50 years of service
"One of the most significant breakthroughs in my career was the publication of our study on microscopic neurobiological abnormalities observed in the postmortem brain of a patient who had autism in 1985. Before this publication, autism was believed to be caused by poor parenting. We were now able to show that autism was caused by abnormalities in the brain, probably of prenatal origin. This then set up a total shift to seeing autism as a neurodevelopmental disorder and the continued shift for causes, effective interventions and diagnostic biomarkers."
"The second major breakthrough was the development of of the multidisciplinary Learning and Developmental Evaluation and Rehabilitation Services (LADDERS) Program for children, adolescents and adults with a wide variety of special needs, with a major focus on autism. The LADDERS model became the model for what is now the Autism Treatment Network (ATN), which involves similar programs throughout the U.S. and Canada. LADDERS has since become the Lurie Center."
"I also founded the Autism Research Consortium and the Autism Research Foundation, which continues to support basic science research in this field."
30 years of service
"I've been at MGHfC for 30 years, starting as an intern! My major focus has obviously been in primary care, but I also worked at a hospitalist before we had hospitalists and moonlighted as an attending physician in the Emergency Department for seven years. All of these experiences have been special, but I think perhaps the most important breakthrough has been helping to start the Coordinated Care Clinic here at MGHfC. Having a clinic to help some of the most fragile of our patients and the time to do it has been incredibly important and special to me.
Brian Skotko, MD, MPP
10 years of service
"One of my personal milestones is the creation of the Down Syndrome Clinic to You (DSC2U), the first-ever online curated information system at Mass General and, as far as we know, in the nation. I was inspired to create this system because 95% of patients who have Down syndrome in the U.S don't have access to a clinic like ours at Mass General."
20 years of service
"During my time at MGHfC, I have grown into an established physician-scientist with a focus on neuroendocrine and bone outcomes in conditions that span the weight spectrum. Several of my clinical trials have resulted in data that have been paradigm shifting in the management of low bone density in teenage girls and young women with functional hypothalamic amenorrhea."
"I've also had the good fortune to mentor and train a remarkable group of pediatric endocrine fellows and young faculty and, in turn, I'vbe learned a tremendous amount from those I have mentored. This was, and remains, my way of 'giving back' for the wonderful mentoring I received from stalwarts in the field."
"I've learned to challenge myself, to accept nominations to Board positions in the Pediatric Endocrine Society and to eventually take on the role of President Elect of this society. Perhaps my greatest accomplishment during the past 20 years has been to simultaneously raise my son and see him grow into a good, confident and successful young man and to nurture the remarkable artistic talent of my spouse, who is also a physician."
About Ether Day
- This year, Ether Day was celebrated on Oct. 11, 2019 in a lively ceremony under the Bulfinch tents. The Ether Day Dancers rocked and rolled to hit songs of each year of service recognized.
- In total, 3,758 employees received pins ranging from five to 55 years of service.
- Ether Day started on Oct. 16, 1846, when William T. G. Morton, a Boston dentist, demonstrated the use of ether during surgery in what is now known as the Ether Dome at Massachusetts General Hospital. This ended the unimaginable pain and dread that often accompanied going under the surgeon's knife. Morton administered the ether to patient Gilbert Abbot, who had a vascular tumor on his neck. After Abbot fell asleep, John Collins Warren, MD, a prominent surgeon at the time, removed the tumor. Abbot reported no pain when he woke up.
- Ether Day has since become a day to recognize staff of all role groups for their years of service and dedication to patients, families and the hospital's overall mission. Staff receive pins with stars denoting every five years of service. Staff who celebrate 20 years or more are treated to a dinner hosted by Peter L. Slavin, MD, president of Massachusetts General Hospital.