Harris named Alabama's newest state health officer

Harris named Alabama's newest state health officer
Dr. Scott Harris has been named Alabama's state health officer. (Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Dr. Scott Harris has been named Alabama's newest state health officer by the Alabama State Committee of Public Health after six months in the role in an acting capacity.?

"I feel honored and privileged," Harris, the twelfth person to ever fill the role, said.

Harris brings a wide range of knowledge and extensive experience to the position with nearly 20 years in private practice.

A graduate of Harding University in Arkansas, he attended medical school at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine and served his residency and internship at Carraway Methodist Medical Center before returning to UAB to complete a fellowship in infectious diseases. I

In 2017, he was awarded a master's degree in public health from the UAB School of Public Health with a concentration in health policy.

Harris practiced infectious disease medicine at Decatur General Hospital and Parkway Medical Center. He also served on the Medical Executive Committee, medicine department chairman and director of multiple committees including infection control, pharmacy and therapeutics, and the surgical care improvement project. He is past chairman and current member of the Decatur Morgan Hospital Foundation.

In 2005, he became medical director at the Decatur-Morgan Community Free Clinic, a non-profit clinic that offers health care and dental care at no charge to low income, medically uninsured local residents. The clinic relies heavily on volunteers, including community members.

Harris also has served on many international medical missions to Central America, South America and Africa.

He joined the Alabama Department of Public Health in 2015 as area health officer for seven North Alabama counties.

The Talladega native is a fellow of the American College of Physicians (FACP), Infectious Disease Society of America (FIDSA), and a credentialed HIV specialist, American Academy of HIV Medicine.

Harris currently co-chairs the Alabama Opioid Overdose and Addiction Council.

The ADPH employs approximately 3,000 and has an annual budget of $694 million.

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