Harold Pincus, MD

Vice Chair and Professor, Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University Irving Medical Center
Co-Director, Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia University
Director, Quality and Outcomes Research at New York-Presbyterian Hospital
National Director, Health and Aging Policy Fellowship
Senior Scientist, RAND Corporation


Harold Alan Pincus, MD is Vice Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Co-Director of the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia University and Director of Quality and Outcomes Research at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Dr. Pincus is recognized globally for his work on classification of disorders and evidence-based strategies for quality improvement in healthcare delivery. Dr. Pincus also serves as a Senior Scientist at the RAND Corporation and is the National Director of the Atlantic Philanthropies’ Health and Aging Policy Fellowship.

Dr. Pincus has edited or co-authored 23 books and over 400 scientific publications. His primary research interests lie in the practice of evidence-based medicine, quality improvement and the development and empirical evaluation of models to test the relationships among general medicine, mental health, and substance abuse. He has led major health policy and services research and research training projects totaling over $200 million in external funding. He is the Principal Investigator of the congressionally mandated National Evaluation of Mental Health Services for Veterans, along with multiple other projects related to health care quality and patient safety, health system evaluation and comparative effectiveness research.

Internationally, Dr. Pincus has been involved in the International Initiative of Mental Health Leadership (IIMHL), leading an initiative of 12 countries to develop a framework for measuring the quality of mental health care and, ultimately, implement a benchmarking process, and collect data on the quality indicators emanating from the framework among participating countries. He has served as co-chair of the WHO Quality and Safety Topic Advisory Group as a part of the development of the ICD-11. The Advisory Group has worked across all clinical chapters and advices on optimizing the entire classification’s content, structure and coding rules to enable better measurement of quality and patient safety.

Dr. Pincus graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and received his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. Following completion of psychiatry residency at George Washington University Medical Center, he was named a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar. As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. Pincus served as a professional staff member of the President’s Commission on Mental Health at the White House and, subsequently, as a congressional fellow in the U.S. House of Representatives.