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Erik P. Hess MD MSc was born in New York City and grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. Raised in a loving family that highly valued education and hard work, he left Tennessee to attend college in Wheaton, Illinois where he graduated magna cum laude with a major in philosophy. He subsequently obtained his Medical Doctorate at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and completed residency training in Emergency Medicine and fellowship training in Critical Care Medicine at the Mayo Clinic. Through these training experiences he developed a passion for academic scholarship, and he subsequently completed a clinical research fellowship and a Master of Science in Epidemiology in Ottawa, Canada under the mentorship of Dr. Ian Stiell, one of the top 5 researchers in Emergency Medicine. He then returned to the Mayo Clinic in 2008 where he joined the faculty. During his time at Mayo, he established the Division of Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine which he led as Vice Chair. In the process of leading clinical trials, Dr. Hess developed a passion for influencing individuals and health systems to put the needs of the patient first. He was subsequently recruited to the UAB Department of Emergency Medicine as Vice Chair of Research, where his patient-centered focus was galvanized by the need to mitigate healthcare disparities so each patient is treated with dignity and respect, regardless of their personal characteristics or how they enter the healthcare system. It is these values – patient centeredness and human dignity – that guide and fuel his leadership, in addition to a desire to pay forward the investment others have made in his development and launch leaders who pour themselves out for others to make a difference. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, fitness, smoking meat, and trying out new restaurants in Nashville.


Erik Hess, MD, MSc

Department Chair
Clinical Service Chief
Professor of Emergency Medicine

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