Contact Info
Michael Rich, MD, MPH, FAAP
Director, Founder, Pediatrician


Michael Rich, MD, MPH, is Associate Professor of Pediatrics, at Harvard Medical School, Associate Professor of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and practices Adolescent Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital. Pediatrician, child health researcher, father, and filmmaker, Dr. Rich is the Founder and Director of the Digital Wellness Lab and the first evidence-based medical program addressing physical, mental and social health issues associated with digital technology use, the Clinic for Interactive Media and Internet Disorders (CIMAID). As The Mediatrician®, Dr. Rich offers research-based, actionable, and practical answers to parents’, educators’, and clinicians’ questions about children’s and adolescents’ media use and the positive and negative implications for their health and development.

Dr. Rich spent his first career as a filmmaker before transitioning to medicine. His experience and expertise in medicine and media synergize in his health research and clinical work. Over two decades, Dr. Rich was the Director and Principal Investigator of the Video/Intervention Prevention Assessment (VIA) Project, which explored the illness experience of children “from the inside out” through patient-created video diaries. In 2002, he founded the Center on Media and Child Health as an academic research center focused on media and technology as a powerful environmental health influence. The Center evolved into the Digital Wellness Lab in 2021, with an expanded scope to ensure that research is translated into actionable guidance to help caregivers, educators, and clinicians foster the digital wellness of young people while also advising technology companies on the most impactful ways to build young people’s wellness into the design of their products and services.

In 2017, Dr. Rich co-founded the Clinic on Interactive Media and Internet Disorders (CIMAID), the only hospital-based clinic focused on problematic media use in the United States. The Clinic addresses problematic media use behaviors for young people ages 6-24 and has experienced a 250% growth in visits.

Dr. Rich’s innovative child health research has been featured in national and international press, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Time, NPR, BBC, Education Week, and CBC, among others. Dr. Rich has authored policy statements on media and child health for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and testified on the scientific findings about media effects on child development and health to state legislatures, the National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. Congress. He has received the AAP Holroyd-Sherry Award for contributions to knowledge and policy addressing children’s and adolescents’ use of media; served as the AAP’s Media Visiting Professor at the University of Michigan; received the Peace Islands Institute Media Award for excellence in the field and the Family Online Safety Institute Award for outstanding achievement; and was the 2017 Litt Visiting Professor of the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine.

Cognizant of the potency of the image and of the primacy of electronic and print media as a source of information and influence, Dr. Rich studies media as a force that powerfully affects child health and behavior and uses media technologies as tools for medical research, education, health care policy, and patient empowerment.