Aaron Kesselheim, MD, JD, MPH

by Rachad Davis

February 10, 2017

Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Faculty Member, Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics, Department of Medicine,
Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Aaron Kesselheim MD JD MPH is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a faculty member in the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics in the Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). His work addresses a number of topics at the intersection of law, medicine, and ethics, including FDA regulatory policies and the approval process for prescription drugs and medical devices, and the costs, availability, and evidence-based use of prescription drugs. He graduated from Harvard College and received his postgraduate training at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Law School, and most recently at the Harvard School of Public Health. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, and serves as a primary care physician at the Phyllis Jen Center for Primary Care at BWH. Within the Division, Aaron created and leads the Program On Regulation, Therapeutics, And Law (PORTAL), an interdisciplinary research core focusing on intersections among prescription drugs and medical devices, patient health outcomes, and regulatory practices and the law. Currently, PORTAL has two full-time faculty, 5 post-docs, and numerous affiliated faculty and students, and is funded from government grants and contracts, private foundations including the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, Engelberg Foundation, and Commonwealth Fund, and through the Harvard Medical School Program in Therapeutic Science. He is a member of the New York State Bar and is a Patent Attorney.

Aaron has received wide recognition for his work. He has testified before Congress on pharmaceutical policy, medical device regulation, generic drugs, and modernizing clinical trials, and served as a consultant for the NIH, FDA, National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine, USPTO, and numerous state government offices. In 2010, he received the prestigious Alice S. Hersh New Investigator Award from AcademyHealth, the leading professional organization for health services/policy research. The Hersh award is given annually to an outstanding health services researcher under age 40 in the US. In 2013, Aaron was named a Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics by the Greenwall Foundation, which supports innovative empirical research in bioethics. In 2016, he was presented with the Research Leadership Award from Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical School’s young mentor award.

Aaron also serves as a faculty supervisor for the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School, a faculty member of the Harvard Center for Bioethics, and a Research Associate in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. In 2014-2015 and again in 2016-2017, he has served as Visiting Associate Professor of Law at Yale Law School, where he teaches Food and Drug Administration Law. In 2012, he was named to the Perspectives Advisory Board of the New England Journal of Medicine. He is currently the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics.