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Program Faculty

Herrman L. Blumgart Internal Medicine Firm

Firm Chief: Wendy Stead, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Program Director, Infectious Disease Fellowship BIDMC

Dr.Stead is an Infectious Diseases specialist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She received her bachelor's degree in English Literature from George Washington University and her MD from the University of Massachusetts. She completed a residency in internal medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in 2000, staying on to serve as a Chief Medical Resident. She completed her fellowship in Infectious Diseases at BIDMC in 2003 and joined the faculty with a joint appointment in both the division of Infectious Diseases and the division of General Medicine and Primary Care. 

She has been actively involved in teaching at both BIDMC and HMS. She served as Co-director of the Medicine Subinternship at BIDMC before assuming her current positions as Program Director of the ID fellowship and Associate Firm Chief of the Robinson Medical Firm. As a faculty member since 2003, she has won teaching awards in the Department of Medicine and the Infectious Diseases division. She is a regular lecturer at several Harvard CME courses. She completed a Rabkin Fellowship in Medical Education at the Carl J.Shapiro Institute for Education and Research in 2010 and continues to engage in medical education research in the areas of Interprofressional Education and Infectious Diseases curriculum development. 

After many years of serving as the Associate Firm Chief of the Robinson Firm, Wendy has recently been appointed to lead the Blumgart Firm.  Dr. Stead is married to Jay Jakimczyk, a pediatrician practicing in Acton MA. They have two children, Nicky and Isabel.

Associate Firm Chief: Daniel Leffler, MD, MS

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Director of Research, Celiac Center at BIDMC 

Dr. Daniel Leffler currently serves as the Director of Research at the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, as the Director of Quality Improvement for the Division of Gastroenterology at BIDMC and is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. 

Dr. Leffler currently divides his time between patient care, quality improvement initiatives and clinical and translational research in celiac disease and other digestive disorders.  Dr. Leffler has been the recipient of a five year career development grant from the National Institute of Health as well as multiple foundation and industry sponsored grants for the advancement of digestive health.  He lectures nationally and internationally on these topics and has co-authored a book for patients entitled: Real Life with Celiac Disease. Troubleshooting and Thriving Gluten Free, published by the American Gastroenterological Association. 

George S. Kurland Internal Medicine Firm

Firm Chief: James Heffernan, MD, MPH

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Primary Care Section Chief, Division of General Medicine & Primary Care

Dr. Heffernan is the Medical Director of Healthcare Associates (HCA), the academic, hospital-based, primary care practice of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He is also an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Kurland Firm Chief. In his role as Medical Director of HCA, Dr. Heffernan oversees the care of a diverse and medically complex population of 40,000 patients who seek care at the level of 100,000 visits annually with their providers in HCA - faculty, housestaff, nurse practitioners and licensed clinical social workers. As Kurland Firm Chief, he works on the inpatient service teaching, mentoring and supporting the quarter of the medical housestaff assigned to Kurland Firm for the 3 years of their training.

Dr. Heffernan is a cum laude graduate in Chemistry from Harvard College and an Alpha Omega Alpha and magna cum laude graduate of the Boston University School of Medicine. He did his housestaff training followed by a Chief Residency at the Boston City Hospital and joined the faculty at BCH and the Boston University School of Medicine in July 1981. He served in a number of roles during the following 15 years at BCH: primary care physician, emergency department physician and paramedic control physician, Director of the General Medicine Consultation Service, Associate Director of the inpatient medical service, and others. He obtained his Masters in Public Health from the Boston University School of Public Health in 1992.

In July of 1996 he joined the faculty of the Beth Israel Hospital as the Medical Director of HCA, a role he has held to the present.

Dr. Heffernan has edited/authored one medical textbook on acute care medicine and has contributed chapters to a number of ambulatory texts. His clinical interests include back pain, consultation medicine, the medical effects of alcohol and the management of alcohol withdrawal and the use of newer technologies in supporting medical decision-making. He has been a regular speaker at CME courses at both BU and Harvard and more recently at PriMed. He has received teaching awards as a faculty member at both BCH and BIDMC. He has also been active in the Society of General Internal Medicine, as a founder of their Innovations in Practice Management initiative and chairman of a number of review committees. He served on the SGIM National Program Committee as a committee chairperson for the 2008 meeting.

Dr. Heffernan is married to M. Anita Barry, MD, MPH, the Director of Communicable Disease Control for the City of Boston and an infectious diseases specialist and Director of the Tuberculosis Clinic at Boston Medical Center. They have two children - Caityand Tim. They live with their two golden retrievers, on the South Shore.

Associate Firm Chief: John Doweiko, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Doweiko was born and raised in Rhode Island and recieved his undergraduate degree at at Providence College and graduated from Brown University for Medical School. After completed his internship and residency at the old New England Deaconess Hospital, Dr. Doweiko was the Chief Medical Resident. His completed his fellowship training (in both infectious diseases and in hematology-oncology) at the Brigham and Women's Hospital . In 1991, Dr. Doweiko became part of the Medical Staff at the Deaconess Hospital. He is a member of the Division of Infectious Disease and the Division of Hematology and Oncology.

The majority of his time is spent doing clinical work and teaching. Dr. Doweiko is involved in several clinical research trials using new medications to treat HIV infection and the oncologic complications of HIV infection. He is also doing some basic science research on the interactions of glycated hemoglobin and platelet function.

