Sonja Rasmussen, M.D.

Sonja A Rasmussen, M.D., M.S.

(352) 733-0111


Sonja Rasmussen, MD, MS, is Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics and Epidemiology at the University of Florida (UF) College of Medicine and College of Public Health and Health Professions. In this role, she serves as a clinical geneticist, seeing a broad range of genetics patients, and as director of UF’s Precision Health Program, which focuses on integration of genomics into clinical care. Dr. Rasmussen recently joined UF after 20 years at the CDC in Atlanta. From 1998-20011, Dr. Rasmussen served in the National Center on Birth Defects and Development Disabilities, where she worked on a large case-control study to identify genetic and environmental risk factors for birth defects, and on studies to better understand the morbidity and mortality associated with several genetic conditions. From 2011-2014, she served as Deputy Director of the Influenza Coordination Unit, responsible for CDC’s pandemic influenza preparedness, and for 6 months, served as the Acting Director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, responsible for CDC's public health preparedness and response activities. From 2015-2018, she served as Editor-in-Chief of CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) Series and as the Director of the Division of Public Health Information Dissemination. Dr. Rasmussen was lead author of the paper confirming Zika virus as a cause of birth defects, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2016. She served in leadership roles during several CDC responses to public health emergencies, including 2009 H1N1 influenza, H7N9 influenza, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), and Zika virus.

Dr. Rasmussen is an author on >260 peer-reviewed papers and is the lead editor of The CDC Field Epidemiology Manual, released by Oxford University Press in 2018. She is board-certified in Genetic Counseling, Pediatrics, and Clinical Genetics.


M.D. with Honors
University of Florida

M.S. in Medical Genetics
University of Wisconsin - Madison

B.S. with Honors in Biology and Mathematics
University of Minnesota Duluth

Board Certification

  • Clinical Genetics and Genomics - American Board of Medical Genetics and Genomics
  • Pediatrics - American Board of Pediatrics

Honors and Awards

Induction into the Delta Omega National Honorary Society in Public Health
University of Georgia (Beta Chi chapter)

NCEZID Director’s Recognition Award for rigorous analysis of primary data and systematic reviews on botulism
The National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID)

Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society Visiting Professorship
Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University

Induction into Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars
Johns Hopkins University

CSELS Honor Award
The Center for Surveillance - Epidemiology - and Laboratory Services (CSELS)