Biography of Egill Hansen
Egill Hansen grew up together with two younger brothers in Rakkestad in south-eastern Norway, the son of Karl Fredrik Hansen, a butcher, and Agnes Helene Tjernnes. He graduated from the gymnasium Østfold Høgere Almenskole, Mysen, in 1948 as a private pupil. He studied medicine at the University of Oslo, graduating in 1954.
After serving his internship at various hospitals, he became an eye specialist in 1964 and in 1966 he became assistant chief physician in the policlinic, department of ophthalmology at Rikshospitalet in Oslo. From 1966 he was in charge of the archives of the blind, and from 1967 to 1981 a consultant and attending physician to Huseby utdanningssenter for synshemmede, an educational institution for people with impaired vision. In 1979 he obtained his medical doctorate with a thesis on " Selective chromatic adaptation studies . ." In this work Hansen describes a new method for investigating receptor functions in eye diseases.
In 1980 he won the Prize for hygiene from the Norwegian Medical Association for a work on the causes of blindness in Norway, based on the archives of the blind. Due to lack pf public funding this extremely valuable archive was closed in 1995. At the time, however, statistics had been produced and distributed in both Norwegian and English.
From 1968 to 1975 Hansen participated in a committee organised by the International Agency for Prevention of Blindness to study visual defects in children. In 1971 he was a founding member of the International Research Group on Colour Vision Deficiencies, and in 1974 of the Perimetric Society 1974. From 1975 a member of a working party in the IRGCVD for the standardisation of colour tests, procedures, and terms. He was the Chairman for colour perimetry group in Perimetric Society 1976-82. Besides this he has participated in a number of committees concerning blindness, rehabilitation and visual demands in various professions.
He was a member of the committee for arranging an international congress on Stengel's disease (Stengel-Batten-Mayou-Spielmeyer-Vogt-Stock disease) in the mining community of Røros.
Hansen has headed a course on visual perception and eye diseases in inborn errors of metabolism.
With Niels Backen and Pål Bjerke he has established an electro-physiological unit at the National Hospital (Rikshospitalet). At this hospital he also founded a medical-historical museum for ophtalmological equipment used at the Rikshospitalet, and was a member of a planning committee for a medical museum. However, Norway still has no such museum.
In 1960 Egill Hansen married Lizzie Irene Knarberg (born in Copenhagen 1929). They have two children.
Hansen has authored or co-authored some 80 articles on ophthalmological topics. The majority of them concern receptor functions in the eye, colour vision, perimetry and diseases related to blindness.