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Max Harry Weil, MD, PhD

Photo of Dr Max Harry WeilConsidered one of the fathers of critical care medicine, Dr. Max Harry Weil has helped save the lives and ease the suffering of critically ill patients worldwide. By bringing the science of the physiology lab to the patient's bedside, he introduced practices that have become the standard for critical care.

Founding president of the Society of Critical Care Medicine, Dr. Weil, since 1975, has been president of the Institute of Critical Care Medicine in Palm Springs, California, an international center, for clinical education and research. He served as Chairman of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief at the University of Health Sciences in Chicago, Illinois from 1981-1992. He currently holds academic appointments at the University of Southern California and Northwestern University.

The concept that dangerously ill patients have a better chance at recovery under the care of specially trained physicians and nurses in emergency and intensive care units did not emerge until the early 1960s. Dr. Weil is credited with pioneering the development of the first modern intensive care unit. Within 10 years, almost every hospital in the United States had such facilities. Dr. Weil also has helped train many of the top physicians in critical care medicine.

Recognized as a leader in cardiopulmonary resuscitation, Dr. Weil and his collaborators performed much of the original research on sepsis and septic shock and pioneered the concept of fluid challenge to resuscitate patients suffering from circulatory shock He and his team of loyal co-workers developed the clinical use of metabolic markers for states of shock and was one of the first to apply computer technology to data analysis and decision making in the clinical care of shock patients.

A State University of New York Downstate graduate, Class of 1952, Dr. Weil continued his graduate training at the University of Minnesota, where he received his Ph.D. After completing research fellowships at the University of Minnesota, National Heart Institute, and The Mayo Clinic, he was named chief of cardiology at the City of Hope Medical Center in California. He joined the faculty of the University of Southern California (USC) School of Medicine, where he was director of the Shock Research Clinic and later served as chairman of the Division of Critical Care Medicine. As professor of physiology and biophysics at the University of Health Sciences, Chicago Medical School, he served as chair of medicine, chief of cardiology, and chief of critical care medicine. In 2004 he received an Sc.D. (Hon) from the State University of News York, Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY.

A frequent speaker at international symposia, Dr. Weil is the coauthor of several medical texts and more than 1,100 other publications. His many honors include recognition for lifetime achievement by the American Heart Association and the Society of Critical Care, as well as an award for contributions to emergency medicine from the American Red Cross for Israel.