Alexander Y. Walley MD

Professor, General Internal Medicine

Courtesy Staff Privileges, Medicine

801 Massachusetts Ave | (617) 414-6975
Alexander Walley

General Internal Medicine


Clinical Addiction Research and Education Unit

Evans Center for Interdisciplinary Biomedical Research


Dr Walley is Professor of Medicine and an addiction expert at Boston Medical Center and Chobanian and Avedisian School of Medicine focused on the medical complications of substance use, specifically HIV and overdose. Dr Walley has conducted multiple studies related to the opioid crisis and the integration of addiction specialty care and general medical care. He has served as PI on a CDC-SAMHSA-Epi-AID investigation of the surge in fentanyl-related overdose, a CDC-funded study of the Massachusetts community naloxone program which demonstrated community-level reductions in overdose death rates, and a SAMHSA-funded program that integrated addiction treatment into the clinical care of people with/at risk for HIV. He is principal investigator for CDC and NIH funded studies of community overdose interventions. For the NIH-funded HEALing Communities Study - Massachusetts, he served as the Care Continuum Core Director 2019-2022. He has worked as Co-I with addiction, overdose, and HIV expertise on NIDA and NIAAA-funded clinical trials and cohort studies.

Dr. Walley is a founding director of the Grayken Addiction Medicine Fellowship. From 2011 to 2022, 20 addiction specialists graduated, 6 of whom serve as directors for addiction medicine fellowships, 13 are faculty at medical schools, 9 at Boston University School of Medicine. He was a founding board member and treasurer of the Addiction Medicine Fellowship Director’s Association 2016-2019 and American College of Academic Addiction Medicine (ACAAM) starting in 2019. He is currently the president-elect for ACAAM. With his mentor, Dr. Jeffrey Samet, he is multi-PI on the NIDA-funded R25 Clinical Addiction Research and Education Program, which produces the Chief Resident and Fellow Immersion Training programs.

Dr. Walley provides primary care and addiction medicine consultations in the HIV primary care clinic at Chobanian and Avedisian School of Medicine/BMC. He founded BMC’s inpatient Addiction Consult Service in 2015 and the Faster Paths low-barrier access substance use clinic in 2016. He previously was a site medical director for opioid treatment programs in Boston from 2007 to 2016. He serves as the medical director for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s Bureau of Substance Addiction Services and the Overdose Prevention Program. Since 2007, the MDPH program has trained and equipped over 100,000 people in Massachusetts’s communities with naloxone rescue kits, including people at-risk for overdose and their social networks.


Medicine-Internal, MD, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Epidemiology, MSc, Boston University School of Public Health

History and Literature, AB, Harvard College


Published on 3/22/2024

Christine PJ, Lodi S, Hsu HE, Bovell-Ammon B, Yan S, Bernson D, Novo P, Lee JD, Rotrosen J, Liebschutz J, Walley AY, Larochelle MR. Target trial emulation for comparative effectiveness research with observational data: Promise and challenges for studying medications for opioid use disorder. Addiction. 2024 Mar 22. PMID: 38519819.

Published on 3/19/2024

Schoenberger SF, Cummins ER, Carroll JJ, Yan S, Lambert A, Bagley SM, Xuan Z, Green TC, Cook F, Yule AM, Walley AY, Formica SW. "Wanna cry this out real quick?": an examination of secondary traumatic stress risk and resilience among post-overdose outreach staff in Massachusetts. Harm Reduct J. 2024 Mar 19; 21(1):66. PMID: 38504244.

Published on 3/18/2024

Fielman S, McNeely J, Fitzpatrick A, Kerensky T, Tomanovich M, Walley AY, Kosakowski S, King C, Appleton N, Weinstein ZM. A Clinical Guide to Support the Implementation of Addiction Consult Services and the Value of Teaching and Technical Assistance. J Addict Med. 2024 Mar 18. PMID: 38498619.

Published on 3/8/2024

Chang YG, McMahan VM, Marti XL, Pope E, Wolfe S, Majeski A, Reed G, Walley AY, Coffin PO. Perception and Correlates of Opioid Overdose Risk Among Overdose Survivors Who Use Nonprescribed Opioids in San Francisco and Boston. Subst Use Addctn J. 2024 Mar 08; 29767342241237202. PMID: 38456483.

Published on 3/4/2024

Bovell-Ammon BJ, Yan S, Dunn D, Evans EA, Friedmann PD, Walley AY, LaRochelle MR. Prison Buprenorphine Implementation and Postrelease Opioid Use Disorder Outcomes. JAMA Netw Open. 2024 Mar 04; 7(3):e242732. PMID: 38497959.

Published on 1/4/2024

Beaugard CA, Formica SW, Cummins ER, Bagley SM, Beletsky L, Green TC, Murray SP, Yan S, Xuan Z, Walley AY, Carroll JJ. Privacy and confidentiality in Massachusetts' post-overdose outreach programs: Mixed methods analysis of outreach staff surveys and interviews. Int J Drug Policy. 2024 Feb; 124:104310. PMID: 38181671.

Published on 12/1/2023

Canfield J, Truong V, Bereznicka A, Bridden C, Liebschutz J, Alford DP, Saitz R, Samet JH, Walley AY, Lunze K. Evaluation of a student clinical research education program in addiction medicine. Ann Med. 2023 Dec; 55(1):361-370. PMID: 36629696.

Published on 11/1/2023

Stein MD, Godersky ME, Kim TW, Walley AY, Heeren TC, Winter MR, Magane KM, Saitz R. Self-medication of pain and discomfort with alcohol and other substances by people with HIV infection and substance use disorder: preliminary findings from a secondary analysis. AIDS Care. 2024 Mar; 36(3):414-424. PMID: 37909062.

Published on 10/20/2023

Harris MTH, Laks J, Hurstak E, Jain JP, Lambert AM, Maschke AD, Bagley SM, Farley J, Coffin PO, McMahan VM, Barrett C, Walley AY, Gunn CM. "If you're strung out and female, they will take advantage of you": A qualitative study exploring drug use and substance use service experiences among women in Boston and San Francisco. J Subst Use Addict Treat. 2024 Feb; 157:209190. PMID: 37866442.

Published on 9/29/2023

McCann NC, McMahan VM, Smith R, Majeski A, Johns SL, Kosakowski S, Wolfe S, Brennan S, Robinson M, Coffin PO, Walley AY. Feasibility and acceptability of a timeline follow-back method to assess opioid use, non-fatal overdose, and substance use disorder treatment. Addict Behav. 2024 Jan; 148:107873. PMID: 37801804.

View full list of 222 publications.