directed the applied research group, which studies improved molecular methods for genotyping, species identification, and detection of drug resistance. The laboratory branch merged with DTBE in 2004. Jack has over 100 publications and four patents; in addition, he received the Mackel and Shepard Awards from CDC and the Gardner Middlebrook Award from Becton Dickinson. Jack and Kay have moved to Gainesville, Florida, where he plans to relax, tinker with old cars, and ride his beloved Triumph and Norton motorcycles.

Mitesh Desai, MD, MPH, has joined the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch (SEOIB) for a 2-year term as an EIS Officer that began in July 2007. He completed a primary care internal medicine residency at Johns Hopkins University, where his training focused on an urban population disproportionately affected by poverty, addiction, and HIV. Mitesh attended the University of Pittsburgh and graduated with a BS degree in neuroscience, finished his medical degree at the New York University School of Medicine, and while in medical school also completed the requirements for an MPH degree from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. During his MD and MPH studies, he interned with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and worked on HIV testing and health literacy campaigns. In addition to biking, cooking, and occasional scuba-diving, Mitesh comes to DTBE with an interest in advocacy for the underserved.

Divia Forbes joined the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch (SEOIB) on April 30 as a Public Health Analyst. She will be assuming many of the duties formerly handled by Tammy Roman, in addition to other responsibilities. She obtained her bachelors degree in business management from Kaplan University and will be pursuing a masters degree in public health from Benedictine University. In 2001 Divia started working for CDC in the National Immunization Program. In March 2002 she joined NCHHSTP in the Division of HIV/AIDS, where she served as the Resource Coordinator and Technical Monitor for grants and contracts, task orders, and activities that support branch conferences and workshops. She served as an active member of the branch’s Continuous Quality Improvement and Implementation Team (CQIIT), which coordinates the dissemination of evidence-based HIV prevention interventions for African-American women. Some of the interventions were Sisters Informing Sisters about Topics on AIDS (SISTA); Sistering, Informing, Healing, Living, Empowering (SIHLE), for girls; and one for HIV-infected women called Women Involved in Life Learning from Other Women (WILLOW). Divia participated in several national HIV/AIDS conferences, seminars, and workshops. She also served as a Program Analyst in the Global AIDS Program on a 60-day detail, and served as a Grants Management Specialist with PGO on a 120-day detail. Divia is also fluent in Spanish. She has been married for 27 years to Theodore Forbes and has three wonderful children.

Maryam Haddad has been selected as the new Team Lead for the Outbreak Investigations Team in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch, DTBE. Maryam received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Furman University and her Associate in Health Science degree from Greenville Technical College, both in Greenville, South Carolina. She completed simultaneously her Master of Public Health, Master of Science in Nursing, and Family Nurse Practitioner specialty training degree from Emory University in Atlanta in 2001. She joined CDC in 2001 as a state-based Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer in Utah, where she helped manage the Utah state public health surveillance team during the 2002 Olympic Winter Games. While in Utah, she also led investigations of invasive pneumococcal disease and outbreaks of varicella, calicivirus, coccidioidomycosis, and West Nile virus. In 2003, Maryam joined the Outbreak Investigations Team of DTBE in Atlanta as an epidemiologist. In that capacity, she has become well-known to staff members at headquarters as well as to state and local TB controllers for her investigations of 11 TB outbreaks. Especially memorable was Maryam’s hard work during the Hurricane Katrina deployment, when she worked with other DTBE staff members to assist state and local partners to account for every displaced TB patient and to ensure that each had a secure supply of antituberculosis drugs. She also has become well-known for her innovative work on social network analysis and its application to understanding the complex patterns that occur among cases and contacts and where they intersect with one another. Maryam assumed her new duties on July 9, 2007.

