Jan 29, 2015
Team USA’s Top Doc

Congratulations to T&C Editorial Board Member Dr. Cindy Chang, who is in London serving as U.S. Olympic Team’s Chief Medical Officer (CMO). Chang will supervise an 80-person staff of physicians, chiropractors, athletic trainers, physical therapists, and massage therapists that has 525 athletes under its care.
Chang was the Chief Team Physician for University of California-Berkeley athletics from 1995-2008 before stepping down so she could spend more team with her family. She is currently a family medicine and sports medicine specialist at University Health Services. Chang’s appointment as the U.S. team’s CMO for the Olympic Games makes her the first woman to hold the position and the first Chinese-American to do so. Four years ago, Chang served as chief medical officer for the Paralympic Games in Beijing.

“It’s a huge honor. It’s really exciting,” Chang told Berkeleyside.com. “There are a lot of things I didn’t expect to be doing 20 years ago. My goal was to be a well-trained family physician with a strong training in sports medicine as well.”

Chang’s immediate duties include putting together Team USA’s sports medicine clinic, which contains supplies that were shipped on pallets from Colorado Springs to the Olympic Village. Once the games are underway, Chang is confident her staff will have no trouble dealing with the variety of athletes who are competing.

“There are some of us that have more experience working with one sport more than any other, but all of us are trained to work with athletes,” she told Berkeleyside.com. “The mechanism of injury may be different, but the injury itself is typically the same. We’re often in the position of saying, ‘Tell me again what is the move you did that caused you to be injured?’ You can’t pretend you know; you can’t fool the athletes.”

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