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Leadership Team

Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine Leadership

J. Woodrow Weiss, M.D. Woodrow Weiss
Chief, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, & Sleep Medicine

J. Woodrow Weiss, M.D. is a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and is a member of the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He is also the founder of the Harvard Medical School Division of Sleep Medicine and he remains a member of that Division's Executive Committee. Dr. Weiss is active clinically on the Medical Intensive Care Service at Beth Israel Deaconess. His research focuses on the cardio-respiratory consequences of intermittent hypoxia and arterial pressure control in patients with obstructive sleep apnea. The laboratory uses human volunteers to examine causes of susceptibility to sleep apnea/ of cyclic intermittent hypoxia induced hypertension, and the laboratory uses animal models to study molecular pathways contributing to sustained chemoreflex hypersensitivity and its contribution to elevated arterial pressure after cyclic intermittent hypoxia.

Richard M. Schwartzstein, M.D. Dr Schwartzstein
Associate Division Chief

Dr. Richard M. Schwartzstein is Associate Chief of the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) where he directs one of only two national centers for the study and treatment of dyspnea (shortness of breath). The Asthma and Dyspnea Center at BIDMC specializes in the evaluation of patients with dyspnea of unclear etiology or breathlessness seemingly out of proportion to the patient's known pulmonary problems.

Dr. Schwartzstein's research has linked basic physiology on the control of breathing and respiratory sensations with clinical dyspnea. Dr. Schwartzstein's work has resulted in a greater understanding of the distinct qualitative aspects of dyspnea, the links between the verbal phrases used by patients to describe their breathing discomfort and the underlying pathophysiologic disorders causing dyspnea, and the origins of chest tightness in asthma. In recent years, Dr. Schwartzstein has increased his collaborations with Drs. Robert Banzett and Carl O'Donnell to examine the effect of emotional reactions to unpleasant sensations on the rating of dyspnea, and the role of inhaled furosemide as a potential treatment for air hunger.

Dr. Schwartzstein has a strong interest in medical education and holds several leadership positions in education at BIDMC and Harvard Medical School (HMS). He holds the positions of Vice President for Education at BIDMC and Faculty Associate Dean for Medical Education at HMS. Dr. Schwartzstein has been very active in the curriculum reform process at HMS and created one of the pilot curricula for the third year Principal Clinical Experience. He is also Executive Director of the Shapiro Institute for Education and Research, and course director of Integrated Human Physiology at HMS.

Dr. David RobertsDavid H. Roberts, M.D.
Director, Faculty Development

Dr. David H. Roberts is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS), and he is the Director of Faculty Development for the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in Boston, Massachusetts.

Dr. Roberts' current professional activities at BIDMC and HMS include ambulatory patient care, teaching and administration. His clinical practice as a pulmonologist is focused on patients with dyspnea and pulmonary hypertension, as well as other general pulmonary disorders such as asthma and chronic obstructive lung disease.

Dr. Roberts teaches medical students across the four years of HMS training, with emphasis on both the 2nd year Respiratory Pathophysiology course, and the 3rd year year-long continuity course entitled Principal Clinical Experience at BIDMC. Dr. Roberts also teaches residents, fellows and other physicians in practice, and he is a graduate of the Rabkin Fellowship in Medical Education and Harvard-Macy Program for Educators in Health Professions.

Dr. Roberts is the Associate Director of the Shapiro Institute for Education and Research at BIDMC and he co-directs the annual continuing medical education course for medical educators from around the world, entitled Principles of Medical Education: Maximizing your Teaching Skills. Dr. Roberts is also the Associate Director of the Academy at HMS and his areas of investigation in medical education include understanding students' curiosity, critical thinking skills and use of technology in learning.

Dr. Roberts has won many teaching awards including "Teacher of the Year" (2005) in the Combined Harvard Program in Pulmonary Medicine, HMS Faculty Prize for Excellence in Teaching (2006), the S. Robert Stone Award at BIDMC (2007), and the HMS Award for Best Clinical Instructor at BIDMC (2010).