Andrea (Annie) Hoopes, who was the first CDC Experience Fellow assigned to DTBE’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch (SEOIB), completed her 1-year fellowship at the end of May 2007. Annie's year with DTBE was filled with a multitude of activities and accomplishments. These included evaluating the usage of the Online TB Information System (OTIS) and presenting her findings at an SEOIB Branch meeting; attending the National Jewish Hospital TB Clinical Intensive Course in Denver and the TB Program Manager's Course in Atlanta; working with Lori Armstrong and Steve Kammerer in analyzing more than 10 years’ worth of data in the NTSS database for characteristics and trends in INH-monoresistant TB in the US and presenting preliminary findings of the analysis at a Brown Bag and as a poster at the ATS meeting in San Francisco; writing as first author and submitting for publication a manuscript entitled, "Isoniazid Mono-Resistant Tuberculosis in the United States, Characteristics and Trends, 1993-2005"; participating with Maryam Haddad and Ann Buff on two TB outbreak investigations; and partnering with IRPB staff Peter Cegielski and Allison Taylor and MLB staff Tracy Dalton for 2 weeks in South Africa to collect data for the Preserving Effectiveness of TB Treatment (PETT) (for MDR TB) study. Annie has returned to medical school at the Ohio State University College of Medicine, where she has commenced her third year of studies and first year of clinical rotations. We miss her and her home-baked goodies! 

Annie was one of eight medical students chosen from among 50 who competed for the 1-year applied epidemiology fellowship. The CDC Experience: Applied Epidemiology fellowship at CDC provides medical students with a hands-on training experience in epidemiology and public health, with the guidance of experienced epidemiologists.

Kashef Ijaz MD, MPH, was selected as Chief, Field Services and Evaluation Branch, DTBE. Kashef received his medical degree from King Edward Medical College, University of Punjab, Pakistan, and his MPH degree in epidemiology from the College of Public Health, University of Oklahoma. After completing his training, he worked as medical epidemiologist with the Division of TB at the Arkansas Department of Health and University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, where he held an appointment as Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care. During his 7 years at the Arkansas Department of Health, he worked with Drs. William W. Stead, Joseph H. Bates, Kathleen Eisenach, and Don Cave, all nationally and internationally renowned TB experts. While in Arkansas, Kashef investigated numerous TB outbreaks in prisons, homeless shelters, nursing homes, and other high-risk population settings. As a result of his field work in Arkansas, he acquired extensive TB program experience and wrote state requests for CDC cooperative agreements and progress reports. He was also one of the principal investigators for the Arkansas sentinel surveillance site for CDC’s National Genotyping and Surveillance Network and the principal investigator for the Arkansas TB Epidemiologic Studies Consortium site before joining the Outbreak Investigations Team in the Surveillance, Epidemiology and Outbreak Investigations Branch (SEOIB), DTBE, in January 2002. Shortly after joining DTBE, Kashef was selected to be the Team Leader for the Outbreak Investigations Team, SEOIB. Since that time, he has been instrumental in developing an excellent team of epidemiologists to investigate TB outbreaks in the United States and other countries. He has been an important liaison for cross-branch coordination related to outbreak response. During his tenure as team leader, his team investigated more than 30 domestic and international TB outbreaks. Kashef has also helped train numerous Epidemic Intelligence Service Officers. He has authored and coauthored several publications in peer-reviewed journals and has presented extensively on TB both at national and international meetings.

Scott McCoy, MEd, has taken an early disability retirement from DTBE/CDC. He came to DTBE in 1999 as a Health Education Specialist in the Communications, Education, and Behavioral Studies Branch (CEBSB). He came to DTBE with extensive experience in developing, implementing, and evaluating educational programs and materials around the issues of alcohol and substance abuse. Prior to accepting the CEBSB position, Scott had already been collaborating with DTBE for a year and a half in his role as Marketing Communications Specialist with the NCHSTP Office of Communications (OC). In that position, he was the OC lead for the National TB Communication Plan and the TB Partnership Initiative. While in CEBSB, Scott juggled a variety of projects. He took over the planning, coordination, and implementation of the annual Program Managers Course, and carried out this complex responsibility smoothly and expertly each year. He was also regularly involved in coordinating World TB Day activities for the division and for U.S. TB control staff. Scott routinely attended conferences and meetings in order to distribute, display, and discuss TB materials. Other accomplishments include the development and printing of materials such as Forging Partnerships to Eliminate TB; the Cohort Review Process education project; and many other TB health education materials and projects. For example, he annually updated and revised the DTBE Trends document and the “Now Is the Time!” brochure, and developed and revised many TB fact sheets and other educational materials. He was a member of the DTBE Evaluation Team Workgroup as well as a member of the TB Education and Training Network (TB ETN) conference planning workgroup. Whenever Scott was involved in a project, you knew the results would be creative and interesting. To the sadness of Scott’s many friends inside as well as outside of CDC, Scott suffered a heart attack in 2006 and has been on medical leave for much of the time since then. Although we will miss seeing Scott on a daily basis, we recognize that his full recuperation is of paramount importance. Thus, we bid Scott all best wishes for a full recovery, and look forward to seeing him at future DTBE social events.

