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Cassandra Thiel

Cassandra Thiel, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Population Health

Assistant Professor, Department of Ophthalmology

sustainable healthcare, life cycle assessment, industrial ecology, systems engineering, healthcare, sustainability

My research utilizes life cycle assessment and principles of industrial ecology to analyze and improve the environmental performance of infrastructure systems, hospital design, healthcare practice, and medical technologies. This new field of study (sustainable healthcare or clinical sustainability) introduces medical providers to data-driven, environmentally preferable solutions, while developing and improving sustainability metrics for measuring human and environmental health. 

As a 2014–2015 Fulbright–Nehru fellow, I analyzed the materials used, the waste generated, and the environmental footprint of cataract surgery at Aravind Eye Care System in southern India. My team found that Aravind’s approach generated just 5% of the carbon emissions as the same surgery done in the United Kingdom. This study demonstrated that reusable surgical materials and careful process design can produce excellent patient outcomes, while reducing costs and the environmental footprint. Our team is testing interventions designed to reduce the footprint and cost of cataract care in the United States, while maintaining excellent outcomes. My lab is also conducting research focused on radiology, inpatient units, and surgical waste.

I hold additional faculty appointments with NYU Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, where I teach courses on operations management and environmental sustainability, and with NYU Tandon School of Engineering, in the Department of Civil and Urban Engineering.



Academic office

227 East 30th Street

Sixth Floor, Room 636

New York, NY 10016

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These focus areas and their associated publications are derived from medical subject headings from PubMed.
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PhD from University of Pittsburgh

Sherman, Jodi D; MacNeill, Andrea; Thiel, Cassandra

JAMA. 2019 Sep 17; 322(11):1043-1044

Tauber, Jenna; Chinwuba, Ijeoma; Kleyn, David; Rothschild, Michael; Kahn, Jonathan; Thiel, Cassandra L

JAMA ophthalmology. 2019 Oct 01; 137(10):1156-1163

Cimprich, Alexander; Santillán-Saldivar, Jair; Thiel, Cassandra L.; Sonnemann, Guido; Young, Steven B.

Journal of industrial ecology. 2019 Jan 01; ?-?

Thiel, Cassandra L; Woods, Noe C; Bilec, Melissa M

American journal of public health. AJPH. 2018 Apr; 108(S2):S158-S164

Thiel, Cassandra L; Schehlein, Emily; Ravilla, Thulasiraj; Ravindran, R D; Robin, Alan L; Saeedi, Osamah J; Schuman, Joel S; Venkatesh, Rengaraj

Journal of cateract & refractive surgery. 2017 Nov; 43(11):1391-1398

Kwon, Cordelia; Essayei, Lernik; Spencer, Michael; Etheridge, Tom; Venkatesh, Rengaraj; Vengadesan, Natrajan; Thiel, Cassandra L

Journal of medical Internet research. 2024 Feb 06; 26:e42140

Thiel, Cassandra; Pak, Emma; Burkard, Rainer; Huber, Harald

Gut. 2023 Nov 24; 72(12):2206-2209

Lichter, Katie E; Charbonneau, Kiley; Sabbagh, Ali; Witztum, Alon; Chuter, Rob; Anand, Chirjiv; Thiel, Cassandra L; Mohamad, Osama

International journal of radiation oncology biology physics. 2023 Nov 01; 117(3):554-567