Description: Macintosh HD:Users:sseebod1:Desktop:image001.jpgYan Xiao, PhD

Scientist and Consultant, Health Human Factors and Patient Safety

Contact: Yan.Xiao.PhD at


My passion is in developing high impact innovations to improve safety and reliability of healthcare through human factors methods and principles. I have 7 years of operations experience as director of human factors and patient safety science in a non-profit healthcare system in Texas, and 16 years of academic experience as tenured full professor of anesthesiology at University of Maryland School of Medicine.


My academic preparation includes PhD from University of Toronto's Human Factors Doctoral Programs (1994). With collaborators, I published 70+ peer reviewed journal articles on human factors, patient safety, and healthcare informatics, based on studies mostly from federally sponsored projects. I mentored 15 doctoral students and post-doctoral fellows and have served as a human factor expert on review panels for the US federal agencies (such as AHRQ) and patient safety organizations (such as Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation). I am on the editorial boards of the two leading journals in human factors (Human Factors and Journal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making).


I love working together with frontline leaders and staff to improve safety and reliability of healthcare. With clinical and administrative collaborators I developed methods for forming high performing surgical teams, processes to improve usability during implementation of electronic health record systems, structures to improve infusion medication and alarms safety, models for unit-based learning, nurse-physician communication training concepts, and concepts for accelerating clinical expertise.


My wife and I grew up in Western China and are married for 31 years. We live in Dallas area and have two grown children (both born in Toronto). I enjoy woodworking and travel, and flying as a private pilot.  


Curriculum Vitae | NIH Biosketch