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Harvard Health Blog Experts
List of Experts
Neel Shah, MD, MPP, FACOG
Dr. Shah, MD, MPP, FACOG, is an assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive biology at Harvard Medical School, and director of the Delivery Decisions Initiative at Harvard’s Ariadne Labs.
As an obstetrician-gynecologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Dr. Shah cares for patients at critical life moments that range from childbirth to primary care to surgery. As a scientist and social entrepreneur, he is a globally recognized expert in designing, testing, and spreading solutions that improve healthcare.
Dr. Shah is listed among the “40 smartest people in health care” by the Becker’s Hospital Review, and has been profiled by the New York Times, CNN, and other outlets. He is senior author of the book Understanding Value-Based Healthcare (McGraw-Hill), which Don Berwick has called “an instant classic” and Atul Gawande called “a masterful primer for all clinicians.” Prior to joining the Harvard faculty, Dr. Shah founded Costs of Care, a global NGO that curates insights from clinicians to help delivery systems provide better care. In 2017, Dr. Shah co-founded the March for Moms Association, a coalition of 20 leading organizations, to increase public and private investment in the wellbeing of mothers.
Soo Jeong Youn, PhD
James P. Ioli, DPM
James P. Ioli, DPM, is Chief of Podiatry at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. He is an Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School and has been a practicing podiatrist for over 30 years.
Jacqueline Sperling, PhD
Suzanne Bertisch, MD, MPH
Suzanne Bertisch, MD, MPH, is an Associate Physician and Clinical Director of Behavioral Sleep Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. Her research focuses 1) adapting sleep health interventions to a variety of community and clinical populations and 2) impact of sleep disorders consequent influence on pain and cardiometabolic health, for which she has won several awards. Dr. Bertisch has also published on national patterns of use of pharmacologic and behavioral treatments of insomnia. She also coleads innovations aimed to improve the diagnosis and treatment of sleep disorders in the primary care setting. She was named a Top Doctor by Boston Magazine in 2017.
Adam Landman, MD, MS, MIS, MHS
Adam Landman, MD, MS, MIS, MHS is Chief Information Officer at Brigham Health, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and an attending emergency physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is board certified in Emergency Medicine and Clinical Informatics and an expert in health information technology and digital health design, development, and implementation. In his current role, he is responsible for developing strategic IT initiatives, with the goal of evolving the next generation of information systems and digital health solutions across the Brigham Health enterprise, while maintaining a focus on excellence.
David M. Vernick, MD
David M. Vernick, MD is a graduate of Johns Hopkins Medical School. He completed his postgraduate surgical training at George Washington Hospital in Washington, D.C. In 1979 Dr. Vernick continued his training as a resident in Otolaryngology at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. Subsequently, he became a fellow in Otology, Neurotology skull base surgery at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Upon completion, he returned to the Boston area and has worked as a surgeon in Otolaryngology at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Children’s Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Fatima Cody Stanford, MD, MPH, MPA, FAAP, FACP, FTOS
Fatima Cody Stanford, MD, MPH, MPA, FAAP, FACP, FTOS is an obesity medicine physician scientist for children, adolescents, and adults at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She is an Associate at the Disparities Solution Center, Affiliated Faculty at the Mongan Institute of Health Policy, MGH Midlife Women’s Health Center Leadership Team, and executive committee member of the Nutrition Obesity Research Center at Harvard (NORCH). At the MGH Weight Center, she provides behavioral, pharmacologic, and bariatric surgery pre and post-op care. She is one of a handful of clinicians fellowship trained in obesity medicine in the United States.
Dr. Stanford received her BS and MPH from Emory University where she was a MLK Scholar, MD from the Medical College of Georgia School of Medicine where she was a Stoney Scholar, and her MPA from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government where she was a Zuckerman Fellow. She served as a health communications fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and worked as a behavioral sciences intern at the American Cancer Society. Upon completion of her MPH, she received the Gold Congressional Award, the highest honor that Congress bestows upon America’s youth. Dr. Stanford has completed a medicine and media internship at the Discovery Channel and has authored a USMLE Step 1 medical review text. An American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation Leadership Award recipient in 2005, an AMA Paul Ambrose Award for national leadership among resident physicians in 2009, she was selected for the AMA Inspirational Physician Award in 2015.
