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Massachusetts Eye and Ear
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January 14, 2019Press Release

Mass. Eye and Ear appoints Chief Medical Officer, Chief of Anesthesia

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Mass. Eye and Ear Communications

Following a nationwide search, Mass. Eye and Ear named Aalok Agarwala, MD, MBA, as Chief Medical Officer, and Kathrin Bourdeu, MD, PhD, as Chief of Anesthesia

Boston, Mass. — Massachusetts Eye and Ear is pleased to announce new leadership, having recently named Aalok Agarwala, MD, MBA, as Chief Medical Officer (effective April 1, 2019) and Kathrin Bourdeu, MD, PhD, as Chief of Anesthesia (effective January 1, 2019), following a nationwide searches for both positions. Drs. Agarwala and Bourdeu will serve as key members of the Mass. Eye and Ear executive team.

“We are thrilled to have these two physicians at the helm of our world-renowned medical and surgical programs,” said John Fernandez, President of Mass. Eye and Ear. “We know that both Dr. Agarwala and Dr. Bourdeu are among the very best in their fields, and we look forward to their leadership in some of the most vital areas of our mission.” 

As Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Agarwala will lead the Medical Staff Office at Mass. Eye and Ear, as well as the hospital’s efforts in quality, patient safety and patient experience.

Dr. Agarwala joins Mass. Eye and Ear from Massachusetts General Hospital, where served as Chief of the Division of General Surgery Anesthesia and Associate Director for Quality and Safety. 

Previously, Dr. Agarwala earned his bachelor and medical degrees at the University of California at Los Angeles, as well as his MBA. He received further training in Clinical Effectiveness at the Harvard School of Public Health; the Harvard Anesthesia Leadership Executive Program at the MIT Sloan School of Management; and the 2018 Physician Leadership Development Program at the Massachusetts General Physicians Organization/Harvard Business School.

As Chief of Anesthesia, Dr. Bourdeu will lead a busy department that includes 29 anesthesiologists, 12 certified registered nurse anesthetists, 6 anesthesia technicians and 3 nurse practitioners — all supporting more than 25,000 surgeries each year across 21 operating rooms on two campuses at Mass. Eye and Ear. 

This is a promotion for Dr. Bourdeu, who has served on the medical staff at Mass. Eye and Ear since 2012 and as clinical director of the Mass. Eye and Ear 6th floor surgical center and education director for the Anesthesia Department since 2013. Since last February, she has also served as interim director of the ORs.

Dr. Bourdeu earned her medical degree and a PhD in neuro-anatomy from the University of Cologne in Germany. Her clinical training includes internships in France, Canada and the United States and residency training in anesthesia at the University of Pennsylvania. At the University of Pennsylvania, she received a Resident of the Year Award and subsequently served on the medical staff for two years, specializing in thoracic anesthesia. She is currently an instructor in Anesthesia at Harvard Medical School.

Drs. Agarwala and Bourdeu succeed Sunil Eappen, MD, who served in both roles from 2009 to 2018 and is now Chief Medical Officer at Brigham Health. 

About Massachusetts Eye and Ear

Massachusetts Eye and Ear, founded in 1824, is an international center for treatment and research and a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. A member of Partners HealthCare, Mass. Eye and Ear specializes in ophthalmology (eye care) and otolaryngology–head and neck surgery (ear, nose and throat care). Mass. Eye and Ear clinicians provide care ranging from the routine to the very complex. Also home to the world's largest community of hearing and vision researchers, Mass. Eye and Ear scientists are driven by a mission to discover the basic biology underlying conditions affecting the eyes, ears, nose, throat, head and neck and to develop new treatments and cures. In the 2018-2019 "Best Hospitals Survey,"U.S. News & World Report ranked Mass. Eye and Ear #4 in the nation for eye care and #6 for ear, nose and throat care. For more information about life-changing care and research at Mass. Eye and Ear, please visit our blog, Focus, and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.