Eugene McCray, MD, has been selected as Chief, International Research and Programs Branch (IRPB), DTBE. A career officer with the U.S. Public Health Service, CAPT McCray retires from the Commissioned Corps effective September 1, 2007, and joins DTBE as a full-time civil service employee on September 2.  His extensive experience in global health as well as his technical and diplomatic skills will be an asset to DTBE and the Branch.

Dr. McCray started his CDC career as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer in 1983 and has since served in various capacities throughout CDC. After completing the EIS program in 1985, Eugene worked as a staff epidemiologist in the Hospital Infections Program (precursor to the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion), National Center for Infectious Diseases, where his work focused on problems of hospital-acquired infections, including evaluating the risk for transmission of HIV in hospitals following needlestick exposures. He left CDC in July 1986 to work in the private sector as a clinician for 2 years. Eugene returned to CDC in July 1988 to join the Division of HIV/AIDS, where his work focused on establishing programs for sentinel HIV surveillance in special U.S. populations. From July 1993 to February 2000, he served as Chief of the TB Surveillance Section, DTBE, where he directed national surveillance for TB disease and provided technical assistance to a number of countries in South and East Africa on TB and HIV/AIDS surveillance and operations research. Eugene returns to DTBE after many years with the Coordinating Office for Global Health (COGH), where he served as the Acting Deputy Director, COGH, and Director, Office of Capacity Development and Program Coordination since November 2004. Prior to joining COGH, he was the Director of the Global AIDS Program (GAP) during 2000-2004. As GAP Director, he was responsible for overseeing all activities of CDC's international HIV/AIDS assistance program with offices in 25 countries and three regions around the world including Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean/Latin America regions.

Eugene holds a Doctor of Medicine degree from the Bowman Gray School of Medicine, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He completed his internal medicine residency at North Carolina Memorial Hospital at UNC, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and an Infectious Diseases Fellowship at University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. He has published numerous scholarly articles on public health, especially concerning TB and HIV/AIDS, and has been deserving of numerous awards for his scientific and public health contributions, including the USPHS Distinguished Service Medal and the CDC/ATSDR William C. Watson Medal of Excellence award. We welcome Eugene back to DTBE!

Ted Misselbeck, DTBE Public Health Advisor, has accepted a promotion to join the Houston, Texas, TB program. His report date was June 24, 2007. Ted is leaving a position assigned to the State of Tennessee Health Department TB Program in Nashville, where he has served since 2004. While in Tennessee, his area of responsibilities included 1) serving as the State TB Genotyping Program Leader, which consisted of assisting in the development of a computer-based combination genotype/RVCT data system, design of a user-friendly local program genotyping kit, and initial launch of the statewide TB Genotyping Program, and 2) serving as the Tennessee prisons TB coordinator and acting as a liaison with local, state, and prison officials in managing two TB outbreaks in the state prison system. These duties included developing a database, insuring prompt treatment of new inmate suspects and contacts, and integrating and utilizing the prison cell/bed locator database system in identifying locations of inmates during their infectious periods. Ted also worked on the Memphis TB Program Improvement Program, a project requiring weekly travel between Nashville and Memphis. Ted provided leadership in developing and establishing new TB program methods in the Memphis/ Shelby County TB program. A 72-item improvement plan was designed, which included hiring 15 new personnel; improving the relationship between the Memphis and State TB Health Programs; and establishing several improvements such as a new pharmacy/DOT system, laboratory collection methods, a waiting-time reduction Fast-Track clinic for LTBI, and a quarterly case review meeting. Ted was deployed to Louisiana during Hurricane Katrina/Hurricane Rita and served as a national locator/manager for finding all the TB patients from New Orleans who were displaced by Hurricane Katrina.

