Clinical Director, NCCIH

Job Summary

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), a major research component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), seeks to identify an outstanding clinical director to plan and lead NCCIH’s clinical research activities in the Division of Intramural Research (DIR). NCCIH is dedicated to exploring complementary and integrative healing practices in the context of rigorous science, educating and training NCCIH researchers, and disseminating authoritative information to the public and professionals. The Center studies the integration of complementary treatment, diagnostic, and prevention systems, modalities, and disciplines with the practice of conventional medicine as a complement to such medicine, and the integration of such practices into health care delivery systems within the United States. The NCCIH clinical director reports to the director, NCCIH, and coordinates activities with the scientific director, NCCIH. The incumbent leads a clinical research program directed toward the study of pain. The clinical director fosters and develops clinical research projects that broadly investigates pain involving research participants, patients with acute and chronic pain, and patients experiencing pain associated with a wide range of medical conditions. Research investigations may focus on many aspects of pain, which may include but are not limited to the role of the brain, the peripheral nervous system, and physiological systems in pain processing and control, as well as how factors such as emotion, attention, environment, and genetics affect pain perception. The methods employed to study various aspects of pain can vary and may include the use of sensory physiological testing, structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging, and behavioral and psychological testing. Studies may also include the investigation of a diverse range of pain management strategies including behavioral approaches, noninvasive brain stimulation, natural products, and novel pharmacologic interventions. The position offers a unique and exciting opportunity for an extremely capable individual to plan and oversee NCCIH’s clinical research programs. The clinical director guides and oversees the Center’s clinical research portfolio, which includes but is not limited to clinical trials, case studies, and drug and device and other nonpharmacologic intervention development efforts both internally and through research agreements with leading institutions around the country to advance clinical research. Working with the scientific director, the clinical director evaluates and facilitates DIR clinical research and training of postbaccalaureate, predoctoral, and postdoctoral fellows; collaborates with other NIH programs; and advises the NCCIH director and senior staff on clinical research programs and on areas of scientific interest to the Center. The incumbent plays a key role in creating and maintaining a nurturing clinical research environment that encourages creativity, collaboration among scientists from different disciplines, effective training of postdoctoral fellows and trainees, and efficient utilization of resources. The Office of the Clinical Director has a staff of seven professional and support employees and a current annual budget in excess of $1.8 million. The clinical director manages and is involved with several active clinical protocols through multiple NCCIH clinical research projects. Opportunities exist to work with other Institutes and Centers at NIH to advance the science of NCCIH, to build collaborations with outside academic partners for research and training purposes, and to partner with industry through technology transfer or cooperative research and development agreements. The clinical director will collaborate on and may also lead their own high-quality research program. Resources commensurate with the vision of the proposed program will be provided. Information on NCCIH may be found at National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.

Required Qualifications

Applicants must possess an M.D. or D.O. degree and have demonstrated scientific leadership and/or senior-level research experience in a clinical research program of national and international standing in an area relevant to pain. The successful candidate will have a compelling vision for the future of the field, proven experience in managing and directing a clinical research program, and well-honed administrative and interpersonal skills. NCCIH seeks candidates who have a commitment to scientific excellence and the energy, enthusiasm, and innovative thinking necessary to maintain the Center’s clinical research efforts at the forefront of science. Preference will be given to those with pain research and pain medicine experience, known and respected within their profession, both nationally and internationally, as distinguished individuals of outstanding scientific competence, and those who possess a record of achievement as a senior scientific administrator/executive leader. Applicants also must have demonstrated experience in setting, planning, implementing, and analyzing program objectives and priorities. Candidates should have the demonstrated ability to manage financial and human resources and lead a clinical research program involving extensive internal and external collaboration.


Salary is competitive and will be commensurate with the experience of the candidate. A full package of Federal Civil Service benefits is available, including retirement, health and life insurance, leave, and a Thrift Savings Plan (401K equivalent). A recruitment and/or relocation incentive may be available, and relocation expenses may be paid.

Please read the following guidance on Selective Service requirements. 

Equal Employment Opportunity

Selection for this position will be based solely on merit, with no discrimination for non-merit reasons such as race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, disability, age, or membership or non-membership in an employee organization. NIH encourages the application and nomination of qualified women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities.

Standards of Conduct/Financial Disclosure

The National Institutes of Health inspires public confidence in our science by maintaining high ethical principles.  NIH employees are subject to Federal government-wide regulations and statutes as well as agency-specific regulations described on the NIH Ethics website. We encourage you to review this information.  The position requires the incumbent to complete a public financial disclosure report prior to the effective date of the appointment.

Foreign Education

Applicants who have completed part or all of their education outside of the U.S. must have their foreign education evaluated by an accredited organization to ensure that the foreign education is equivalent to education received in accredited educational institutions in the United States. We will only accept the completed foreign education evaluation. For more information on foreign education verification, visit the website. Verification must be received prior to the effective date of the appointment.


HHS has a critical preparedness and response mission: HHS protects the American people from health threats, researches emerging diseases, and mobilizes public health programs with domestic and international partners.  In support of this mission, HHS offers its employees the opportunity to volunteer to become Federal Civilian Detailees and contribute their unique skills through voluntary temporary assignments to humanitarian emergencies or Departmental priorities countering new and emerging health, safety, and security threats.

Reasonable Accommodation

NIH provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodation during any part of the application and hiring process, please notify us. The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.