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General Preventive Medicine Residency


Program Director

Miriam Alexander, MD, MPH

Miriam Alexander, MD, MPH, currently serves as the program director for the residency program, a position she has held since 1996. In this capacity, she has taught and mentored more than 100 practicing preventive medicine residents.

Dr. Alexander also serves as the director of the Mid-Atlantic Public Health Training Center. In her role with the Mid-Atlantic Public Health Training Center, she serves as an instructor providing training to practicing members of the public health workforce in the Mid-Atlantic region. Dr. Alexander actively teaches and precepts medical students in the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and is the primary instructor of the “Introduction to Public Health” course on the undergraduate campus.

Dr. Alexander joined the faculty of Johns Hopkins University in 1995 and served as director of the Master of Public Health program from 1997 to July 2002.

In addition to her many activities within the university, Dr. Alexander also serves as corporate medical director at McCormick and Company where she provides direct patient care and physician consultative services to all their occupational health programs.

Dr. Alexander is also actively involved in preventive medicine on a national level. She is the president of the American College of Preventive Medicine and serves on the Residency Review Committee for Preventive Medicine of the Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education. She recently completed a 9-year term on the American Board of Preventive Medicine.

Prior to 1995, Dr. Alexander was the medical director at Bethlehem Steel from 1991 until 1995 which provided her a unique perspective in both occupational and preventive medicine.

Dr. Alexander completed her residency training at Johns Hopkins University and is board certified in general preventive medicine. She received her medical and bachelor’s degrees from Cornell University in New York.

Assistant Program Director

Clearance LamClarence Lam, MD, MPH, currently serves as assistant program director for the residency program. He was chief resident for the residency program during the 2011-12 academic year. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Case Western Reserve University where he completed his Bachelor of Arts in political science and biology. He earned his medical degree from the University of Maryland and his Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University.

While in medical school, Dr. Lam was elected as the student body president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, and he served on the health affairs staff of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the U.S. House of Representatives where he conducted oversight investigations on drug safety policy. He also worked as an analyst at the Center for Biosecurity where he authored several publications on biodefense policy and public health preparedness. During residency, he was a representative to his institution’s Graduate Medical Education Committee and Residency Advisory Committee. He was also elected as the Vice President of Membership and Recruitment for the American College of Preventive Medicine’s Resident Physicians Section. In the past, he served two AmeriCorps terms in health education and advocacy in Cleveland, Ohio.

In 2010, Dr. Lam successfully ran for elected office to serve on the Howard County Democratic Central Committee. He also serves as an elected member of the Maryland Democratic State Central Committee and as an Executive Director of the Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Leadership Council of the Maryland Democratic Party.

In addition to his responsibilities as chief resident, he currently serves as a consultant to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on drug shortages, is on the legislative staff of the only physician in the Maryland General Assembly, and serves on the boards of several community organizations, including as Vice Chair of the Howard County Community Action Council and also of Healthy Howard, an award-winning program whose mission is to ensure that access to medical and preventive care is available to all residents in Howard County, Maryland.

Chief Resident

Chief Resident - Elham HatefElham Hatef, MD, MPH currently serves as the Chief Resident of the residency program. She earned her medical degree from the Tehran University of Medical Sciences, in Tehran, Iran and her Master in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Hatef’s interest in medicine and public health has gradually developed over the course of last decade. During her years at medical school, she was involved in Students’ Scientific Research Center where she learned the first basic steps in public health and epidemiologic research. Over the course of her time there, she progressed from being a junior medical student and research scholar to one of the senior members of the central council. She also got involved in several epidemiologic studies on eye diseases at Eye Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences and later on she was one of the founding members of the  “Iranian Society for the Prevention of Blindness”, a non-governmental advocacy group. Upon completing her medical degree in Tehran she served as an emergency doctor in the only hospital with an inpatient facility in a town in the west of the Kurdistan Province of Iran located near the border with Iraq. Over a period of 16 months she managed to visit and supervise the delivery of health care services to approximately 5,000 patients at hospital outpatient and inpatient facilities.

Dr. Hatef moved to the United States in 2006, where she learned to conduct clinical research projects in ophthalmology from specialists and visual scientists at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. She continued to pursue these interests as a research postdoctoral fellow at Wilmer Eye Institute as well as an MPH student with a focus in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.  She also worked in close contact with Cochrane Eye and Vision Group on the systematic reviews in the field of retinal diseases.

Prior to pursuing preventive medicine training, Dr. Hatef completed a preliminary year in internal medicine at the Yale-affiliated Griffin Hospital in Connecticut. During this time she continued working on her ongoing research projects in the filed of retinal imaging and uveitis. As a preventive medicine resident, Dr. Hatef’s academic work focused on global health, health system performance in the context of chronic eye diseases, and prevention of blindness. During residency she conducted a quality improvement project on diabetic eye examination for Medicaid population at East Baltimore Medical Center, one of the Johns Hopkins outpatient clinics in East Baltimore.

Her practicum rotations included work on the Prevention of Blindness Program with the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland; evaluation of diabetic eye exam initiative with Johns Hopkins HealthCare, the managed care organization at Johns Hopkins Medical Institute; evaluation of integrative medicine curriculum among preventive medicine residency programs with the American Collage of Preventive Medicine; establishment of syndromic surveillance system for environmental health with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene; and the assessment of food bank donations and the effect of incentives on donation patterns across the US with the Center for a Livable Future at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. During residency Dr. Hatef was elected as Vice President for Communication with the American College of Preventive Medicine’s Resident Physicians Section. Throughout residency she also worked on ongoing research projects at Wilmer Eye Institute and with the Eye Research Center at Tehran University of Medical Sciences.

In addition to her responsibilities as Chief Resident, Dr. Hatef continues to work with Johns Hopkins HealthCare and East Baltimore Medical Center on diabetic eye exam and with Eye Research Center at Tehran University on national burden of eye diseases.