President, Brigham and Women's Health Care
Betsy Nabel has served as President of Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital (BWFH) since 2010. A cardiologist and distinguished biomedical researcher, Nabel is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.
Nabel brings a unique perspective to health care based on her broad experience as a physician, clinician, research scientist, academic medicine leader, and wellness advocate. She understands first-hand the implications of the dynamically changing health care environment.
At Brigham and Women's, she has led development of a comprehensive strategic plan that defines a new model of medicine characterized by greater cross-disciplinary collaboration, patient-inclusive care, and innovation in personalized therapies and translational medicine. Important initiatives include a new translational medical facility focused on the neurosciences, patient- and family-centered innovations in ICU care, and a $1 billion campaign to advance discovery and innovation, patient care and community health.
Nabel is also a champion for patient safety and affordability. At Brigham and Women’s she launched a groundbreaking initiative to encourage greater transparency around medical errors and patient safety. She also is leading an institution-wide initiative to deliver better quality care at lower cost.
Nabel has a long track record of advocacy for health, wellness and broadening access to care. Prior to joining Brigham and Women’s, Nabel served as Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute from 2005-2009. She leveraged the $3 billion research portfolio to establish pioneering scientific programs in genomics, stem cells, and translational research. One of Nabel’s signature advocacy efforts was the Red Dress Heart Truth campaign, which raises heart awareness in women through innovative partnerships between government and private industry, including Diet Coke and New York Fashion Week.
Throughout her career, Nabel has been a champion for global health. At the NHLBI, she established Centers of Excellence in developing countries to combat cardiovascular and lung diseases. Nabel launched the Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases, a group of national research institutions that address chronic diseases around the world. At Brigham and Women's she has helped create a national teaching hospital in Haiti and is advancing training for clinical providers in under-resourced countries. She has worked hands-on in Kenya, Rwanda and Haiti to extend health care services to people in need. She serves on the board of Partners In Health, an organization with close ties to Brigham and Women's.
An accomplished physician-scientist, Nabel’s work on the molecular genetics of cardiovascular diseases has produced17 patents and more than 250 scientific publications. Her colleagues have recognized her excellence in leadership by electing her to the American Academy of the Arts and Sciences and the Institute of Medicine, and she is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
She continues to be actively involved with shaping future medical research agendas, serving on the Boards of Research America and the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, as well as the Medical Advisory Board of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. As a founding member of the Health Care Cost Institute, Nabel is actively involved in shaping research and policy on national health care spending.
Nabel’s honors and awards include the Willem Einthoven Award from Leiden University in the Netherlands; the Amgen-Scientific Achievement Award from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; two Distinguished Achievement Awards from the American Heart Association; and six honorary doctorates. Washingtonian Magazine named Nabel oneof the 100 most powerful women.
A native of St. Paul, Minnesota, Nabel attended Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City and did her internal medicine and cardiovascular training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She and her husband Gary, who is the Chief Scientific Officer for Sanofi, also serve as inspiration to their three children, all of whom are pursuing careers in medicine.
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This page was last modified on 9/12/2013