Department Blog

Amal Mattu, MD, is the editor-in-chief of the second edition of Electrocardiography in Emergency, Acute, and Critical Care. His co-editors are Jeffrey A. Tabas, MD, of San Francisco General Hospital, and William J. Brady, MD, at the University of Virginia School of Medicine. Their 18-chapter book was published by the American College of Emergency Physicians in January. The three editors wrote the opening chapter, “The ECG and Clinical Decision-Making in the Emergency Department.” Two other chapters were contributed by emergency medicine faculty members: Semhar Tewelde, MD, and Maite Anna Huis in’t Veld, MD, wrote “ACS Mimics Part I: Non-ACS Causes of ST-Segment Elevation” and Michael Bond, MD, and Leen Alblaihed, MBBS, contributed “Pericarditis, Myocarditis, and Pericardial Effusions.” The book was copyedited by Linda Kesselring, MS, ELS, the technical editor/writer in the Department of Emergency Medicine.

Three professors in the Department of Emergency Medicine have been promoted to vice chairmanship positions, joining Brian Browne, MD, Professor and Chairman, in the department’s administrative leadership:

Amal Mattu, MD, is the new Vice Chair of Academic Affairs, focusing on faculty development and promotions. His duties include the mentoring of faculty members in their academic pursuits; enhancing the department’s education programs for fellows, residents, and medical students; and participating in the recruitment of new faculty members. Dr. Mattu has been the Vice Chair of the department since 2011.

As Vice Chair of Clinical and Administrative Affairs, Michael Winters, MD, MBA, is responsible for the business and administrative aspects of the department. He will negotiate contracts for clinical services, participate in the recruitment of new emergency care providers, and oversee compliance with billing practices. With this appointment, Dr. Winters leaves his position as the clinical director of UMMC’s adult emergency department, a post he held for the past 10 years. The ED’s new clinical director is Angela Smedley, MD, Assistant Professor.

As Vice Chair of Patient Safety and Quality Assurance, Brent King, MD, will develop innovative programs to educate clinical personnel about best practices, identify areas of potential risk and implement mitigation strategies to address them, and ensure the department’s compliance with practice regulations.

Posted 2/20/2019 by Linda Kesselring

Maryland ACEP Educational Conference, March 14

Three faculty members from the Department of Emergency Medicine will present lectures at the Annual Educational Conference of the Maryland chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians, to be held at the BWI Airport Marriott on March 14. Amal Mattu, MD, will present “Emergency Cardiology Literature Update: The Articles You’ve Got to Know!” Jason Adler, MD, will present “A Clinical Approach to Critical Care Coding ? Rapid Fire Pearls and Pitfalls You’ve Got to Know.” Sarah Dubbs, MD, will present “Next Gen Onc: Coming to an ED Near You!” Michael Bond, MD, served on the Education Planning Committee that designed the conference program. Registration information is available at

Michael Bond, MD, along with the program directors of eight other emergency medicine residencies, co-authored the article titled “Standardized Video Interviews Do Not Correlate to United States Medical Licensing Examination Step 1 and Step 2 Scores.” This illuminating article about the applicant-review process was published in the January issue of Western Journal of Emergency Medicine.

Laura J. Bontempo, MD, MEd, is a co-editor of the February issue of Emergency Medicine Clinics of North America, along with Jan Shoenberger, MD, from the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. The topic of the issue is ear, nose, and throat emergencies. She and Sara Manning, MD, co-authored the article titled “Tracheostomy Emergencies.” Amal Mattu, MD, continues as the consulting editor for this journal and, in that capacity, wrote the foreword for this issue.

Posted 1/17/2019 by Linda Kesselring

Trauma-Informed Care for Violently Injured Patients

Kyle R. Fischer, MD, MPH, Director of UMMC's Public Policy Fellowship, is the lead author of the review article titled “Trauma-Informed Care for Violently Injured Patients in the Emergency Department,” which has been accepted for publication by Annals of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Fischer and his co-authors from the University of Colorado, Drexel University, the University of Pennsylvania, Einstein Medical Center, Boston University, and the Medical College of Wisconsin are members of the National Network of Hospital-Based Violence Intervention Programs.

Posted 1/10/2019 by Linda Kesselring

Dr. Dezman Quoted in AP Story on Second Chance App

Zachary Dezman, MD, MS, MS, was contacted by the Associated Press to comment on Second Chance, an app developed at the University of Washington and now being tested for its ability to detect the shallow breathing that suggests opioid overdose. Installed on a smartphone, the software uses the microphone and speaker to send out inaudible sound waves and then record how they bounce back. Analysis of the signals indicates the slowing or cessation of breathing. In its current stage of development, the app requires a bystander to interpret the alarm and summon help for an opioid user in trouble. The developers are working on technology that would call for help independently when signs of overdose are detected.

The article, including Dr. Dezman's perspective, can be read here:

The app and its preliminary test results are described in the January issue of Science Translational Medicine.

Posted 12/21/2018 by Linda Kesselring

UMMC's Opioid Task Forces Recognized by Mayor

At a press conference held at Baltimore’s City Hall on December 19, Mayor Catherine Pugh announced that the University of Maryland Medical Center’s midtown and downtown campuses have been awarded “Level 1” status, the highest certification in the city’s efforts toward addressing the opioid epidemic. The city’s Levels of Care initiative assesses hospitals’ ability to provide treatment to patients who screen positive for a substance use disorder, distribute naloxone to patients, and ensure physicians are prescribing opioids judiciously. Of the 11 hospitals assessed, UMMC and Midtown were the only two in the top tier of readiness and resources to offer comprehensive and timely treatment to ED patients struggling with opioid addiction."

Zachary D.W. Dezman, MD, MS, MS, chair of Midtown’s Opioid Task Force, noted that “a staggering 70% of patients who come to our EDs for care are struggling with addiction, behavioral health problems, or both. About one in every 50 patients treated at Midtown's ED is suffering from an overdose of some kind. We offer patients resources to put them on a path toward healing, including dispensing naloxone to those at high risk for overdose and providing peer recovery support services. Those peers can link patients with substance abuse problems to inpatient treatment programs within hours.”

UMMC’s Opioid Task Force is co-chaired by Christopher Welsh, MD, and R. Gentry Wilkerson, MD. Attendees at the Wednesday morning press conference included Reginald Brown, MD, ED Director, Bon Secours; Michael Jablonover, MD, MBA, CMO and Senior Vice President of UMMC; Mary Beth Haller, interim Baltimore Health Commissioner; and Alison Brown, MPH, President of UMMC’s Midtown Campus.

Posted 11/21/2018 by Linda Kesselring

ED Physicians Present Lectures at Paramedic Refresher Course

Jenny Guyther, MD, and Danya Khoujah, MBBS, were faculty members for the National Continued Competency Program Paramedic Refresher course, held at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, during the week of October 30. Dr. Guyther’s lectures were titled “What a Pain! A Closer Look at Head and Neck Trauma” and “Challenging the Status Quo: Where the EMS Literature is Taking Us.” Dr. Khoujah presented three lectures: “Stroke: Beyond the Basics,” “Seizures,” and “Pearls and Pitfalls of Managing Psychiatric Emergency.” The course was sponsored by UMBC’s Department of Emergency Health Services.

Posted 11/19/2018 by Linda Kesselring

Does POC US Improve Outcomes in Shock Patients?

Laura Diegelmann, MD, RDMS, was a site coordinator for an international study on the use of ultrasound in the assessment of nontrauma patients with hypotension without an obvious cause. The study involved patients from three medical centers in North America and three in South Africa. Point-of-care ultrasound conveyed no demonstrable outcome benefit to patients with undifferentiated shock. The results of this study were published as the article titled “Does Point-of-Care Ultrasonography Improve Clinical Outcomes in Emergency Department Patients with Undifferentiated Hypotension? An International Randomized Controlled Trial from the Shoc-ED Investigators” in the October issue of Annals of Emergency Medicine.