Dr. Dale Needham received his MD from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and completed a residency in internal medicine and fellowship in critical care medicine at the University of Toronto. He obtained his PhD in Clinical Investigation from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland. Notably, prior to his medical training, Dr. Needham completed Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Accounting and practiced at a large international accounting firm with a focus on health care.
From a research perspective, Dr. Needham has made landmark contributions in studying patient survivorship within the field of critical care medicine. The vast majority of clinical research in critical care focuses on reducing short-term mortality and mechanical ventilation duration, with relatively little evaluation of survivors’ physical, cognitive and mental health impairments. These impairments are complex to study as they commonly co-occur, requiring concurrent evaluation of multiple outcomes, instead of focusing on a single impairment. Moreover, these impairments commonly persist for months or years after critical illness. Hence, survivorship studies require longitudinal study designs and evaluation of additional patient-centered outcomes (e.g., unemployment and quality of life) to more fully understand the impact of these impairments.
Dr. Needham’s research aims to achieve a deeper understanding of the short- and long-term sequelae associated with critical illness and to evaluate a wide range of novel multi-disciplinary interventions with the goal of improving survivors’ outcomes. His research is supported by numerous federally-funded grants and has resulted in many important peer-reviewed publications. Consequently, Dr. Needham is internationally renowned for rigorous longitudinal studies that have advanced the field of critical care survivorship research.