ATLANTA, Nov. 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Jonathan M. Samet, M.D., M.S., today received the 2016 Fries Prize for Improving Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for his pioneering research and decades of advocacy on the negative impacts of air pollution on health.
Trained in internal medicine, pulmonary medicine and epidemiology, Samet has applied his broad background to identify and address the effects of indoor and outdoor air pollution on the health of children and adults. He is recognized for his research on the health risks of inhaled pollutants—particles and ozone in outdoor air and indoor pollutants including secondhand smoke and radon—and his significant contributions to improve the environment. "Dr. Samet has dedicated his career to protecting people from the dangers of air pollutants and for that we owe him a debt of gratitude," said Dr. James F. Fries, professor emeritus of medicine at Stanford University and chairman of the James F. and Sarah T. Fries Foundation, which in partnership with the CDC Foundation awards the annual Fries Prize for Improving Health. "His research and policy leadership have directly contributed to the avoidance of hundreds of thousands of premature deaths and hospitalizations." Beyond his three decades of leadership and major contributions in the area of tobacco control, Samet and his colleagues have developed innovative approaches to quantifying the health effects of air pollution. This key evidence has already led to changes in public policy responsible for improved air quality standards that will lead to better health for millions of people around the world. "I am deeply honored to receive the 2016 Fries Prize," said Samet. "My work to improve health has been based on the premise that researchers and their findings can make a difference. Looking back over the four decades of my career, I am proud to say that, along with my many colleagues, our research on the risks of environmental pollution has led to enormous gains in environmental quality and health."