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Health Care Hero Physician Specialist Alfred Abuhamad

Updated: March 16, 2010 - 9:10 am

Posted: February 5, 2010


Alfred Abuhamad’s interest in obstetrics started in his medical school years. He became intrigued by maternal pregnancy complications and fetal development.

He worked with hospital partners in Hampton Roads to develop a comprehensive maternal and neonatal transport program that facilitates transfer of a woman with pregnancy complications to a tertiary hospital for acute care .

The program, which covers Southeastern Virginia and Northern North Carolina, matured to become one of the largest on the East Coast and continues to provide care to more than 500 mothers with acute pregnancy complications annually.

Most of the doctor’s academic and clinical work focuses on improving women’s and infants’ health.

He worked with colleagues to develop target programs such as HIV in pregnancy and teen pregnancy that address the needs of underserved citizens.

Through collaborative efforts, they were able to reduce the vertical transmission of HIV (from mother to infant) from one of the highest rates in the country to almost undetectable levels in the span of 10 years.

On his third trip with the Outreach Committee of the International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Abuhamad was in Haiti teaching a class to doctors and midwives when the earthquake hit. He refused the option of evacuating and instead turned his work to caring for the injured.

Despite his busy schedule locally, nationally and abroad, his greatest joy involves caring for pregnant mothers and teaching medical students and residents.

He treasures the bonds and friendships he’s established with many of his patients and enjoys the interaction with his young colleagues in training.

His role as a mentor is to ensure that physicians in training acquire the knowledge to make good clinical judgments and practice the profession with humility and a deep sense of human understanding.  

Abuhamad says he owes much of his success to his parents who instilled in him, from his early days, strong academic values, a work ethic and appreciation and respect for knowledge.