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Al-Aly on TIME100 Health list of people who have most influenced global health

Recognized for influential research on long COVID

May 2, 2024

Ziyad Al-Aly, MD, a clinical epidemiologist at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, has been named to the inaugural TIME100 Health, a new, annual list of 100 individuals who have most influenced global health.

Al-Aly has drawn international attention for more than two dozen studies he has led examining long-term health effects on people who have had COVID-19, also called long COVID. He is director of the Clinical Epidemiology Center at the Washington University-affiliated Veterans Affairs (VA) St. Louis Health Care System, and head of research and development service.

Al-Aly has developed significant expertise in deriving insight from big data. By leveraging the power of a comprehensive health records database of more than 10 million people, maintained by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the nation’s largest integrated health-care delivery system, Al-Aly has found that people who have been infected with SARS-CoV-2 are at higher risks of developing long-term — and potentially deadly — heart, brain, kidney, gastrointestinal and mental health problems compared with those who have not.

Additionally, Al-Aly’s research has shown that the original strain of COVID-19 is five times more likely than the flu to cause adverse health conditions; experiencing repeat COVID infections increases the risk of organ failure and death; and receiving vaccinations doesn’t shield those with breakthrough infections from developing long COVID.

His findings on long COVID have been published in top medical journals, such as The New England Journal of Medicine, Nature, Science and JAMA, and have been cited more than 10,000 times and featured in major media outlets, including TIME, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, CNN, BBC and dozens more.

Al-Aly was named, by the White House, a co-chair of a committee tasked with developing a national research action plan on long COVID. He also advises the World Health Organization (WHO) and governments in the United Kingdom, Canada and other countries.

The magazine’s complete TIME100 Health List appears in the May 13 print issue of TIME. The list is also online, at