Biography of the Surgeon General
VADM Jerome M. Adams, M.D., M.P.H.
Dr. Jerome Adams is the 20th Surgeon General of the United States. His mission as the “Nation’s Doctor,” is to advance the health of the American people. Dr. Adams’ motto as Surgeon General is “better health through better partnerships.” He is committed to strengthening relationships with all members of the health community, and forging new partnerships with members from the business, faith, education and public safety and national security communities.
As the Surgeon General, Dr. Adams holds the rank of Vice Admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. In this capacity, he oversees the operations of approximately 6,500 uniformed health officers who serve in nearly 800 locations around the world, promoting, protecting, and advancing the health and safety of our nation.
During his tenure as Surgeon General, Dr. Adams has created several initiatives to tackle our nation’s most pressing health issues, including: the opioid epidemic, oral health, and the links between community health and both economic prosperity and national security. In response to the opioid epidemic, Dr. Adams issued the first Surgeon General’s Advisory in thirteen years, urging more Americas to carry naloxone, an FDA-approved medication that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Dr. Adams also released Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Spotlight on Opioids, and a digital postcard calling for a cultural shift in the way Americans think about, talk about, and respond to the opioid crisis. His Surgeon General’s postcard recommends actions that can prevent and treat opioid misuse, and promote recovery. Additionally, Dr. Adams is focused on building a culture of health and prevention in all sectors. As part of those efforts, Dr. Adams will compile the available evidence and best practices documenting the connection between private sector investments and public policies which promote healthy communities, and subsequent measures of business and community prosperity. He will issue a report to share the evidence, inspire future research and provide tools and resources for effective, efficient community health investments that produce results.
Dr. Adams received bachelor’s degrees in both biochemistry and psychology from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, a master of public health degree from the University of California at Berkeley, and a medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine.
He has been a leader in numerous professional organizations, including the American Medical Association, the Indiana State Medical Association and the Indiana Society of Anesthesiologists. Dr. Adams is also the former Health Commissioner of Indiana, where he led the State’s responses to Ebola, Zika, and to the largest ever HIV outbreak in the United States related to injection drug use.
Dr. Adams has pledged to lead with science, and facilitate locally led solutions to the nation’s most difficult health problems. He also feels his toughest, but most important job, is being a father to two teenage boys, Caden and Eli, daughter, Millie, and dog Bella.