Professor, Department of Health Policy and Management
Harvard Medical School
President and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement
Founding Interfaculty Initiative on Advanced Leadership Executive Board Member, 2006 - 2010
Donald M. Berwick, MD, MPP, is president and chief executive officer of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI). The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) is a nonprofit organization leading the improvement of health care throughout the world. Founded in 1991 and based in Boston, MA, IHI is a catalyst for change, cultivating innovative concepts for improving patient care and implementing programs for putting those ideas into action. Thousands of health care providers participate in IHI's groundbreaking work.
Dr. Berwick is Clinical Professor of Pediatrics and Health Care Policy at the Harvard Medical School and professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is also a pediatrician, an associate in pediatrics at Boston's Children's Hospital, and a consultant in pediatrics at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Berwick has published over 130 scientific articles in numerous professional journals on subjects relating to health care policy, decision analysis, technology assessment, and health care quality management. His research and commentaries have appeared in The Journal of the American Medical Association, The New England Journal of Medicine, The British Medical Journal, and others. Books he has co-authored include Curing Health Care, New Rules: Regulation, Markets and the Quality of American Health Care, and Cholesterol, Children with Heart Disease: An Analysis of Alternatives.
Dr. Berwick was chair of the Health Services Research Review Study Section of the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research from 1995 - 1999, and chair of the National Advisory Council of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality from 1999 through 2001. He was vice chair of the US Preventive Services Task Force from 1990 through 1996. From 1996 through 1999, Dr. Berwick served as the first independent member of the Board of Trustees of the American Hospital Association. He also served from 1989 through 1991 as a member of the Panel of Judges for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award program. He is a member of several editorial boards, including that of the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA). From 1987 through 1991, Dr. Berwick was co-founder and co-principal investigator for the National Demonstration Project (NDP) on Quality Improvement in Health Care. He is a past president of the International Society for Medical Decision-Making. He is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences and since 2002 has served on the IOM's governing council and as the liaison to the IOM's Global Health Board. Dr. Berwick was appointed by President Clinton to serve on the Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Healthcare Industry in 1997 and 1998. Co-chaired by the secretaries of health and human services and labor, the Commission was charged with developing a broader understanding of the issues facing rapidly evolving healthcare delivery systems and to help build consensus on ways to assure and improve the quality of health care.
Dr. Berwick has received numerous awards and honors for his work, including the 1999 Ernest A. Codman Award and, in 2001, the first Alfred I. DuPont Award for excellence in children's health care from Nemours, one of the nation's largest pediatric health care provider organizations. In 2002, he was given the Award of Honor from the American Hospital Association for outstanding leadership in improving health care quality, and in 2004 he was inducted as a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London. In 2005, in recognition of his exemplary work for the National Health Service in the UK, he was appointed honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire—the highest award given to non-British citizens.
A summa cum laude graduate of Harvard College, Dr. Berwick holds a master of public policy degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Government and an MD cum laude from Harvard Medical School. The father of four children (Ben, Dan, Jessica, and Rebecca), he is married to Ann (Greenberg) Berwick, an environmental attorney and former chief of the Environmental Protection Division in the Massachusetts attorney general's office.