beth israel deaconess medical center a harvard medical school teaching hospital

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About Us

Mission Statement:  To improve the lives of patients with critical illness, disorders of the chest, lungs and airways, and disorders of sleep, through extraordinary and personalized patient care, world-class education, and innovative research. 

The Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at the BIDMC provides comprehensive subspecialty services and compassionate care for patients with critical illness, thoracic diseases and sleep-related disorders.  The Division maintains active and exemplary roles in teaching the next generation of physicians, and through innovative research creates new knowledge to advance our understanding of disease and to promote health.

The faculty, research associates and staff members are devoted to the pursuit of excellence in each of the following activities and services provided by the Division:

Clinical services:

  • Medical ICU care
  • Inpatient Pulmonary Consultation
  • Ambulatory Pulmonary Consultation (including urgent visits)
  • Supervision of pulmonary rehabilitation services
  • Pulmonary Function Laboratory testing and interpretation
  • Interventional Pulmonary procedures
  • Sleep Disorders Clinic
  • Sleep Study Facility (inpatient)
  • Interstitial Lung Disease Center

Educational activities:

  • Combined Harvard Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship program
  • Sleep Fellowship program
  • Interventional Pulmonary Fellowship program
  • CME programs for physicians and healthcare providers
  • Teaching of medical students, residents, and patients

Research programs:

  • Macrophage cell molecular biology in host defenses
  • Sleep physiology
  • Physiology and treatment of dyspnea and respiratory sensations
  • ICU quality care and improvement and clinical outcomes
  • Diagnosis and staging of chest lesions using minimally invasive techniques
  • Non-surgical treatment of airway lesions
  • Pulmonary fibrosis drug treatment trials
  • Novel therapies for asthma and emphysema treatment

In the medical ICU, Division members provide supervision and state-of-the-art care for patients with a variety of complex critical illnesses.  To promote outstanding and quality medical care to critically ill patients, members of the Division have developed and implemented several key initiatives, including:  1) innovative evidence-based protocols to standardize treatment for specific conditions such as severe sepsis;  2)  extensive use of computers for patient monitoring, record keeping, and medication ordering to facilitate information transfer and enhance patient safety;  and 3)  first academic medical center in Boston to provide "round-the-clock" on-site ICU supervision by senior critical care specialists 7 days per week.

The Pulmonary Consultation service provides comprehensive and timely evaluations for both inpatients and ambulatory patients with a wide variety of pulmonary symptoms, radiographic abnormalities and respiratory diseases.  Specific programs such as the Asthma and Dyspnea Center provide unique diagnostic and therapeutic services for patients with subacute or chronic symptoms of shortness of breath, and the management of patients with marginal lung function who require surgery.  Working closely with multidisciplinary teams and the nationally recognized Interventional Pulmonology Service, members of the Division have state-of-the-art radiological and bronchoscopic techniques to improve the diagnosis of and perform therapeutic interventions for tumors of the lungs and chest, structural airways disorders and pleural diseases.

The Sleep Disorders service provides state-of-the-art evaluation and management of patients with suspected or documented sleep disorders, and medical conditions related to sleep disturbance.  The Sleep Disorder Clinic evaluates both ambulatory patients and inpatients with urgent sleep issues, and has a state-of-the-art inpatient sleep laboratory facility to provide comprehensive multidisciplinary approach to evaluations, and assessing therapeutic interventions such as non-invasive positive pressure ventilation (including CPAP or BiPAP).  Novel therapeutic approaches to the management of complex sleep disordered breathing are being developed by Division members.

Research remains a vital component of Division activities.  Division members maintain NIH-based research on basic mechanisms of disease pathogenesis and on the clinical expression of those diseases.   Clinical research focuses on medical ICU outcomes, and the utility and efficacy of various interventional procedures.  Basic laboratory investigations seek to define the mechanisms of pathogen recognition by lung macrophages in the context of host defense function, identifying the roles of critical innate immune receptors in directing and regulating specific host cell innate immune responses.  Physiologic investigations examine the nature of the sympathetic nervous system response to hypoxia, and the mechanisms and behavioral factors underlying breathing discomfort.  Ongoing human and animal studies address mechanisms of altered cardiovascular control in sleep apnea and the neurocognitive consequences of sleep apnea and sleep deprivation.  Investigators also provide in-depth training in the methods and approaches of biomedical research to train future scientists.

Teaching remains an essential component of Division activities.  As a major teaching hospital for Harvard Medical School, and with the largest Internal Medicine house staff program in the Boston area, Division members teach and provide leadership roles in the education of medical students and medical residents, both in the classroom and at the bedside.  All of the major Harvard Medical School courses related to respiratory physiology and pathophysiology are taught and directed by Division members.  Numerous Division members have won Harvard and national recognition with a broad range of teaching awards.  BIDMC Division members also teach fellows as one of the three HMS teaching hospitals that comprise the joint Combined Harvard Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship Program, in addition to teaching and administrative responsibilities for BIDMC fellowships in Sleep Medicine and Interventional Pulmonology.

The faculty, trainees, and staff of our Division are committed to the fulfillment of the mission of the Division, the BIDMC, and HMS.  To learn more about the breadth and depth of our services and academic activities, please select the areas of interest located on the menu at the left.   We actively seek partnerships with colleagues, trainee candidates, residents, students, patients and organizations devoted to the treatment and study of lung disease, sleep disorders, and critical illness.

Contact Information

Division of Pulmonology, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine
Department of Medicine
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
330 Brookline Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
617.667.5864