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Emergency Medicine Faculty

  • Gail D'Onofrio

    Chair

    Professor of Emergency Medicine; Chair, Department of Emergency Medicine

    Research Interests
    • Pharmaceutical Preparations
    • Chemicals and Drugs

    Dr. D’Onofrio is Professor and the Inaugural Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine (2009) and Physician-in Chief of Emergency Services at Yale-New Haven Hospital EDs with an annual census of approximately 180,000 patients. She is boarded in emergency and addiction medicine.  Dr. D’Onofrio has extensive experience as a leader, researcher, mentor and educator, and is internationally known for her work in alcohol and other substance use disorders (SUDs) as well as for her research on gender variations in women with ischemic heart disease.   Her work (JAMA, 2015) demonstrating that ED-initiated buprenorphine increases engagement in addiction treatment for individuals with OUD, has changed clinical practice, receiving multiple science awards, including awards from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and the Clinical Research Forum.  Dr. D’Onofrio has a long track record of mentoring physician scientists in independent research careers. She is the PI of a NIDA K12 establishing the Yale Drug Use, Addiction and HIV Research Scholars (Yale-DAHRS) program, a Mentored Career Development Program with focused training in prevention and treatment of drug use, addiction, and HIV in general medical settings with scholars in Medicine, Emergency Medicine (EM), Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Pulmonary Critical Care; and she has mentored numerous EM faculty.  She has received multiple awards including Excellence in Mentoring award from the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse (AMERSA 2008), Advancing Women in Emergency Medicine award from the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM 2016) and the Academy for Women in Academic Emergency Medicine (AWAEM) Outstanding Department Award for the advancement of women (SAEM 2018). Dr. D’Onofrio is a founding Board member of the Board of Addiction Medicine recently recognized by ABMS as a Specialty, Sub-specialty.  An advocate for individuals with SUD, she is one of the architects of Connecticut Governor’s Strategic Plan to Reduce Opioid Deaths, working with multiple agencies regionally and nationally to change policies and introduce interventions to combat the opioid crisis.

  • Steven Bernstein

    Vice Chair for Academic Affairs

    Professor of Emergency Medicine and Public Health (Health Policy); Vice Chair, Academic Affairs

    Research Interests
    • Emergency Medicine
    • Technology
    • Smoking Cessation
    • Healthcare Disparities

    Dr. Bernstein develops screening and treatment interventions for tobacco users in the hospital settings, and programs to train providers in tobacco control.

    He also has strong interests in implementation science, and is the founding Director of the Yale Center for Implementation Science.

    He is currently studying the efficacy of a brief counseling intervention, nicotine replacement therapy, a telephone quitline service, and an SMS texting program in helping adult smokers in the emergency department quit. Another project is using network analysis to model patterns of adherence and abstinence in human health behavior. He is also the director of a new training program in implementation science.

    He has additional interests in teaching the principles of public health, population health, and prevention to medical students, residents, and practitioners.

    He maintains an active clinical practice in the ED at Yale-New Haven Hospital.

  • Federico Vaca

    Vice Chair for Faculty Affairs

    Professor of Emergency Medicine and in the Child Study Center; Vice Chair for Faculty Affairs; Director, Yale Developmental Neurocognitive Driving Simulation Research Center (DrivSim Lab), Emergency Medicine

    Research Interests
    • Accident Prevention
    • Adolescent
    • Behavioral Medicine
    • Emergency Medicine
    • Social Behavior
    • Motor Vehicles
    • Behavioral Research
    • Adolescent Development
    • Healthcare Disparities

    Dr. Vaca is a Professor and Vice Chair of Faculty Affairs in Yale School of Medicine's Department of Emergency Medicine and he holds a secondary appointment in the Yale Child Study Center. Dr. Vaca previously served as a Medical Fellow for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in Washington, D.C. He serves on the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies’ Committee on Operator Education and Regulation, ANB30 and its Young Driver Subcommittee. Dr. Vaca was a recent Collaborating-Visiting Scholar at the NIH-Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD), Division of Intramural Population Health Research (DIPHR), Health Behavior Branch (HBB).

    Dr. Vaca is a research and academic mentor to research fellows in the NIDA-funded K12 Mentored Clinical Scientists Development Program Award in Drug Abuse and Addiction and the Yale University Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program.

    His research has focused on adolescent development and behaviors that influence the risk of motor vehicle crash morbidity and mortality as well as health disparities in injury and alcohol use disorders. Dr. Vaca has served on several national expert panels directed by the National Institutes of Health, National Academies of Science and the Transportation Research Board, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Safe States Alliance (formerly the State Territorial Injury Prevention Directors Association), and the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Dr. Vaca has served as member of the Executive Committee and the Board of Directors for the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine. He is also a Research Scientist member of the National Hispanic Science Network.


    Dr. Vaca was recently awarded the 2013 American College of Emergency Physicians National Faculty Teaching Award.