Dr. Stanford completed her internal medicine and pediatrics residency at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine/Palmetto Health. She completed her three year obesity medicine and nutrition fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She has served as the socio-medical affairs officer for the World Medical Association Junior Doctors Network executive board where she co-wrote the World Medical Association policy on physician well-being that was adopted at their annual meeting in Moscow, Russia in 2015. The American College of Physicians selected her as the 2013 recipient of the Joseph E. Johnson Leadership Award. Additionally, she is the 2015 recipient of the MA ACP Young Leadership Award. Her current research focuses on obesity, health disparities, and health policy. She is widely published in peer reviewed journals such as NEJM and Circulation, in popular press outlets such as the NY Times, and as a featured expert on numerous broadcast television outlets. She served as the keynote speaker on obesity for the AMA House of Delegates prior to their decision to acknowledge obesity as a chronic disease at their 2013 meeting. Dr. Stanford teaches medical students, residents, and fellows at Harvard Medical School. In 2014, she was selected for the Certificate of Excellence in Tutoring for her instruction in the Harvard Medical School Health Policy New Pathway Course.
In 2017, she was selected for the Harvard Medical School Harold Amos Faculty Diversity Award, the MMS Women’s Health award, and for the inaugural Top 40 under 40 at Emory University. Recently, she was named to the 2019 listing for Who’s Who in the World.
Lisa Zakhary, MD, PhD
Lisa Zakhary, MD, PhD, serves as Co-Director of Psychopharmacology in the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) OCD and Related Disorders Program and Director of Psychopharmacology in the MGH Excoriation Clinic and Research Unit. She received her undergraduate degree from Columbia University and her medical degree from Harvard Medical School. Additionally, she earned a PhD in molecular neurobiology during her medical training. Following medical school, she completed the MGH/McLean Adult Psychiatry Residency and the Boston Psychoanalytic Society & Institute Fellowship before going on to join the MGH faculty.
As Assistant in Psychiatry at MGH, she splits her time between MGH Primary Care Psychiatry and the MGH OCD and Related Disorders Program. Additionally, she is an Instructor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and is part of a group private practice in Arlington, Massachusetts. Dr. Zakhary has a special interest in psychodermatology and as a resident, she co-founded the MGH Comprehensive Skin Management Clinic, a psychiatry/dermatology clinic providing collaborative treatment for patients with compulsive skin picking, trichotillomania, body dysmorphic disorder, and delusions of parasitosis. As staff, she continues to explore ways to optimize psychodermatologic treatment through collaboration, education, and research.
Melissa Brodrick, MEd
Since 1985, Melissa has served as a mediator, facilitator and trainer in the field of dispute resolution. She has worked in private practice, helping clients to engage in effective communications and problem solving while navigating high impact work and family issues. She has also worked with numerous academic institutions, health care organizations, Fortune 500 companies; state and federal agencies; and non-profit groups. Melissa has served as Executive Director of the Massachusetts Association of Mediation Programs and Practitioners, Director of The Children’s Hearings Project and mediator of educational appeals for the Massachusetts Department of Education. She is the recipient of numerous awards in her field and holds an MEd from Harvard University and a BA from Amherst College.
