P&S Faculty Elected to National Academy of Medicine

October 17, 2016

Two P&S faculty members have been elected to this year’s class of the National Academy of Medicine, formerly the Institute of Medicine.

Carol Friedman, PhD, professor of biomedical informatics, and Anissa Abi-Dargham, MD, professor emerita of psychiatry, are among 79 professionals selected this year.

NAM membership is one of the highest honors awarded in the fields of health and medicine in the United States. New members are elected by current active members in recognition of major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health.

Dr. Friedman is a renowned expert in natural language processing for biomedical applications. A pioneer in her field, she has demonstrated a variety of clinical applications for natural language processing and shown that it can improve patient care. She helped design the clinical patient database at NewYork-Presbyterian and collaborated on other technologies in use at the hospital. In addition to conducting research, Dr. Friedman directs the graduate program in the Department of Biomedical Informatics.

Dr. Friedman is a fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics and the New York Academy of Medicine, and in 2010 she received the Donald A.B. Lindberg Award for Innovation in Biomedical Informatics from the American Medical Informatics Association.

Dr. Abi-Dargham, former director of the Division of Translational Imaging at the New York State Psychiatric Institute, is now professor of psychiatry at Stony Book University, where she also is vice chair of research in psychiatry. Dr. Abi-Dargham uses imaging studies to uncover the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, schizophrenia-related disorders, and addiction to reveal chemical changes that occur that may potentially serve as risk markers for the disease and improve interventions.

Dr. Abi-Dargham is the past president of the Brain Imaging Council for the Society of Nuclear Medicine, an associate editor for Neuropsychopharmacology, a member of the Board of Scientific Counselors to the National Institute of Mental Health director, and a member of the NARSAD Scientific Council.

NAM is part of the National Academies, which also includes the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Research Council. NAM functions as both an honorific membership group and an advisory organization. Members are expected to volunteer on study committees that serve as national resources for independent, scientifically informed analysis and recommendations on issues related to human health. More information is available at the NAM website.

With the election of Drs. Friedman and Abi-Dargham, Columbia University Medical Center now has 64 members in the NAM.