On 1 January 2019, MSc Epidemiology alumnus Professor Rakesh Aggarwal MBBS MD DM was appointed the new Director of Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education & Research (JIPMER), based in Puducherry, Southern India.
Professor Aggarwal is widely known for his work with Gastrointestinal and Liver diseases, in particular Viral Hepatitis. As an undergraduate medicine student from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, he went onto obtain his post-graduate qualifications in Gastroenterology from the Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India. As part of his training he was involved in laboratory research at the Hepatitis Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, USA. He achieved his Master’s degree in Epidemiology at The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in 2008.
Previous to his appointment as Director of JIPMER last month, since 1991 Professor Aggarwal has been a faculty member and served in a variety of other capacities in the field of Gastroenterology at the Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India. Awarded the National Bioscience Award for Career Development by the Department of Biotechnology of the Government of India in 2002, he has been recognised as a leader in his field. Between 2014 – 2017 he was a member of the WHO’s Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee on Viral Hepatitis, and is currently a member of the WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization.
Professor Aggarwal is an esteemed researcher, teacher and physician. His research has included clinical, epidemiology, laboratory and economic aspects of Viral Hepatitis. His other interests include vaccination, epidemiology, biostatistics, research methodology, scientific communication, journal editing, health economics, and medical education among other areas.
Elected as a fellow of all three major Indian science academies; Indian Academy of Sciences, Indian National Science Academy, National Academy of Sciences (India) and National Academy of Medical Sciences (India), Professor Aggarwal sits on a number of national and international committees, panels and policy-making groups.