From November 2002 to October 2004, Ted was assigned to the City of St. Louis Health Department. While in St. Louis, Ted's responsibilities included efforts to contain a TB outbreak in the city's largest homeless shelter. During a 3-year period, 19 cases and two deaths were reported. Ted was the lead coordinator of an outbreak team that comprised 11 different agencies and vendors. Ted also assisted in getting two pieces of legislation introduced and passed by the Board of Aldermen and signed into law by the mayor. One bill established a TB Ordinance which permitted a nominal fee to be charged for TB skin testing required by clients for pre-employment; all generated funds are placed into a designated account to be used exclusively to purchase TB treatment incentives and enablers. Another bill updated a century-old quarantine law to include current language terms in reference to bioterrorism, isolation, and quarantine.

Ted’s first assignment with CDC DTBE was with the Palm Beach Health Department TB program beginning in January 2001. His duties there included DOT, hospital interviews of new suspects, and case management. Ted assisted in the county's transition from manual to computer documentation reporting. Prior to joining DTBE, Ted worked as a primary therapist with Seabrook House in Seabrook, New Jersey, and as a pharmaceutical sales representative with Sandoz Pharmaceuticals in Middlesex County, New Jersey, and Staten Island, New York.

Heather Peto joins DTBE in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Outbreak Investigations Branch (SEOIB) in September as the second CDC Experience Fellow to be successfully matched with that branch. Heather was one of eight medical students chosen from among 45 who competed for this 1-year applied epidemiology fellowship. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, where she received a bachelor of science degree in both biology and political science. She is presently a third-year medical student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health. She is interested in pursuing a combined residency in internal medicine and pediatrics, and has a strong interest in public health and community health. Heather interned during her first summer in medical school as a World Health Organization Global Health Fellow. In that position, she assisted with the evaluation of a health service availability mapping (SAM) strategy that combined district-level survey information with GIS data to map distribution of basic health services in developing countries. In addition, Heather has used her Spanish language skills while participating in a community health assessment in Ecuador and while performing volunteer medical work at a clinic for uninsured Spanish-speaking patients in Madison. Bienvenidos a DTBE, Heather!

Charles Rose, PhD, a mathematical statistician, joined DTBE in the Data Management and Statistics Branch on May 29, 2007. Charles attended Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona, from 1992 to 1996, graduating with a BSc degree in Forest Resources. He then attended graduate school at Oklahoma State University (OSU) in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and the University of Georgia (UGA) in Athens, Georgia, receiving an MSc degree in Forest Biometrics in 1998 from OSU and an MSc degree in Statistics and a PhD degree in Forest Statistics in 2002 from UGA. Charles began his career at CDC in August 2002 with the National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID). Since 2003, after the CDC reorganization, he has been the principal statistician for the safety analysis of the anthrax vaccine clinical trial. The interim analysis was conducted in 2004 and the final analysis will begin in mid to late 2008.  In addition, he has worked extensively with a huge surveillance database (approximately 1 billion records) to conduct postmarketing anthrax vaccine safety studies and to study the recent multiple vaccinations and adverse events. Charles’s background within CDC has enabled him to design and analyze epidemiological studies using standard techniques such as logistic regression, Poisson, Cox proportional hazards, and zero-inflated modeling, as well as methods for identifying clusters using Bayesian methods. He has made presentations to a diverse spectrum of audiences that have included epidemiologists, medical personnel, and statisticians at venues ranging from statistical to public health forums and conferences. His primary project here in DTBE will be the development of a TB transmission model to assess the relative impact of potential TB interventions that will enable us to reach the goal of TB elimination. Welcome to DTBE!

Rinn Song, MD, is a new Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer working in DTBE. Rinn joined the International Research and Programs Branch (IRPB) in July 2007. He arrives from New York City, where he completed a pediatrics residency at New York University/Bellevue Hospital. During his residency, he worked in a clinic for HIV-infected children in Kenya on clinical and laboratory HIV research projects. An accomplished oboe player, Rinn received his undergraduate degree from the Humboldt University in Berlin and attended medical school at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, where he was selected for exchange medical student programs at the University of Paris, the University of Barcelona, Harvard Medical School, and Duke University. He received his MD degree and a doctoral degree in medicine with honors from the Ludwig-Maximilians University. His interests include TB/HIV coinfection and pediatric TB.


Released October 2008
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention
Division of Tuberculosis Elimination -

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