Dr. AkuthotaPraveen Akuthota, M.D.
BIDMC Site Director for the Harvard Pulmonary & Critical Care Fellowship

Dr. Akuthota is an attending physician in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), serves as the BIDMC Site Director for the Harvard Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship, and is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School. His research efforts center primarily around basic scientific investigations of eosinophil biology. Specific investigations include exploring the role of human eosinophils as antigen presenting cells in allergic inflammation and studies of eosinophil chemotaxis. Dr. Akuthota is a member of the Center for Eosinophilic Disorder at BIDMC, with a clinical interest in the management of eosinophilic pulmonary disorders. He also collaborates closely with the BIDMC Center for Resuscitation Science, participating in translational investigations of septic shock and cardiac arrest.

Dr. BeachDouglas M. Beach, M.D., M.P.H.
Clinical Director for Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine
Medical Director, Pulmonary Function Laboratory

Dr. Douglas M. Beach is the Clinical Director for Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at BIDMC in Boston, Massachusetts. His professional activities are primarily focused on ambulatory pulmonary and sleep medicine, although he is also an attending on the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) and attends on the pulmonary consult service. He is an Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and teaches medical students, residents and fellows in the outpatient clinics, inpatient pulmonary and sleep consultation services, and in the MICU.

His research interests include mechanisms of dyspnea, analyzing exhaled carbon dioxide waveforms in patients being evaluated for asthma, and other collaborations including qualitative measurement of dyspnea in patients with COPD exacerbations. Dr. Beach is the Medical Director of the Pulmonary Function Laboratory and oversees the cardiopulmonary function testing at BIDMC.

Peter Clardy, M.D. 
Director, Medical Critical Care
Program Director, Harvard Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship

Dr. Clardy is an attending physician in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is the Director of Medical Critical Care, and attends both in the medical intensive care unit (MICU) and on the pulmonary consult service. He is the Program Director for the Harvard-wide Fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, and is the Chairman of BIDMC Critical Care Executive Committee.

Dr. Clardy's clinical interests include acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), nosocomial infections, sepsis and pulmonary vascular disease. He is involved in medical education in the hospital and at Harvard Medical School, and is a graduate of the Rabkin Fellowship in Medical Education. Dr. Clardy has received numerous awards for his ongoing commitment to teaching students and trainees, including the Robert Moellering, Herrman Blumgart, and S. Robert Stone awards from Harvard Medical School and BIDMC.

Michael D. Howell, M.D., M.P.H. Michael Howell, MD

Dr. Howell is an intensivist with a particular interest in quality, safety, and healthcare delivery science. He is the Executive Director of BIDMC's Center for Healthcare Delivery Science, and he also serves as BIDMC's Director of Critical Care Quality, a role that has led to BIDMC ICU being nationally recognized as operational leaders in critical care quality and safety. Dr. Howell's research focuses on improving value in healthcare by creating knowledge that helps us to understand the exact level of resources that patients and families need right now, and to test systems of care that provide these resources in a highly reliable, reproducible, and generalizable way. To reach this long-term goal, he focuses on (1) health care quality, (2) quantitative and qualitative assessment of team function, and (3) identification of novel risks for healthcare-acquired complications, with a particular focus on risk prediction. This work has resulted in first-author scholarship in JAMA, Archives of Internal Medicine, and specialty journals. It has also held an interest for the public and has been covered in the New York Times, by CNN, and by Consumer Reports.

Thomas RobertsRobert Joseph Thomas, M.D, M.M.Sc.
Director, Sleep Medicine Training Program
Co-Director, Sleep Center & Clinical Sleep Program

Dr. Thomas is an attending physician in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is the Director of the ACGME-accredited sleep medicine training program, has primarily an outpatient sleep medicine practice but also attends in the in-patient sleep consult service. He is also the co-director of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine-accredited sleep center and clinical sleep program, the director of the Harvard Medical School Sleep Elective, and a host for the AASM International Mini-Fellowship program.

Dr. Thomas's research interests include cognition in sleep disorders, respiratory control during sleep and its treatment in complicated forms of sleep apnea including therapeutic use of low concentration CO2, non-linear signal analysis using the principle of coupled oscillation first demonstrated as the ECG-sleep spectrogram, and brain health in sleep disorders assessed using neuroimaging. He is involved in education from the student to the Fellow level, has designed innovative clinical pathways in clinical sleep medicine, has been awarded 3 patents, and his work is supported through multiple grants from the National Institutes of Health, USA.


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