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NBC’s Snyderman to share own otolaryngologist story, thoughts on future during Opening General Session


Nancy L. Snyderman, MD

Nancy L. Snyderman, MD, chief medical editor for NBC News, is an otolaryngologist head/neck surgeon.

The award-winning journalist will share her own history in the field of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery and where she sees it going as part of her John Conley, MD Lecture on Medical Ethics during today’s Opening Ceremony at 8:30 am in West Level 1, Ballroom AB.

“I am beyond flattered,” she said. “I do not take this invitation lightly. I am quite humbled and honored by it. I feel very strongly that I have to do it proud.”

Dr. Snyderman has garnered journalism’s most distinguished honors, including several Emmy Awards, an Alfred I. duPont Award, Edward R. Murrow awards, and a Gracie Award.

She joined NBC News as the chief medical editor in September 2006. Her reports regularly appear on “TODAY,” “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams,” “Dateline NBC,” MSNBC, and MSNBC.com. She has covered a wide range of topics affecting society and has traveled extensively, reporting from many of the world’s most troubled areas.

“I’ve had the luxury through my work at NBC News to travel the world,” she said. “I have taken care of combatants on both sides of a crisis, I’ve been in refugee camps, and I’ve treated the poorest of the poor. When you do that, you realize there’s a difference between being a surgeon/physician and a healer. At the end of the day when you can touch someone and you can make that person better, and change someone’s life even by a degree or two, you’ve left an imprint on someone’s soul. That to me is what medicine is all about.”

Dr. Snyderman also serves as the medical director of GE’s Healthymagination initiative, focused on improving global health, and improving quality, access, and cost in the U.S. healthcare system. She is the co-founder of Careplanners Inc., a company that helps people navigate the healthcare system. She is also on the board of directors of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in Cambridge, MA. She is on faculty in the Department of the Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Prior to joining NBC News, Dr. Snyderman served as vice president of consumer education at Johnson & Johnson, where she focused on the importance of digital health. Before that, she was the medical correspondent for ABC News for 17 years and a contributor to “20/20,” “Primetime,” and “Good Morning America.” She was a frequent substitute co-host on “Good Morning America.”

She attended medical school at the University of Nebraska in Omaha and continued with residencies in pediatrics and ear, nose, and throat surgery at the University of Pittsburgh. She joined the surgical staff at the University of Arkansas in 1983 and began her broadcasting career shortly after at KATV, the ABC affiliate in Little Rock, AR.

Dr. Snyderman’s medical work has been widely published in peer review journals, and she is the recipient of numerous research grants. She was awarded a Kellogg fellowship in 1987. She has written five books: “Dr. Nancy Snyderman’s Guide to Good Health for Women Over Forty,” “Necessary Journeys,” “Girl in the Mirror: Mothers and Daughters in the Years of Adolescence,” “Diet Myths That Keep Us Fat,” and “Medical Myths That Can Kill You,” and is a New York Times best-selling author.

Dr. Snyderman said she grew up learning about the importance of the AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting & OTO EXPOSM.

“My dad, now 90, went to Academy meetings for 50 years in a row. He never missed one,” she said. “I grew up knowing how important the Academy is for educational reasons, to see colleagues you haven’t seen in a long time, to learn about new technology, and to see who’s doing things that you’re not quite grasping. I always walk away from the Academy’s meetings having learned something new. To me, it’s one of the richest intellectual meetings and, believe me, I go to all of them. I go to orthopedic meetings, cardiology meetings, infectious disease meetings—I go to all of them. The otolaryngology meeting is something special.”