In Memoriam - Dr. Abdur Rab

It is with great sadness that we share the news that Dr. Abdur Rab, former professor and founding director of the Schulich Interfaculty Program in Public Health, has passed away.

“Today we say goodbye to a wonderful friend and great colleague,” said Dr. Amardeep Thind, Director of the Master of Public Health (MPH) Program. “Dr. Rab came to Western University in early 2012 to help develop the novel interfaculty MPH Program. As the founding director, he was inspirational in setting up the building blocks for the program and his legacy of changing the world will live on.”

Dr. Rab completed his MD at the University of Punjab, Pakistan in 1973. He went on to the field of public health by obtaining a diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom in 1977. Dr. Rab completed his Master of Public Health and Tropical Medicine from Tulane University in 1984, and his PhD in Clinical Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom in 1994.

Dr. Rab led the development of the first Master in Public Health program for the Government of Pakistan at the Health Services Academy. The program was offered by Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad. He was a Guest Professor at Heidelberg University, Germany in 1998, training international postgraduate students in applied epidemiology and field research.

He also worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) as a Regional Advisor, Research Policy and Cooperation, from 2001-2006; a WHO Country Representative in Sudan from 2006-2010; and as the Regional Advisor, Research Policy and Cooperation in Cairo. In Sudan, Dr. Rab served as a policy advisor to the Minister of Health and assisted the Ministry of Health with the development of the first Master of Public Health program.

Throughout his career, Dr. Rab has been responsible for the investigation of infectious diseases and epidemics, which led to the eradication of Guinea Worm Disease in Pakistan. He has also served as a Technical Advisor to an international non-governmental organization working in war-torn Afghanistan.

Our condolences go out to Dr. Rab’s family and friends.