Edward Bernstein, MD

Professor, Emergency Medicine

Edward Bernstein


Expertise and interests include:

1)Research to improve the care of at risk and dependent alcohol and drug users in the medical setting.
2)Role of community health workers/health promotion advocates in the medical setting.
3)Reducing STI among cocaine and heroin users.
4)The role of motivational interviewing to improve the patient physician encounters/relations.

For the past twenty-five years Dr. Bernstein has pioneered methods to integrate public health into emergency medicine practice, developed and disseminated systems of emergency care that enhance health communications between providers and patients, and extensively tested a comprehensive model for intervention in which physician extenders help steer patients with preventable conditions to appropriate services. Dr. Bernstein was the founder (1987) of the Emergency Medicine Residency at the University of New Mexico, which incorporated problem based learning, and public health into the residency training. In 1996 he co- edited the textbook, “Case Studies in Emergency Medicine and the Health of the Public.”

Over the past seventeen years, Dr. Bernstein has developed a body of NIH sponsored research to test the application of motivational interviewing to improving health communications and outcomes to reduce sexual risk behavior among ED patients with cocaine and heroin abuse, reduce adolescent alcohol and marijuana use and, in a 14 site Academic ED study, reduce at risk and dependent alcohol use. He also tested the Project ASSERT model, the nation’s first SBIRT program, in a trial of a brief motivational intervention delivered by peers to cocaine and heroin users. Together with Dr. Judith Bernstein, he leads the Boston University School of Public Health’s BNI-ART Institute which provides technical support and training in motivational interviewing, the peer model and system change and research design for providers in a variety of medical settings. Organizations served by the Institute include: RWJ Join Together, the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, SAMHSA , the Massachusetts DPH Health’s Bureau of Substance Abuse Services, NYC Department of Mental Health and Hygiene, Howard University Medical College’s Residency SBIRT Program, Yale New Haven Emergency Department’s Project ASSERT, and Partners In Health PACT program.

Other Positions

  • Professor, Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health
  • Active Staff Privileges, Emergency Medicine, Boston Medical Center


  • Stanford University, MD
  • Columbia College, BA


  • Published on 2/8/2018

    Krieger MS, Yedinak JL, Buxton JA, Lysyshyn M, Bernstein E, Rich JD, Green TC, Hadland SE, Marshall BDL. High willingness to use rapid fentanyl test strips among young adults who use drugs. Harm Reduct J. 2018 Feb 08; 15(1):7. PMID: 29422052.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 4/1/2017

    Bernstein J, Dorfman D, Lunstead J, Topp D, Mamata H, Jaffer S, Bernstein E. Reaching Adolescents for Prevention: The Role of Pediatric Emergency Department Health Promotion Advocates. Pediatr Emerg Care. 2017 Apr; 33(4):223-229. PMID: 26999582.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/18/2016

    Drainoni ML, Koppelman EA, Feldman JA, Walley AY, Mitchell PM, Ellison J, Bernstein E. Why is it so hard to implement change? A qualitative examination of barriers and facilitators to distribution of naloxone for overdose prevention in a safety net environment. BMC Res Notes. 2016 Oct 18; 9(1):465. PMID: 27756427.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/22/2016

    Ellison J, Walley AY, Feldman JA, Bernstein E, Mitchell PM, Koppelman EA, Drainoni ML. Identifying Patients for Overdose Prevention With ICD-9 Classification in the Emergency Department, Massachusetts, 2013-2014. Public Health Rep. 2016 Sep; 131(5):671-675. PMID: 28123207.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 6/21/2016

    Dworkis DA, Peak DA, Ahn J, Joseph TA, Bernstein E, Nadel ES. Reaching Out of the Box: Effective Emergency Care Requires Looking Outside the Emergency Department. West J Emerg Med. 2016 Jul; 17(4):484-6. PMID: 27429705.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 6/21/2016

    Anderson ES, Lippert S, Newberry J, Bernstein E, Alter HJ, Wang NE. Addressing Social Determinants of Health from the Emergency Department through Social Emergency Medicine. West J Emerg Med. 2016 Jul; 17(4):487-9. PMID: 27429706.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 3/22/2016

    Samuels EA, Dwyer K, Mello MJ, Baird J, Kellogg AR, Bernstein E. Emergency Department-based Opioid Harm Reduction: Moving Physicians From Willing to Doing. Acad Emerg Med. 2016 Apr; 23(4):455-65. PMID: 26816030.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 1/28/2016

    Bernstein J, Bernstein E, Hudson D, Belanoff C, Cabral HJ, Cherpitel CJ, Bond J, Ye Y, Woolard R, Villalobos S, Ramos R. Differences by gender at twelve months in a brief intervention trial among Mexican-origin young adults in the emergency department. J Ethn Subst Abuse. 2017 Jan-Mar; 16(1):91-108. PMID: 26821181.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/4/2015

    Cherpitel CJ, Ye Y, Bond J, Woolard R, Villalobos S, Bernstein J, Bernstein E, Ramos R. Brief Intervention in the Emergency Department Among Mexican-Origin Young Adults at the US-Mexico Border: Outcomes of a Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial Using Promotores. Alcohol Alcohol. 2016 Mar; 51(2):154-63. PMID: 26243733.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 7/23/2015

    Boudreaux ED, Haskins B, Harralson T, Bernstein E. The remote brief intervention and referral to treatment model: Development, functionality, acceptability, and feasibility. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015 Oct 1; 155:236-42. PMID: 26297297.

    Read at: PubMed

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