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S. Louis Bridges, Jr., MD, PhD, Named Physician-in-Chief and Chair of Rheumatology at Hospital for Special Surgery

Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) today announced the appointment of S. Louis Bridges, Jr., MD, PhD, as the new Physician-in-Chief and Chair of the Division of Rheumatology, effective September 1, 2020. Dr. Bridges succeeds Mary K. Crow, MD, who will become Physician-In-Chief Emeritus.

“Dr. Bridges is a distinguished and well-respected physician-scientist whose work has led to great improvements in patient care,” said Bryan Kelly, MD, Surgeon-in-Chief and Medical Director at HSS. “His experience and expertise will only enhance our commitment to delivering high-quality and high-value healthcare.”

Dr. Bridges, a rheumatologist, is the director of the Division of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), where he serves as the Anna Lois Waters Endowed Chair of the Division of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology. He is also the Director of UAB’s Comprehensive Arthritis, Musculoskeletal, Bone, and Autoimmunity Center.

He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame, his medical degree from Louisiana State University School of Medicine and his PhD degree in microbiology from UAB. He completed his residency and fellowship at the University of Texas Medical Branch in internal medicine, where he also served as Chief Medical Resident. He has been continuously funded by National Institutes of Health grants and is focused largely on rheumatoid arthritis susceptibility and treatment response. Dr. Bridges has authored more than 140 manuscripts and 20 book chapters and has served as editor of three editions of the text Vasculitis, published by Oxford University Press. In January 2020, Dr. Bridges was appointed president of the Rheumatology Research Foundation and member of the Executive Committee of the American College of Rheumatology.

Additionally, he is a former co-editor of Arthritis & Rheumatology and former chair of the NIH Arthritis, Musculoskeletal, and Skin Study Section. In addition to membership on several American College of Rheumatology committees, he previously served as chair of the ACR Committee on Research and as a member of the Rheumatology Research Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Council.

“I am excited and humbled by the privilege of leading the renowned HSS Department of Medicine to further advance the science and practice of Rheumatology and related specialties,” said Dr. Bridges. “Together with esteemed colleagues in Orthopedics, there is no greater opportunity to impact musculoskeletal health worldwide.”

Dr. Crow will remain at HSS continuing her work as the Benjamin M. Rosen Chair in Immunology and Inflammation Research and the Joseph P. Routh Professor of Rheumatic Diseases Medicine.

“Dr. Crow is an exceptional international leader, and her dedication to improving the lives of patients with autoimmune conditions has led to incredible scientific breakthroughs,” said Dr. Kelly. “We’re looking forward to her continued success at HSS.”

“The advancement of patient care practices at HSS is demonstrated through our commitment to recruiting outstanding physician leaders in our clinical specialties, such as Dr. Bridges,” said Louis A. Shapiro, president and CEO at HSS. “Dr. Bridges has made significant contributions to the field of rheumatology. He approaches complex cases with dedication and compassion, and is an advocate for populations disproportionately affected by rheumatic diseases. We are proud to welcome him to HSS.”

About HSS

HSS is the world’s leading academic medical center focused on musculoskeletal health. At its core is Hospital for Special Surgery, nationally ranked No. 1 in orthopedics (for the 14th consecutive year), No. 2 in rheumatology by U.S. News & World Report (2023-2024), and the best pediatric orthopedic hospital in NY, NJ and CT by U.S. News & World Report “Best Children’s Hospitals” list (2023-2024). In a survey of medical professionals in more than 20 countries by Newsweek, HSS is ranked world #1 in orthopedics for a fourth consecutive year (2023). Founded in 1863, the Hospital has the lowest readmission rates in the nation for orthopedics, and among the lowest infection and complication rates. HSS was the first in New York State to receive Magnet Recognition for Excellence in Nursing Service from the American Nurses Credentialing Center five consecutive times. An affiliate of Weill Cornell Medical College, HSS has a main campus in New York City and facilities in New Jersey, Connecticut and in the Long Island and Westchester County regions of New York State, as well as in Florida. In addition to patient care, HSS leads the field in research, innovation and education. The HSS Research Institute comprises 20 laboratories and 300 staff members focused on leading the advancement of musculoskeletal health through prevention of degeneration, tissue repair and tissue regeneration. In addition, more than 200 HSS clinical investigators are working to improve patient outcomes through better ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat orthopedic, rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. The HSS Innovation Institute works to realize the potential of new drugs, therapeutics and devices. The HSS Education Institute is a trusted leader in advancing musculoskeletal knowledge and research for physicians, nurses, allied health professionals, academic trainees, and consumers in more than 165 countries. The institution is collaborating with medical centers and other organizations to advance the quality and value of musculoskeletal care and to make world-class HSS care more widely accessible nationally and internationally. www.hss.edu.