Joan W. Miller, MD Inducted into the National Academy of Medicine

October 20, 2016
Joan W. Miller

Joan W. Miller, MD, the Henry Willard Williams Professor of Ophthalmology and Chair of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School, and Chief of Ophthalmology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Massachusetts General Hospital, was inducted into the prestigious National Academy of Medicine (NAM) on October 15, 2016 in Washington, D.C. Dr. Miller is an internationally recognized expert on retinal disorders, including age-related macular degeneration (AMD), retinal degenerations, and diabetic retinopathy.  

Dr. Miller with family following the National Academy of Medicine induction ceremony
Dr. Miller with family following the National Academy of Medicine induction ceremony in Washington, DC.

The NAM is a national resource for independent, scientifically informed analysis and recommendations on issues of health. NAM serves alongside the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering to “address critical issues in health, medicine and related policy and to inspire positive action across sectors.” 
Over the last two decades, Dr. Miller and her colleagues at Harvard Medical School/Mass. Eye and Ear pioneered the development of photodynamic therapy using verteporfin (Visudyne®), the first pharmacologic therapy for AMD able to reduce and slow vision loss. The group also identified the importance of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in ocular neovascularization, forming the scientific basis of current antiangiogenic therapies for neovascular AMD. Today, these treatments are saving the sight of millions of people worldwide

“Election to the National Academy of Medicine is one of the highest honors in medicine,” said John Fernandez, President and CEO of Mass. Eye and Ear. “This underscores the tremendous contributions that Dr. Miller has made to ophthalmic medicine and science during her exceptional career.”  

With a current membership of over 2,000, the NAM elects no more than 70 national and 10 international members each year. New members are elected by current active members through a selective process that recognizes eminent professionals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health and who are committed to volunteer service in activities of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.