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  • Artemis Award

    2023 Artemis Awardee: Grayson Armstrong, MD, MPH

    Awards Committee

    Grayson W. Armstrong, MD, MPH, is the recipient of the 2023 American Academy of Ophthalmology Artemis Award. He was nominated by the Harvard Medical School Department of Ophthalmology for improving health care access for underserved communities and lessening health care disparities through implementing telemedicine initiatives and working towards large‐scale policy changes.

    Since 2014, the Academy’s Senior Ophthalmologist Committee has honored a young ophthalmologist with the Artemis Award in recognition of the tremendous work he or she has done to help disadvantaged communities to obtain vision care. The award is named after the Greek goddess Artemis who was the protector and nurturer of the vulnerable and suffering. Past recipients have helped deliver health care to impoverished communities and designed or launched community-based health care or educational programs for patients.

    Dr. Armstrong has always been passionate about public health and telemedicine. Following his graduation from residency and a year as chief resident and director of the Eye Trauma Service at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, he designed and completed a one‐year fellowship in ophthalmology telemedicine at Massachusetts Eye and Ear. In his fellowship, he worked with preceptors to design and implement novel models of telemedical care.

    Working with leadership at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, he built a telemedical diabetic retinopathy screening program using fundus cameras to screen patients with diabetes who have not had a recent eye exam. Now supported through industry grants and the Mass General Brigham United Against Racism initiative, this program has proven its effectiveness by remotely detecting eye disease and providing treatment to patients who are unable to receive in‐person care. This program is expanding to additional sites across the greater Boston area and will continue to serve patients in underserved communities who do not have regular access to eye care and are at risk of losing vision from diabetic retinopathy.

    During the first wave of the COVID‐19 pandemic, with many patients unable to have in‐person care, Dr. Armstrong used his telemedicine background to implement a telemedicine program at Massachusetts Eye and Ear, providing much-needed access for patients with vision‐threatening conditions. More recently, in his role as medical director of ophthalmic emergency services, he created a virtual emergency room follow‐up clinic at Massachusetts Eye and Ear to improve patient access to specialized eye care.

    Dr. Armstrong also works to improve ophthalmology through education and policy initiatives. At the onset of the COVID‐19 pandemic, he organized a New England‐wide virtual ophthalmology resident educational curriculum — including surgical conferences, biweekly journal clubs, inter‐institutional virtual grand rounds, and daily didactic lectures. Dr. Armstrong has worked to enact policy changes, to improve patient care access and support trainees.

    During his residency, Dr. Armstrong was elected to serve on the Board of Trustees of the American Medical Association. The only trainee representative at the onset of the COVID‐19 pandemic, he advocated for health policy changes to bring additional health care workers where they were needed, for elimination of the Step 2-CS examination and acceleration of the onboarding process for recent graduates.

    Dr. Armstrong earned his medical degree from the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He concurrently earned a master’s degree in public health with a focus on health care policy and management from the Harvard School of Public Health. In his spare time, he enjoys music and recently taught himself how to play the guitar.