Edward J. Sondik, Ph.D. New Director of NCHS

For Release: Immediately (April 1, 1996)

Contact: Victor Zonana (202) 690-6343, CDC Press Office (404) 639-3286

HHS Secretary Donna E. Shalala has announced that Edward J. Sondik, Ph.D., has been named the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Dr. Sondik will also serve as senior advisor to the secretary of health and human services on health statistics.

As the director of the National Center for Health Statistics, Dr. Sondik will provide national leadership in health statistics and epidemiology. NCHS is responsible for the design and implementation of statistical and information systems that guide actions and policies to improve the health of the American people.

As the senior advisor to the secretary on health statistics, Dr. Sondik will also provide Shalala with technical and policy advice on statistical and health information issues, and will serve on the HHS Data Council. This new council will oversee the development of efficient data collection strategies that enhance the analytical capabilities of HHS, while ensuring that no unnecessary burdens are placed on Americans who participate in the Department’s health surveys.

“To get to where we’re going, we have to know where we’ve been,” Shalala said. “Dr. Sondik, NCHS and the new Data Council will help us develop the blueprints for a healthier America.”

Shalala said the new Data Council will be co-chaired by Health Care Financing Administrator Bruce C. Vladeck and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health Policy Jack Ebeler.

Shalala has charged the Council with developing a department-wide data collection strategy, including coordination of surveys and oversight of surveys and general statistical analysis.

Dr. Sondik, a native of Connecticut, received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Connecticut and his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. He has a 20-year career at the National Institutes of Health, beginning as chief, Program Analysis and Evaluation Branch, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Moving to the National Cancer Institute in 1982, he served as associate director of the Surveillance Program before being appointed deputy director, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control in 1989. Most recently he was acting director of the National Cancer Institute.

For questions about NCHS, please contact the NCHS Office of Public Affairs (301) 436-7551, or via e-mail at paoquery@cdc.gov.


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