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Hall of Fame


Jeffrey Cooper, PhD 

Dr. Jeffrey Cooper has been inducted into the Clinical Engineering Hall of fame in recognition of his leadership in Patient Safety, Medical Simulation, and CE in the US and around the world.

  • Born in 1946
  • 1972, PhD in Chemical Engineering, University of Missouri-Columbia
  • 1972 – Present: Professor of Anesthesia, Harvard Medical School
  • 1972 – Present: Senior Biomedical Engineer, Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care & Pain Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital
  • 1995 -2009: Director, Biomedical Engineering at Partners Healthcare System
  • 1994 – Present: Executive Director, Center for Medical Simulation, Boston, MA

Dr. Cooper is one of the world’s pioneers in patient safety, having led the earliest studies of medical error beginning in the mid-1970s. Dr. Cooper also led a team that developed a prototype of the one of the world’s first microprocessor based medical devices, the Boston Anesthesia System, the principles on which modern day anesthesia workstations are founded.

He was also a lead member of the group that created the first safety-related standards for anesthesia, equivalent versions of which have since been adopted in the US and throughout the world. He is a co-founder of the Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation (APSF), serving continuously on its Executive Committee and for 13 years as Chairman of it Committee on Scientific Evaluation. In 2015, he is still APSF Executive Vice President. He serves on the Board of Governors of the National Patient Safety Foundation and founded its Research Program, which he chaired for seven years.

During his tenure as Director of Biomedical Engineering for Partners Healthcare System, he built one of the leading healthcare system organizations managing and innovating in patient care support technologies.

In 1993, Dr. Cooper founded the Center for Medical Simulation, which he led until 2015.  CMS is focused  on patient safety, using simulation to train healthcare providers to manage critical events and practice good teamwork. Its Institute for Medical Simulation trains simulation educators from around the world to use simulation effectively in their educational and patient safety programs. The research is generally about how best to use simulation for these purposes and to study how providers and change behaviors to minimize the risks of adverse outcomes.

Dr. Cooper was awarded many honors for his work in patient safety, including:

  • 2003 John M. Eisenberg Award for Lifetime Achievement in Patient Safety from the National Quality Forum and the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
  • 2004 Marv Shepherd Patient Safety Award from ACCE
  • In 2009, the Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care & Pain Medicine of MGH established the Jeffrey B. Cooper Patient Safety award in his honor
  • 2013 American Society of Anesthesiologists Distinguished Service Award, its highest honor and he the first time it was awarded to a non-physician
  • 2015 J.S. Gravenstein Award, Society for Technology in Anesthesia


4 members of the Massachusetts General Hospital, Department of Anesthesia, Anesthesia Bioengineering Unit
From Left to Right, Josh Tolkoff, Jeffrey Cooper, Ronald Newbower, Edwin Trautman, 1978  

4 members of the Massachusetts General Hospital, Department of Anesthesia, Anesthesia Bioengineering Unit.
From Left to Right: Josh Tolkoff, Jeffrey Cooper, Ronald Newbower, Edwin Trautman, 1978.


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