Loma Linda University

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Jeff Rutgard, MD MS
MD, 5/1981, Univ of Illinois at Urbana Cha
With Honors

Jeffrey Rutgard, MD, MS


Dr. Rutgard attended the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana where he was elected to the Alpha Epsilon Delta International Premedical Honor Society and the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society in recognition of excellence in scholarship.  Dr. Rutgard was academically honored and chosen to be a James Scholar Independent Study Student and graduated, Phi Beta Kappa, in three years with High Honors and Departmental Distinction for his research in Biology, Physiology, Nutrition, and Physical Fitness.  Dr. Rutgard earned his medical degree at the University of Illinois, Chicago, where he was again academically honored and chosen to be a James Scholar Independent Study Student.


Dr. Rutgard received the University of Illinois’ Medical Research Award for his research in immunology, cancer, and ophthalmology. Dr. Rutgard’s research was highly acclaimed and published in prestigious medical journals and a chapter in a book.  Dr. Rutgard attended the University of Illinois Graduate School for three years while he attended medical school and earned a Master’s Degree in Surgery combined with research in immunology. He began his ophthalmology training at UCLA’s Jules Stein Eye Institute where he studied ophthalmology basic science, pathology, and had his first clinical experience. He completed his residency and an associate-ship in ophthalmology at the highly acclaimed University of Iowa.


Since the Fall of 1999 Dr. Rutgard has devoted his entire practice of medicine to serving the poor in the international humanitarian sector via on-going volunteer medical and surgical clinics in collaboration with SEE International, the Hawaiian Eye Foundation, Faith Community Church, North Shore Christian Church, Medical Ministry International, LIGA, Flying Samaritans, Orbis, and other international foundations. Dr. Rutgard has participated in 121 Humanitarian Medical Projects, performed over 70,000 patient examinations He is a clinical instructor for small incision cataract surgery in the United States and internationally and has taught over one thousand ophthalmologists worldwide.  Dr. Rutgard is a guest lecturer in the United States and internationally for Medical Colleges, Medical Societies, Universities, Schools, and Churches.


In 2010 Dr. Rutgard has also received the Eye Surgical Volunteer of the Decade Award from the Hawaiian Eye Foundation and in 2013  the SEE International Award for having performed more humanitarian eye surgeries in more countries than any other American Ophthalmologist.  In addition, Dr. Rutgard has been honored with the Paul Harris Rotary International Award for his significant contribution to the people of this world.