A Welcome Message from the Chair, Jose C. Florez, MD, PhD

In the Department of Medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital, we fully embrace Mass General Brigham’s four-pronged mission of delivering outstanding and compassionate clinical care, advancing the frontiers of biomedical knowledge, training the next generation of leaders in academic medicine, and serving our local and global communities. Patient care, research, education, and community service represent the four fundamental pillars that sustain our enterprise and motivate our daily endeavors.

Jose C. Florez, MD, PhD
Jose C. Florez, MD, PhD
Photo by Juliana Sohn

To reflect this reality, the Department’s governance is established around Councils that are responsible for each component of our mission. Our ten clinical Divisions cover the various medical subspecialties, and our seven research Units support specific areas of investigation, such as analytical and translational genetics, translational epidemiology, disparities research, biostatistics, and computer science. Separate committees for diversity, equity, and inclusion and for faculty advancement, composed of representatives from each clinical division, ensure that departmental priorities on diversity and belonging as well as personnel development permeate every corner of our department.

Having worked as a physician-scientist in this Department since my arrival as a medical intern in 1997, I can characterize it in the following ways. Its best feature is its extraordinary people, with over 1,000 faculty and 900 trainees who can be described as top-notch clinicians and scientists who remain fundamentally committed to professional excellence. We enjoy a widely embraced team culture, which is imbued into our minds from the earliest stages of training and which creates an environment of pervasive collegiality. We have acquired a heightened consciousness for social justice, providing motivation and passion for many of the activities that are critical to our mission. The MGH trait of personal initiative and entrepreneurship facilitates the adoption of innovative and creative solutions. Our remarkable size ensures widespread expertise, leadership opportunities and depth to address emerging challenges. Our specific weight within the enterprise gives us the opportunity to contribute to ongoing change in a healthy manner, ensure that new initiatives are permeated with the values we hold dear, and influence timing and priorities constructively. Finally, our keen awareness that we might serve as a role model for others, both within Mass General Brigham and beyond, reinforces our sense of responsibility.

Our clinical care philosophy is grounded on the premise that patients always come first, because a fellow human being who is suffering is the ultimate reason for our professional existence. Across our 100 clinical practices, our inpatient medical wards, and our intensive care units, we welcome everyone, and apply evidence-based knowledge, state-of-the-art technology, multidisciplinary expertise, and humanistic compassion to serve our patients, understand their social determinants of health, provide cures or treatments for their illness, and accompany them in their life journey.

We are committed to cutting-edge research because it drives innovation, secures return on investment, and draws and retains amazing talent. From fundamental biological discovery to human physiological research to clinical translation and implementation science at the Mongan Institute, we cover the entire spectrum of biomedical investigation. With over $1B of research funding per year, the MGH receives the highest amount of research funding among free-standing U.S. hospitals. The Department of Medicine’s annual research budget totals $186M, with 39% provided by NIH grants and 30% from industry and private sponsors.

The crown jewel of our education efforts is our residency program, the largest of our 19 training programs. Graduates of our residency have gone on to positions of leadership across the nation, making a significant impact in every area of medicine. From Nobel laureates to academic department chairs or division chiefs, to members of the National Academy of Medicine, to visionary executives in the pharmaceutical industry or in biotech, the talented pool of accomplished medical graduates we continue to attract have found in MGH the springboard from which to pursue their inspiring dreams. Our residency program continues to match the best, attracts a robust cadre of physician-scientists, boasts gender equity, and has made tangible gains in diversity, equity, and inclusion.

We care deeply for our communities – not only locally but across the globe. Our health care centers deliver the same excellent care to our surrounding Boston neighborhoods of Chelsea, Revere, the North End, Charlestown and Everett. We participate in community events and engage community organizations in our research activities. In collaboration with the Indian Health Service we have a presence in the Rosebud/Pine Ridge Sioux reservation in South Dakota, and our Global Health Program takes clinicians and researchers to Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Serving in this Department of Medicine is a constant source of genuine joy. The passion, ethic, commitment, intellect, drive and expertise of my colleagues ensure that our impact is both far-reaching and long-lasting. The continuity of this spirit down many generations provides a clear sense of purpose; on behalf of our incredible team, I invite you to explore our programs, services, research, and educational opportunities, and if so called, to contribute to our legacy.

Jose C. Florez, MD, PhD
Physician-in-Chief and Chair
Department of Medicine