Pathways to Prevention (P2P) Program

Xinzhi Zhang, M.D., Ph.D.

Xinzhi Zhang

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health
Branch Chief, Center for Translation Research and Implementation Science

About Dr. Zhang

Dr. Xinzhi Zhang is the Chief of Health Inequities and Global Health Branch at the Center for Translation Research and Implementation Science at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Dr. Zhang has broad research interests that include clinical epidemiology, health services research, data science, health informatics, and their applications to promote health equity nationally and globally. He is a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, an elite group of public health leaders who respond to national health crises.

Before joining NHLBI, Dr. Zhang was a program director in the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) Division of Clinical Innovation, where he managed a portfolio of Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA), including overseeing the CTSA National Center for Data to Health (CD2H). During the COVID-19 pandemic, CD2H initiated the National COVID Cohort Collaborative (N3C), the first-ever nationally centralized electronic medical record data openly accessible for the clinical and research community to use for studying COVID-19 and for identifying potential treatments. Dr. Zhang was the NCATS lead on rural health and health equity and currently co-chairs the NIH Rural Health Interest Group. He was also the lead for the diversity and re-entry research supplements program.

Dr. Zhang joined NIH in 2012 as a program director in the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities’ Division of Extramural Scientific Programs where he provided leadership for scientific program development and project management on minority health and health disparities research. He spearheaded the development of research initiatives including Multilevel Chronic Disease Prevention, Simulation Modeling and System Science, Enhancing Diversity in Biomedical Data Science, and Social Determinants of Health Collection using the PhenX Toolkit.

Prior to that, Dr. Zhang had joined the National Center for Infectious Diseases’ Office of Surveillance at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2003 as a Steven M. Teutsch Prevention Effectiveness Fellow. His pandemic preparedness tool, FluSurge, is widely recommended (e.g., by World Health Organization/Pan American Health Organization, Johns Hopkins University) and used (e.g., by STAT, countries like Spain) to estimate surges in demand for hospital-based services during the COVID-19 pandemic. From 2005 to 2012, he was an epidemiologist in CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion’s Division of Diabetes Translation and was instrumental in establishing the vision and eye health program at CDC.

Dr. Zhang has authored 4 papers for inclusion in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 3 book chapters, and 68 articles published in peer-reviewed journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association, the American Journal of Public Health, and the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. He is one of the editors of the 2021 textbook on The Science of Health Disparities Research. Currently, he also serves as an associate editor of Health Equity.

Throughout his career, Dr. Zhang has received many honors and awards from NIH, CDC, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, American Public Health Association, and Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service, including two Presidential Unit Citations and two Outstanding Service Medals. Dr. Zhang received his M.D. from Peking Union Medical College in 1998 and his Ph.D. in health services administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2003.

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