Rona J. Hu, MD, is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine. She received her MD from UCSF where she also completed her residency training in psychiatry. From 1994-1998 she completed two research fellowships at the National Institutes of Health, first in the prestigious Pharmacology Research Associate Training program (where she was the only MD among 7 PhD's) and then at NIH in Schizophrenia Research.
From 1998-2018 she was Medical Director of the Acute Psychiatric Inpatient Unit, the only locked unit at Stanford Medical Center. From 2020-2022 served as Associate Dean of Academic Affairs at Stanford University School of Medicine.
She has received national awards for her clinical care, research, and teaching, and more recently international recognition for work in cultural psychiatry and advocacy.
Dr. Hu founded the Stanford Mental Health for Asians Research and Treatment (SMHART) clinic, in addition to ongoing work with psychotic patients in the INSPIRE clinic. She also founded Stanford CHIPAO (Communication Health Interactives for Parents of Adolescents and Others), an internationally recognized group using interactive theater to enhance family communication. For these and other efforts, she received the Faculty Award in 2017 from Stanford University's Asian American Community, and the national Kun-Po Soo Award in 2021 from the American Psychiatric Association. She has also been appointed Program Director in Psychiatry for Stanford's Center for Asian Health Research and Excellence (CARE), and Stanford University’s Asian Community Advisory Group.
In her spare time, Dr. Hu participates in community activities to increase access to mental health care. Efforts to decrease stigma have included the SAMHSA-sponsored Spanish-language telenovela "Mariposa", anti-bullying project Musikiwest with Grammy-nominated classical musicians, and the Manic Monologues, nominated for Best Digital Theatre in 2021 and performed in locations across the United States and also in Kenya. Most recently she was recognized by NAMI San Mateo, NBC News, and the French newspaper Le Monde for directly helping the victims of the shooting in Half Moon Bay.