Celebrating Physicians and Scientists
Dr. Donald Goldstein and Dr. Robert Barbieri
For the past 50 years, Donald P. Goldstein, MD, has served as a member of the BWH Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a leader in the fields of gynecology and pediatric and adolescent gynecology.
"Dr. Goldstein is the apotheosis of the clinical scholar who has made many contributions to the treatment of trophoblastic disease (placental tumors that grow inside the uterus and can metastasize to the liver, lungs and brain) and helped to develop the field of pediatric and adolescent gynecology," said Robert Barbieri, MD, chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology and chair of the BWPO, at the Nov. 5 Brigham and Women's Physician Recognition Dinner.
The event was an opportunity for physicians, scientists and leadership to come together to celebrate years of service-with Goldstein topping the list at 50 years-and contributions to patient care, research, teaching and community service.
Goldstein, who completed his residency at BWH, spent two years at the National Cancer Institute helping to develop chemo-treatment protocols to cure choricarcinoma - a quickly growing placental cancer and one of the first cancers that, at advanced stages, could be reliably cured with a combination of surgery and chemotherapy. He is the founding director of the New England Trophoblastic Disease Center - one of the most active clinical and research units in the country.
In total, 555 physicians and scientists were honored for years of service, from five to 50 years. Those with 45 years of service include: K. Frank Austen, MD, of Rheumatology, Immunology and Allergy; Albert L. Sheffer, II, MD, of Rheumatology, Immunology and Allergy; Amnon Wachman, MD, of the Brigham and Women's Physician Group; Gordon Williams, MD, of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Hypertension; Warren Becker, MD, of Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center; J. Gregory Kane, MD, of Obstetrics and Gynecology; and Roger Christian, MD, of Surgical Oncology. (View video interviews with service award honorees Goldstein, Austen and Florencia Pereyra, MD.)
"The work you've done, whether it's in science, research, teaching, clinical or community service, is extraordinary," said BWPO President Allen Smith, MD, MS, to the service award recipients.
The BWPO also recognized six physicians and scientists with prestigious recognition awards for clinical collaboration, innovation, community service, patient- and family-centered care and leadership. "All of the nominees for these awards are truly inspiring," said Jessica Dudley, MD, chief medical officer for the BWPO.
BWPO Honorees Dr. Joshua Kosowsky, Dr. Richard Baum, Dr. Julian Seifter,
Dr. Louise Schneider, Dr. Bohdan Pomahac and Dr. Thomas Sequist.
Clinical Collaboration: Louise I. Schneider, MD, Medicine
From her work as associate medical director of the BWPO, through her longstanding and ongoing contributions to the LMR teams, to her service on a number of critical interdepartmental committees, Louise Schneider has exhibited a willingness to work across the many silos that too often prevent ideal communication and care coordination in complex academic medical centers. According to her nomination, she is a true "quadruple threat" with experience in teaching, clinical research, patient care and administration/management.
Clinical Innovation: Joshua M. Kosowsky, MD, Emergency Medicine
As clinical director of the Emergency Department, Joshua Kosowsky was given a broad mandate to lead the entire redesign process that began in 2009 - from concept to implementation with a clear challenge of dramatically shortening patient wait times and improving every single metric of care. Not a single existing aspect of emergency care was left intact - Kosowsky and his team reinvented traditional roles and set aside long-standing emergency medicine concepts, such as nursing triage and acuity-based units. The early results were impressive: ED walk-outs dropped from a historic rate of 2.5 percent to an all-time low of 1 percent. Average length of stay dropped to 3.6 hours, an astounding 30 percent lower than the average in FY'09. The mean time from patient arrival to bed was 18 minutes, 72 percent lower than the FY'09 average, and the Press Ganey scores jumped to the 88th percentile - the best ever in the ED.
Clinical Innovation: Bohdan Pomahac, MD, Surgery
Bohdan Pomahac, director of Plastic Surgery Transplantation, was the driving force behind the establishment of BWH's innovative facial transplant program. He created an IRB protocol, labored on the development of the program and education of staff and worked with the New England Organ Bank. Because of this program, patients who were severely disfigured in horrific accidents are now able to breathe, speak, eat, feel their faces and smile in just months after the extensive procedures - nothing short of a miracle. In recognizing the potential of this life-giving procedure, the U.S. Department of Defense awarded BWH $3.4 million over 18 months to provide six to eight facial transplants to veterans and patients with the most severe injuries.
Clinical Community Service: Thomas Sequist, MD, MPH, Medicine
During the past 17 years, Thomas Sequist has devoted an extraordinary amount of his time to supporting the under-resourced needs of the Native American population through innovative programs that address disparities. For the past two years, he has served as medical director of the Brigham and Women's Outreach Program with the Indian Health Service. Under his leadership, more than 50 physicians have volunteered their time in New Mexico to provide patient care and teaching. He also serves as director of the HMS/BWH Four Directions Summer Research Program, which sponsors summer research positions and career mentorship for undergraduate Native American students. A member of the Taos Pueblo tribe in New Mexico, Sequist is widely admired as a humble and modest leader at BWH.
James S. Winshall, MD, Leadership Award: Richard A. Baum, MD, MPA, Radiology
Richard Baum was recruited to BWH Radiology 10 years ago as the first incumbent of the Herbert L. Abrams Directorship in Interventional Radiology. Immediately, he demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and initiated a complex change management process. The section's faculty turned over, and a new, larger cohort of clinically savvy, patient care-oriented staff were brought in. Clinical operations and efficiency improved dramatically. Baum introduced improved safety standards, recruited Radiology's first mid-level providers and expanded resident/fellow training programs. He established a culture of quality, safety and service excellence by building a robust multidisciplinary team. He also has organized dozens of community screenings and counseling programs for vascular disease patients to bring screening and health promotion services directly to patients.
Patient and Family-Centered Care: Julian L. Seifter, MD, Medicine
Patients referred to Julian Seifter universally praise his clinical care, expressing confidence and gratitude that they are in excellent hands. They comment on his superb bedside manner; he is able to explain an illness to a patient while conveying dedication, humor, honesty and kindness. Seifter and his wife, Betsy, recently wrote "After the Diagnosis: Transcending Chronic Illness," a book that tells the stories of patients who have found creative solutions to living with an illness that is never going away. He also tells his own story of being diagnosed with chronic illness, and how this double perspective as both patient and doctor has enriched his understanding of healing. An active clinician both in his practice and on the renal consultation service, Julian Seifter is the "go to" person for complicated acid base disturbances. Because he is always enthusiastic about receiving questions and consults, his colleagues, trainees and students never feel that he is too busy to help with a clinical problem.