Elena Toschi, MD
Elena Toschi, MD, is an Italian physician who has worked in Italy with Ele Ferrannini on insulin action and glucose metabolism in the late 1990’s. She then moved to Boston, USA to join Susan Bonner-Weir’s lab as a post-doctoral fellow working on the biology of islets of Langerhans and their regeneration. After obtaining her American medical license and specialization in Endocrinology at the joined Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/ Joslin program she has joined the Joslin adult clinic to work with Dr Howard Wolpert. Her clinical work has focused on use of technology in T1D to improve outcome. She has been involved in several multicenter trial on use of technology for the management of diabetes: REPLACE-BG and DIAMOND study among others. These studies have evaluated the benefit of CGM use by patients on multiple daily injections of insulin, have changed healthcare policy, with CGM now recommended to all patients with Type 1 Diabetes and CGM are now covered by Medicare. She is currently working on the use of technology to improve diabetes management and reduce the risk of hypoglycemia in the eldery with T1D (NIDDK DP3-Tango Study) in collaboration with Dr Munshi, and on restoration of hypoglycemia awareness in people with T1D and problematic hypoglycemia in collaboration with Dr Amiel. (JDRF – HARP.doc). She has been recently appointed Director of the Young Adult Clinic in the Adult Diabetes Section at Joslin Diabetes Center.
Ellen S. Glazer, LICSW
Zev Schuman-Olivier, MD
Dr. Schuman-Olivier is the Medical Director, Addictions, Cambridge Health Alliance. He is also an Instructor in Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School and a board-certified addiction psychiatrist with expertise in opioid use disorder treatment and substance abuse treatment for people with co-occurring disorders. After graduating from Tufts University School of Medicine, he completed psychiatry residency at Harvard Medical School (HMS)/Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA), and the HMS addiction psychiatry fellowship. He trained at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Addiction Recovery Management Service, specializing in addiction treatment with young adults. He is a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society opioids task force. He received the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry Young Investigator Award for research on buprenorphine diversion. He is funded through the NIH Science of Behavior Change Initiative to investigate how mindfulness influences self-regulation and medical regimen adherence. With NIDA funding through the Center for Technology and Behavioral Health (www.c4tbh.org) at Dartmouth, he has been developing MySafeRx, an integrated mobile platform for enhancing buprenorphine adherence and diversion prevention among young adults with opioid use disorders. He is on the Board of Directors of the 501(c)3 scientific non-profit organization, MySafeRx, Inc., which aims to develop, evaluate, implement and disseminate technology-based solutions to adherence in mental health and addiction treatment.
Eric Holbrook, MD
Eric H. Holbrook, M.D. graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelors in Science and from the State University of New York Health Science Center in Syracuse with a Masters in Science and a Degree in Medicine. He completed a National Institutes of Health post-doctoral fellowship and residency in otolaryngology at the Medical College of Virginia/Virginia Commonwealth University. He completed further training with a fellowship in Rhinology and Sinus Surgery at the University of Nebraska Medical Center under Dr. Donald Leopold. He has been a member of the full time faculty at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (MEEI) since 2003, is an Associate Professor of Otolaryngology at the Harvard Medical School, and serves as the Chief of the Rhinology Division at MEEI. His principal clinical interests are diseases of the nose and sinuses, chronic rhinosinusitis, endoscopic skull base surgery, and olfactory disorders. His research interests include immunohistochemical characterization of human olfactory tissue, effects of odor exposure on olfactory regeneration, and manipulating human olfactory stem cells for potential restoration of function.
Eve Valera, PhD
Dr. Valera is an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and a Research Scientist at Massachusetts General Hospital. She has been working in the field of domestic violence for nearly 25 years and is recognized internationally for her work in understanding the effects of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) sustained from intimate partner violence (IPV). Her current work uses a range of methodologies to understand the neural, cognitive, and psychological consequences of such TBIs. She published one of the first studies examining the prevalence of IPV-related TBI and its relationship to cognitive and psychological functioning, and has more recently provided the first neural mechanistic evidence of IPV-related TBI.
To support her IPV-TBI work, Dr. Valera has received funding from the National Institutes of Health, Harvard Medical School Center of Excellence in Women’s Health, and more recently the Rappaport Research Fellowship in Neurology. Dr. Valera’s dissemination efforts include lectures for academics, judges and other justice involved personnel, police departments, front-line staff for IPV support and shelter, and women with lived experience. Her research is ongoing and expanding to address other potential neural consequences of TBIs from partner violence.
