A Specialist Ophthalmologist, Dr Maria Hagan, who has been actively involved and has been in the forefront of elimination of trachoma in Ghana, has been awarded the 2007 Trachoma Gold Award.
She was presented with her award in Paris, France, on May 6 and she presented a paper titled "Ghana Trachoma Control Programme: TT Surgery Challenge" to mark the day, according to a statement issued in Accra.
The statement said she was nominated by the International Organization against Trachoma (IOAT).
Dr Hagan has been involved in researches and surveys on trachoma in Ghana.
The statement said she was a Principal Researcher in an Ethnographic Study on Trachoma in Ghana in the Upper West region.
She presented a paper on this study at the 7th International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) General Assembly in Dubai in 2004.
Dr Hagan is a recipient of many awards, with the most notable amongst them being Ghana Society for the Blind Award for contribution towards Prevention of Blindness Activities in Ghana, the Ministry of Health Award for Dedicated Service in the Area of Eye Care and Prevention of Blindness (1977) and Distinguished Services for Prevention of Blindness Certificate Awarded in Beijing, China, (1999) by IAPB.
She is a fellow of several associations that include Ghana Medical Association, Member of College of Ophthalmologists, UK, and Co-Chair, International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) in West Africa.
She has served on several occasions as WHO Temporary Adviser.
Dr Hagan worked at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra from 1982 to 1995 and as Head of Eye Care Unit of Ghana Health Service from 1995 to 2006.
She is currently the Secretary of Ghana Eye Foundation Board of Trustees.
Dr Hagan was born in Sekondi in the 1940's where she had her primary education and her secondary education at the Holy Child School, Cape Coast from 1954 - 1960.
She was at the University of Ghana Medical School from 1962-1969. In 1974-1975 she was at the Institute of Ophthalmology. In 1987 she obtained a Diploma in Community Eye Health from the International Centre for Eye Health, London.
Dr Hagan is married to Professor George Panyin Hagan, Chairman of the National Commission on Culture and has three children.