NIH Record - National Institutes of Health

Chiang Named Next NEI Director

Dr. Chiang
Dr. Michael F. Chiang

Dr. Michael F. Chiang, a practicing ophthalmologist and current Knowles professor of ophthalmology & medical informatics and clinical epidemiology at Oregon Health & Science University, has been named new director of the National Eye Institute. He is expected to assume his new role late this year.

Chiang, who is also associate director of the OHSU Casey Eye Institute, “brings extensive experience as a clinician, researcher and educator to NEI,” said NIH director Dr. Francis Collins, who made the appointment. “His work in biomedical informatics and telehealth research are particularly important for the future of vision research.” 

Chiang will oversee NEI’s annual budget of nearly $824 million, most of which supports vision research through some 1,600 research grants and training awards made to scientists at more than 250 medical centers, universities and other institutions across the country and around the world. 

Chiang’s own research involves telemedicine and artificial intelligence for diagnosis of retinopathy of prematurity and other ophthalmic diseases, implementation and evaluation of electronic health record systems, modeling of clinical workflow and data analytics. He has been a principal investigator on multiple NIH grants since 2003, and he and his research group have published more than 200 peer-reviewed journal papers. Chiang’s clinical practice focuses on pediatric ophthalmology and adult strabismus.

Chiang has mentored more than 50 postdoctoral fellows, medical students and graduate students. He co-directs an OHSU-wide, NIH-funded vision science training program for predoctoral and postdoctoral students, and co-directs an NIH-funded, mentored clinician-scientist program in ophthalmology.

Chiang is past chair of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) medical information technology committee and has served as an at-large member of the AAO board of trustees. He serves as associate editor for the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association and has served as an associate editor for the Journal of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology & Strabismus

Chiang earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and biology from Stanford University; his master’s degree in biomedical informatics from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons; and his M.D. and master’s in medical science from Harvard Medical School and Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.

He completed residency and pediatric ophthalmology fellowship training at the Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute. He is board-certified in ophthalmology and clinical informatics and is a fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics. Prior to joining OHSU in 2010, he spent over 9 years at Columbia University, where he was Anne S. Cohen associate professor of ophthalmology and biomedical informatics, director of medical student education in ophthalmology and director of the introductory graduate student course in biomedical informatics.

Until Chiang arrives, Dr. Santa Tumminia will continue to serve as acting NEI director, as she has since October 2019.

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