James Januzzi, MD
James L. Januzzi, MD, is the Hutter Family Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, a staff cardiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, and Senior Cardiometabolic Faculty at Baim Institute for Clinical Research. After completing his undergraduate studies at Holy Cross College in 1988, Dr. Januzzi graduated at the top-ranked student at New York Medical College, and subsequently performed a residency in Internal Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and fellowship in Cardiology and Cardiac Ultrasound at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He joined the Cardiology Division at MGH in 2000.
Dr. Januzzi is a clinician, teacher and clinical trialist. His research has contributed to the understanding of cardiac biomarker testing, where his studies have set international standards for use in diagnosis, prognosis, and management of patients suffering from acutely decompensated heart failure, chronic heart failure as well as those with acute coronary syndromes. Dr Januzzi has published more than 500 manuscripts, book chapters and review articles, has edited two text books on cardiac biomarker testing and the MGH Cardiology Board Review Textbook. He is among the top 1% most cited researchers, according to Clarivate/Web of Science. He is an Associate Editor at both Journal of the American College of Cardiology and Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Heart Failure. He is currently the chair of the American College of Cardiology Task Force on Expert Consensus Decision Pathway Documents and will join the Board of Trustees of the American College of Cardiology in 2019. He has participated in numerous guideline and consensus documents in cardiovascular medicine. Since 2005, Dr. Januzzi has also served on the Medical Staff of the Boston Red Sox Baseball Club.
Nasrien Ibrahim, MD
Nasrien Ibrahim, MD, is a board certified cardiologist in the Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Section within the Division of Cardiology at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She is also Associate Director of the Resynchronization & Cardiac Therapeutics Program at MGH. Dr. Ibrahim takes care of patients with advanced heart failure, left ventricular assist devices, and heart transplants. She completed her internal medicine residency and general cardiology fellowship at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center in Cincinnati, OH. Next, she completed a fellowship in advanced heart failure and cardiac transplant at the University of Colorado in Denver, CO. Following that, Dr. Ibrahim completed a fellowship in clinical research at MGH. She is involved in several research studies in heart failure involving biomarkers and participate in several clinical trials all aimed at improving the management and outcomes of patients with heart failure.
Claire Twark, MD
Dr. Twark is an instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, a board member of the International Society for Sports Psychiatry, and a psychiatrist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital where she directs the Athlete Mind Program. Her interests include addiction psychiatry and sports psychiatry. Dr. Twark ran track and field and cross country for Harvard College, and is now a member of the Boston Triathlon Team. She qualified for and completed the 2014 Ironman World Championship in Hawaii. Based on Ironman results in 2014, she was ranked 18th in the U.S. and 38th in the world (top 1%) in her age group. She is a four-time Ironman triathlon finisher and was awarded All-American Honors from USA Triathlon in 2015. Her own experience as an athlete has inspired her to promote exercise as a component of psychiatric treatment and help other athletes.
Daniel Kuritzkes, MD
Daniel R. Kuritzkes, MD received his BS and MS degrees in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University, and his MD from Harvard Medical School. He completed his clinical and research training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital and was a visiting scientist at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research before joining the faculty at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Dr. Kuritzkes returned to Harvard Medical School in 2002, where he is now the Harriet Ryan Albee Professor of Medicine and Chief, Division of Infectious Diseases at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Dr. Kuritzkes has published extensively on antiretroviral therapy and drug resistance in HIV-1 infection. He has chaired several multicenter studies of HIV therapy and previously chaired the AIDS Clinical Trials Group. He has served on numerous NIH committees, including as a member of the NIH Office of AIDS Research Advisory Council. He is a former member of the Department of Health and Human Services panel on guidelines for antiretroviral therapy and a past Chair of the HIV Medicine Association Board of Directors. He has been a member of several editorial boards, and serves as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Infectious Diseases. His research interests focus on HIV therapeutics, antiretroviral drug resistance, and HIV eradication.
