Dr. Sanjay Gupta

Battle Scars: Medicine in Times of War and Disaster

Program Date: February 23, 2019

Dr. Sanjay Gupta

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A practicing neurosurgeon, Dr. Sanjay Gupta is also a medical correspondent who has reported from the world’s crisis points: post-hurricane Puerto Rico, the West African Ebola outbreak, earthquakes in Nepal and Haiti, the 2004 tsunami in Southeast Asia, Hurricane Katrina, the war in Iraq, and a post-9/11 New York City.

At The Richmond Forum, Dr. Gupta will share his first-hand experience on the dangers and importance of reporting from locations where the health of thousands is at stake.

Finding the places where the truth exists is more important than ever.–Dr. Sanjay Gupta


Dr. Sanjay Gupta is the multiple Emmy Award-winning chief medical correspondent for CNN. Gupta, a practicing neurosurgeon, plays an integral role in CNN’s reporting on health and medical news for all of CNN’s shows domestically and internationally, and contributes to CNN.com. His medical training and public health policy experience distinguishes his reporting from war zones and natural disasters, as well as on a range of medical and scientific topics, including the opioid crisis, Pandemic outbreaks, brain injury, disaster recovery, health care reform, fitness, military medicine, and medicinal marijuana.

Dr. Gupta is the host of Vital Signs for CNN.

Since 2001, Dr. Gupta has covered the most important health stories in the United States and around the world. In 2017, Dr. Sanjay Gupta reported from the front lines of a breakdown in the medical infrastructure of Puerto Rico, devastated by Hurricane Maria. He also broke the news about Senator John McCain’s diagnosis with Glioblastoma. In 2016, Dr. Gupta told the exclusive story of the separation of craniopagus twins Jaden and Anias McDonald in Separated: Saving the Twins. Gupta extensively covered the Flint, Michigan water crisis and Pulse nightclub shooting. That same year he moderated a panel with President Barack Obama on the Opioid crisis. When the earthquake hit Nepal in 2015, Gupta flew into Kathmandu to cover the aftermath. In 2014, he traveled to Conakry Guinea Africa to investigate the deadly Ebola outbreak that would soon find its way the U.S. for the first time. During the rollout of Healthcare.gov in 2013, millions experienced glitches in the online portal and Dr. Gupta spoke exclusively with Health & Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sibelius about the magnitude of the botched website for which she took responsibility. A mysterious illness in Cambodia that was killing children sent Dr. Sanjay Gupta there in 2012.

In 2011, Gupta reported from earthquake- and tsunami-ravaged Japan, adding clarity and context to the human impact and radiation concerns. In 2010, Gupta reported on the devastating earthquake in Haiti, for which he was awarded two Emmys. His distinctive reporting in 2010 also included live coverage on the unprecedented flooding in Pakistan.

Gupta joined CNN in the summer of 2001. He reported from New York following the attacks on the U.S. on Sept. 11, 2001. In 2003, he embedded with the U.S. Navy’s “Devil Docs” medical unit, reporting from Iraq and Kuwait as the unit traveled to Baghdad. He provided live coverage of the first battlefield operation performed during the war, and performed life-saving brain surgery five times himself in a desert operating room. In 2009, he embedded with the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne, accompanying them on life-saving rescue missions in Afghanistan.

Gupta contributed to the network’s 2010 Peabody Award-winning coverage of the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. In 2005, Gupta contributed to CNN’s Peabody Award-winning coverage of Hurricane Katrina, revealing that official reports that Charity Hospital in New Orleans had been evacuated were incorrect. His “Charity Hospital” coverage for Anderson Cooper 360° resulted in his 2006 News & Documentary Emmy for Outstanding Feature Story. That year, he also covered the 2006 Lebanon War. In 2004, Gupta was sent to Sri Lanka to cover the tsunami disaster that took more than 155,000 lives in Southeast Asia, contributing to the 2005 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Award for CNN. In 2015, Gupta was again awarded the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Award for his enterprise reporting showcased in the primetime documentaries, WEED.

Gupta’s passion for inspiring Americans to lead healthier, more active lives led him to launch “Fit Nation,” CNN’s multi-platform lifestyle initiative on his weekly series, Sanjay Gupta, M.D., which was nominated 4 times for a daytime Emmy award.

In addition to his work for CNN, Gupta is a member of the staff and faculty at the Emory University School of Medicine. He is associate chief of neurosurgery at Grady Memorial Hospital and regularly performs surgery at Emory University and Grady hospitals. He holds memberships in the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Congress of Neurological Surgeons and the Council on Foreign Relations. He serves as a diplomat of the American Board of Neurosurgery and is a Certified Medical Investigator through the American College of Forensic Examiners.

Before joining CNN, Gupta completed a neurosurgical fellowship at the Semmes Murphey Clinic and residency at the University of Michigan Medical Center. In 1997, he was selected as a White House Fellow, serving as a special advisor to First Lady Hillary Clinton.

Gupta contributes to the CBS news magazine 60 Minutes and serves as an Executive Producer for the HBO Documentary Unit. He is the author of three New York Times bestselling books, Chasing Life (2007), Cheating Death (2009), and his first novel: Monday Mornings (2012).

In 2003, Gupta won the Humanitarian Award from the National Press Photographers Association. In 2004, the Atlanta Press Club named him “Journalist of the Year” and in 2009, he won both the first Health Communications Achievement Award from the American Medical Association’s Medical Communications Conference and the Mickey Leland Humanitarian Award from the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC). In 2010, Gupta was honored by John F. Kennedy University with its Laureate Award for leaders in health and wellness. 2011, Forbes magazine named him as one of the “Ten Most Influential Celebrities.” In 2012, Gupta delivered commencement in the “Big House” at his alma mater in Ann Arbor, Michigan. In 2014 Dr. Gupta was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. In 2018, Gupta launched the Gupta Family Initiative in Health Communications at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and a Doctorate of Medicine degree from the University of Michigan Medical School.

2018-2019 Season

Captain Scott Kelly
Scott Kelly
November 17, 2018
Tina Fey
Tina Fey
January 19, 2019
Sanjay Gupta
Sanjay Gupta
February 23, 2019
Ian Bremmer
Ian Bremmer
March 23, 2019
Temple Grandin
Temple Grandin
April 27, 2019

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