Edward Bernstein, MD

Professor, Community Health Sciences

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, Emergency Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine


  • Stanford University, MD
  • Columbia College, BA


  • Published on 11/1/2019

    Anderson E, Bernstein E, Xuan Z, Alter HJ. Inventing Social Emergency Medicine: Summary of Common and Critical Research Themes Using a Modified Haddon Matrix. Ann Emerg Med. 2019 11; 74(5S):S74-S77. PMID: 31655685.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 6/17/2019

    Goldman JE, Krieger MS, Buxton JA, Lysyshyn M, Sherman SG, Green TC, Bernstein E, Hadland SE, Marshall BDL. Suspected involvement of fentanyl in prior overdoses and engagement in harm reduction practices among young adults who use drugs. Subst Abus. 2019; 40(4):519-526. PMID: 31206354.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 2/13/2019

    Ouchi K, George N, Schuur JD, Aaronson EL, Lindvall C, Bernstein E, Sudore RL, Schonberg MA, Block SD, Tulsky JA. Goals-of-Care Conversations for Older Adults With Serious Illness in the Emergency Department: Challenges and Opportunities. Ann Emerg Med. 2019 08; 74(2):276-284. PMID: 30770207.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/12/2018

    Ouchi K, George N, Revette AC, Hasdianda MA, Fellion L, Reust A, Powell LH, Sudore R, Schuur JD, Schonberg MA, Bernstein E, Tulsky JA, Block SD. Empower Seriously Ill Older Adults to Formulate Their Goals for Medical Care in the Emergency Department. J Palliat Med. 2019 03; 22(3):267-273. PMID: 30418094.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/18/2018

    Krieger MS, Goedel WC, Buxton JA, Lysyshyn M, Bernstein E, Sherman SG, Rich JD, Hadland SE, Green TC, Marshall BDL. Use of rapid fentanyl test strips among young adults who use drugs. Int J Drug Policy. 2018 11; 61:52-58. PMID: 30344005.

    Read at: PubMed
  • 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 02 08; 15(1):7. PMID: 29422052.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 2/2/2018

    Ramos R, Cherpitel CJ, Alvarez J, Beltran O, Woolard R, Villalobos S, Bernstein J, Bernstein E. Preparing Mexican-Origin Community Health Advocates (Promotores) to Conduct SBIRT for Problem Drinking in the Emergency Room. Pedagogy Health Promot. 2018 Dec; 4(4):247-253. PMID: 30923744.

    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

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