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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.

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About Our Health Officer

Florida Department of Health in Sumter County


picture of director Dr. Zelnick

Sanford D. Zelnick, D.O., M.S.
Director, Florida Department of Health in Sumter County (FDOH-Sumter)

2011 - present

Dr. Sanford Zelnick attended undergraduate school at Tulane University and completed medical school at Des Moines University, Des Moines, Iowa. He completed a Family Practice Residency at the University of Wisconsin and an Occupational Medicine Fellowship at the University of Cincinnati. He is board certified in Family Medicine and Occupational Medicine.

Experience:  Dr. Zelnick completed a 28-year career in the United States Air Force Medical Service and retired with the rank of colonel in 2007.   From 1995-1999, Dr. Zelnick served as consultant to the Air Force Surgeon General for Occupational Medicine in Washington D.C. From 2001-2004 he served as Chief Medical Division,  Department of Defense Manned Space Flight Support Office (DDMS) and was responsible for medical contingency training and response to space shuttle bailout contingencies world-wide.  For his published review on treatment of potential rocket fuel exposure and other contributions to flight safety, he received the Silver Snoopy Award, a distinguished award given by the NASA astronaut corps in 2006.

Dr. Zelnick authored original research concerning visual field properties of industrial respirators.  This work was recognized as the best paper published in the American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal for 1994 by the Michigan Industrial Hygiene Association. He authored additional papers on carbon monoxide exposure in general aviation as well as jet fuel (JP-8) and rocket fuel (hydrazine) exposure.