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Douglas Corley elected to prestigious Association of American Physicians

Kaiser Permanente research scientist and gastroenterologist joins honorary medical society

The Association of American Physicians announced it has inducted Douglas Corley, MD, PhD, MPH, a senior research scientist at the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research and a gastroenterologist with The Permanente Medical Group, into its honorary medical society.

The induction ceremony was held April 9 during the virtual Joint Meeting of the Association of American Physicians, American Society of Clinical Investigation, and the American Physician Scientists Association, widely recognized as the premiere meeting for physician scientists. Corley is believed to be the first person from the Division of Research to be elected to the Association of American Physicians.

Douglas Corley, MD, PhD, MPH, research scientist, Division of Research.

“It is a tremendous privilege to have this recognition on behalf of our group’s work in cancer epidemiology and applied research on cancer prevention and screening,” said Corley. “Research is truly teamwork. I am so grateful for all those within our group and for the research support we receive from The Permanente Medical Group that makes it possible to evaluate and improve care.”

Corley joined Kaiser Permanente Northern California in 2002, when he was recruited to join our San Francisco medical center as a gastroenterologist and our Division of Research as a research scientist. He has continued to practice clinically in San Francisco while expanding his research and regional leadership activities. He is the director of the Delivery Science and Applied Research program at the Division of Research, which facilitates innovative clinician-led research between clinician-investigators and research scientists.

“Doug’s election to the Association of American Physicians is a tremendous honor for him and for our department and organization,” said Tracy Lieu, MD, MPH, director of the Division of Research. “His research is a model for blending creativity with real-world impact, and exemplifies the unique perspective physician-scientists contribute both regionally and nationally.”

Corley was recognized by the Association of American Physicians for his significant research advances in the cancer field. He has led multi-center, team-based collaborations and received more than 30 funding awards from the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute (NCI), and other federal funders. This research has identified links between colon cancer screening quality and patient outcomes that have informed international guidelines and helped launch broad-based research into quality improvement. Corley also published the first comprehensive, risk factor analyses for Barrett’s esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma, and the first well-designed studies of the effectiveness of surveillance in reducing deaths from this rapidly increasing cancer. In addition, his research has informed drug safety labeling and practice around commonly used acid suppression medications.

Corley is widely respected throughout the country. He chaired the national steering committee of the 10-center NCI Population-based Research Optimizing Screening Through Personalized Regimens (PROSPR) consortium and worked with the American Cancer Society and the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force’s modeling team to develop its national colon cancer screening campaign. He is currently co-editor-in-chief of the journal Gastroenterology and the chief scientific officer for an NCI trial that is evaluating follow-up strategies after detection of pre-cancerous colorectal neoplasms.

Established in 1885, the Association of American Physicians is an elected society of America’s leading physician-scientists that seeks to inspire physician-led research across all fields of science related to medicine and health. Each year, about 60-70 individuals are recognized by nomination for membership. To be nominated, a physician-scientist must have attained excellence in achieving the goals set by the Council of the Association. Similar to the National Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Medicine, membership in the Association is considered a particular honor.

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About the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research

The Kaiser Permanente Division of Research conducts, publishes and disseminates epidemiologic and health services research to improve the health and medical care of Kaiser Permanente members and society at large. It seeks to understand the determinants of illness and well-being, and to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of health care. Currently, DOR’s 600-plus staff is working on more than 450 epidemiological and health services research projects. For more information, visit or follow us @KPDOR. 

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