Christian Ruff, MD, MPH
Christian Thomas Ruff, MD, MPH, Director, Genetics Core Laboratory; Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
Christian T. Ruff, MD, MPH is the Director of General Cardiology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Neurobiology and earned his medical degree at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr Ruff is an investigator in the Thrombolysis in Myocardial Infarction (TIMI) Study Group and serves as the Director of the Genetics Core Laboratory and as Co-Director of the Clinical Events Committee. He has specific expertise in atrial fibrillation, risk stratification and implementation of antithrombotic therapy for stroke prevention, as well as the treatment and prevention of venous thromboembolism.
Christopher J. Burns, MD
After spending almost 15 years in the U.S. Navy, with multiple deployments in support of the Global War on Terrorism, Christopher Burns, MD, now practices trauma and acute care surgery, along with burn surgery, and surgical critical care at both the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the South Shore Hospital. Dr. Burns is the Vice-Chair of Critical Care at South Shore Hospital, and an Instructor in Surgery at Harvard Medical School.
Vasanti Malik, ScD
Vasanti Malik, ScD., is a Research Scientist in the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She obtained a MSc. in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Toronto and a dual doctorate in Nutrition and Epidemiology from the Harvard Chan School. Her research focuses on evaluating risk factors for obesity, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease with an emphasis on diet quality. Dr. Malik also studies nutritional drivers of the global obesity and diabetes epidemics in countries undergoing epidemiologic transition and currently directs the Global Nutrition and Epidemiologic Transition Initiative; a collaborative project with 13 low- and- middle income countries that aims to reduce diabetes risk by improving diet and lifestyle. She is an Associate Editor for BMC Obesity and a Review Editor for Frontiers in Public Health. The ultimate goal of Dr. Malik’s work is to inform future large-scale community-based interventions and policy strategies to reduce the risk of obesity and related chronic diseases nationally and globally.
Alessandro Villa, DDS, PhD, MPH
Alessandro Villa, DDS, PhD, MPH, obtained a DDS degree and PhD from Italy, and completed his MPH at A.T. Still University, MO. He served as a postdoctoral fellow at the National Cancer Institute (USA) where he studied the epidemiology of oral HPV infections. Dr. Villa obtained his Certificate in Oral Medicine from Harvard and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is board certified in Oral Medicine. His clinical interests include the treatment of oral mucosal diseases, salivary gland disorders and oral complications from cancer therapy. Dr. Villa’s research interests are focused primarily on potentially malignant disorders of the oral cavity and oral toxicities from cancer treatment.
Guru P. Sonpavde, MD
Guru P. Sonpavde, MD is the director of the bladder cancer program at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School. He completed his medical oncology fellowship at Indiana University. His primary focus is on clinical trials to develop new drugs and combinations to treat urologic cancers, particularly bladder cancer. He also has led translational projects and developed prognostic classifications and endpoints focused on bladder cancer. He is a member of the Genitourinary Committee of Southwest Oncology Group and the Bladder Cancer Task Force of the National Cancer Institute Genitourinary Steering Committee.
Jeremy Whyman, MD
Jeremy Whyman, MD, is a geriatrician, palliative medicine physician and general internist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He is currently board certified in Geriatrics and Internal Medicine with completion of his third board certification in Palliative Medicine, anticipated in early January 2019.
Dr. Whyman completed Internal Medicine residency training at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. During dual fellowship training in both Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in NYC, he focused on preserving and improving quality of life for those with serious illness.
As an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Whyman is a preceptor in the Practice of Medicine course, and is dedicated to teaching medical students. He is the director of outpatient education in the Division of Geriatrics at BIDMC. Dr. Whyman is actively involved in the recruitment, interview and selection process, as well as the training and mentoring of both Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine fellows and Internal Medicine residents at BIDMC. He received specialized training in medical education through the Harvard Macy Institute and Stanford Clinical Teaching Program. He now serves as a faculty member annually at the Harvard Macy Future Academic Clinician Educators Course.