Photo of Leslie S. Kerzner, MD

Leslie S. Kerzner, MD

  • Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
  • Associate Director, Special Care Nursery
  • Co-Director, Newborn Developmental Follow-up Program


Accepting New Patients




Centers & Specialties

MassGeneral Hospital for Children

Clinical Interests
  • Neonatal abstinence syndrome
  • Developmental outcome of prematurity
  • Opioid addiction
  • Parenting a sick newborn
  • Comfort and support after neonatal loss
  • Breastfeeding
  • Neonatology
Medical Education
  • MD, University of Vermont College of Medicine
  • Residency, Hasbro Children's Hospital/Lifespan
  • Fellowship, Women and Infants Hospital/Care New England
Board Certifications
  • Pediatrics
  • Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine
  • Boston: Massachusetts General Hospital
Existing Patients
Patient Gateway
Insurances Accepted
  • Aetna Health Inc.
  • AllWays Health (NHP) - ACD
  • AllWays Health (NHP) - PBO
  • Beech Street
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Blue Care 65
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Indemnity
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Managed Care
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield - Partners Plus
  • BMC HealthNet Mass Health MCO/ACO
  • Cigna (PAL #'s)
  • Commonwealth Care Alliance
  • Fallon Community HealthCare
  • Great-West Healthcare (formally One Health Plan)
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Plan - ACD
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Plan - PBO
  • Health Care Value Management (HCVM)
  • Humana/Choice Care PPO
  • MassHealth
  • Medicare
  • Medicare - ACD
  • OSW - Maine
  • OSW - New Hampshire
  • OSW - Rhode Island
  • OSW - Vermont
  • Private Health Care Systems (PHCS)
  • Senior Whole Health
  • TriCare
  • Tufts Health Plan
  • Unicare
  • United Healthcare (non-HMO) - ACD
  • United Healthcare (non-HMO) - PBO
  • Well Sense Pediatrics

Note: This provider may accept more insurance plans than shown; please call the practice to find out if your plan is accepted.

Patient Age Group
Provider Gender


Dr. Leslie Kerzner is the Associate Medical Director of the Special Care Nursery at MGH. She is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.  She is the Director of the Newborn Developmental Follow-up Clinic  and the Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) program at MGH.  Dr. Kerzner completed a 3 year post-graduate fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine at Women & Infants' Hospital at Brown University (1998-2001).  She completed a 2 year residency in Pediatrics and a 1 year internship in Pediatrics/Adult & Child Psychiatry also at Brown University (1995-1998). She attended medical school at the University of Vermont (1995) and received a B.A. in psychology from Boston University (1988). She is board certified in both General Pediatrics and Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine. Dr. Kerzner is certified in the Neonatal Behavioral Observation system and has been a trainer at the Brazelton Institute at Children's Hospital, Boston.

Currently, Dr. Kerzner attends in both the Newborn ICU and Special Care Nurseries at MGH and directs the Newborn Developmental Follow-up Clinic at Yawkey to follow high risk infant development.  Dr. Kerzner directs a multi-disciplinary NAS Working Group to improve the care of  families and infants affected by opiate use in pregnancy and NAS.  She provides consultation during pregnancy to women who take opiates and has developed protocols for caring for the infants affected by NAS.  She runs the Quality Improvement projects related to NAS in the division, and she represents MGH at the state NeoQic NAS Collaborative and the Vermont Oxford Network national INICQ NAS Collaborative.  She sits on the MGH Opioid Task Force and the OB Substance Use Disorder Committee.  In 2016, she was appointed to the Advisory Council to Support the Interagency Task Force on Newborns with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome with the MA Executive Office of Health and Human Services.

Research & Publications

Research Summary
Substance Abusing mothers and their infants.
Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
  1. Kerzner, LS, Stonestreet, BS, Wu, KY, Petersson, KH, Sadowska, G, McKnight, AJ, and Malee, MP. Effects of single versus repetitive dosing of antenatal dexamethasone (DEX) on ovine placental 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 (11ß-HSD-2) expression and fetal growth. Abstract in Pediatric Research, 2000;47:72A.
  2. Kerzner, LS, Stonestreet, BS, Wu, KY, Sadowska, GB and Malee, MP. Antenatal dexamethasone: Effect on ovine placental 11-beta-hydroxysteriod dehydrogenase type 2 expression and fetal growth. Pediatric Research, 52(5):706-712,2002.
  3. Desai, Rishi J.; Huybrechts, Krista F.; Hernandez-Diaz, Sonia; Mogun, Helen; Patorno, Elisabetta; Kaltenbach, Karol; Kerzner, Leslie S.; Bateman, Brian T. 2015, Vol. 351 (8022), 2102-h2102

News & Events

  • A preemie's testament to resiliency: Shea's story

    When Shea Tufts was born premature at 27 weeks, the Neonatal care team did CPR for 12 nerve-wracking minutes to help her heart beat on its own. Now an energetic preschooler, Shea's rocky first few months paved the way for her to thrive.

  • Providing Appropriate Care to Pregnant Women with Substance Use Disorder

    The clinicians who care for infants with neonatal abstinence syndrome have established extensive treatment protocols to control withdrawal symptoms, which prevents many children from suffering short and long-term effects.

  • Doctors help babies born addicted to heroin

    Teens, adults, and now the rise of a new generation affected by the opioid crisis. According to federal statistics, every 25 seconds a baby is born-- helpless and hooked on opioids. Their battle to get clean is heart-wrenching.

  • As Mass. Grapples With Opioid Crisis, More Babies Are Being Born Exposed To Drugs

    Massachusetts hospitals are seeing evidence that the opioid epidemic is affecting the next generation, with an increasing number of babies being born exposed to drugs. The most recent state hospital data suggest that the rate of drug-dependent newborns has skyrocketed to about 16 in every 1,000 births — about three times the national average.

  • A New Direction On Drugs

    After 40 years and a trillion dollars, the nation has little to show for its war on drugs. Prisons are beyond crowded and there's a new outbreak in the heroin epidemic.

  • Natalia's Story: Compassionate Care Helps Premature Infant Thrive

    Natalia Nowakowski was born prematurely at 29 weeks with a host of medical issues. With help from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the Special Care Nursery and the Newborn Developmental Follow-Up Clinic at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Natalia, now 3 years old, is a thriving as a happy, healthy preschooler with a love for music and dance.


Neonatal Critical Care Unit
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114-2696
Phone 1: 617-724-9040
Phone 2: 617-724-9016
Fax: 617-724-9346

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