Dr. Doweiko is the Associate Chief of the Kurland Firm and has been awarded several awards for teaching in the inpatient and outpatient settings both from the Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital and the Harvard Medical School.

Stephen H. Robinson Internal Medicine Firm

Firm Chief: Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Program Director, Rheumatology Fellowship Program BIDMC 

Dr. Shmerling is a graduate of Tufts University (1979) and Harvard Medical School (1983); he completed his internship and residency training at Beth Israel Hospital in 1986 and a combined Primary Care and Rheumatology Fellowship at Beth Israel and Brigham and Women's Hospital in 1989. He is currently an Associate Physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and is an active teacher in the Internal Medicine Residency Program, serving as Associate Firm Chief of the Robinson Firm from 1991 to 1998 and as its Firm Chief from 1998 through the present. He is also Program Director for the BIDMC Rheumatology Fellowship Program. His clinical interests include gout, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. He has published research and review articles exploring the usefulness of commonly ordered diagnostic tests including the rheumatoid factor, anti-nuclear antibody (ANA), anti-neutrophilic cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA) and analyses of synovial fluid. Currently, he is working on a study examining the early experience with anti-cyclic citrullinated protein (anti-CCP) testing. He also serves as a Senior Editor of Internet Publishing at Harvard Health Publications and is a regular reviewer for the New England Journal of Medicine, Arthritis and Rheumatism and Arthritis Care and Research. He is married to Lisa Carron Shmerling, an attorney, and has two daughters.

Associate Firm Chief: John Butter, MD  
Dr. John Butter

Dr. John Butter is a graduate of Williams College (1985) and Northwestern University Medical School (1991). He completed his internship and residency at Beth Israel Hospital in 1994 and is passionate about his career as a general internist and medical educator. 

At Dartmouth Medical School,  Dr. Butter served on the General Internal Medicine faculty from 1994 to 1997 where he directed ambulatory education for the Dartmouth medical residents.

In 1997, he joined the General Medicine faculty at Northwestern University in Chicago where he served as associate professor of medicine until 2015.  In his 18 year tenure at Northwestern Medical School,  he served as a Firm Chief,  Associate Residency Director in charge of Ambulatory Education, and  Director of the Clinical Education Center.  He was instrumental in the design and implementation of the innovative clinical skills education component of Northwestern’s undergraduate medical curriculum renewal from 2012 to 2014.  He has also held national education leadership positions with the Society of General Internal Medicine including Chair of the Practice Committee and Chair of the Quality and Practice Innovation Award Committee.  His research interests including simulation in medical education in which rigorous practice and feedback demonstrated improved clinical skills.

Dr. Butter currently practices General Internal Medicine at Health Care Associates where his interests include diagnostic dilemmas and the interplay of medical illness and emotional distress.

Dr. Butter’s return to BIDMC in 2015 was motivated by his wife, the Reverend Sarah Butter, accepting a call to serve as head of staff of The Village Church in Wellesley where they live with their two daughters, ages 11 and 13.   He is delighted to continue his medical career at BIDMC and finds great joy and satisfaction in working with patients, learners and colleagues to advance the best possible practice of medicine.

James Tullis Internal Medicine Firm

Firm Chief: Sanjiv Chopra, MDDr. Sanjiv Chopra

Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Sanjiv Chopra is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.  He is also the James Tullis Firm Chief in the Department of Medicine and a Senior Consultant in Hepatology at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston. He served as Faculty Dean for Continuing Education at HMS for 12 years. Dr. Chopra has more than 150 publications and seven books to his credit.  Dr. Chopra is  Editor-in-Chief of the Hepatology Section of UpToDate, the most widely used electronic textbook in the world subscribed to by more than 850,000 physicians in 149 countries.

Associate Firm Chief: Deepa Rangachari, MD

Instructor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Associate Program Director, Hematology/Oncology Fellowship BIDMC
Dr. Deepa Rangachari
Dr. Rangachari is a medical oncologist in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at BIDMC, with a focus on thoracic and breast oncology. She received her BA in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Dartmouth College and her MD from the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. She subsequently completed her post-graduate training in Internal Medicine and Hematology/Oncology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, where she served as Assistant Chief of Service of the Longcope Firm and Chief Fellow in the Departments of Medicine and Oncology, respectively.

Her clinical and academic interests include management of advanced thoracic and breast malignancies, with an emphasis on palliative care and integration of targeted therapeutic strategies. She is additionally involved in evaluating behavioral outcomes following development and implementation of novel curricula for housestaff and fellows in Internal Medicine and Hematology/Oncology, respectively, and has completed formal training in curriculum development during her time at Johns Hopkins. In addition to her role as Associate Chief for the Tullis Firm, Dr. Rangachari serves as Associate Program Director for the Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program at BIDMC.

Deepa hails from the suburbs of Chicago, but has made Boston her home since joining the faculty at BIDMC in 2014, along with her husband Dr. Robert Hallowell (Division of Pulmonary/Critical Care). Deepa and Rob have 2 children.

Contact Information

Residency Training Program
Internal Medicine
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
West Campus, Deaconess Building, Suite 306
One Deaconess Road
Boston, MA 02215