Thomas Kirsch, MD, MPH, FACEP

Thomas Kirsch, MD, MPH, FACEP

Thomas Kirsch

Name: Thomas Kirsch, MD, MPH, FACEP

Department of Primary Appointment: National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health
Position: Leadership
Title: Director & Professor

Affiliated Departments: Military & Emergency Medicine,
Affiliated Center: NCDMPH

Email: (link sends e-mail)
Office Phone: (301) 400-4221
Room: RL-1000-RL1007


Dr. Thomas Kirsch is the Director of the National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health and a Professor of Military and Emergency Medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.   He is a board-certified emergency physician and expert in disaster management and science, austere medicine and health care management.  He comes to NCDMPH from Johns Hopkins University where he was a Professor of Medicine (Emergency Medicine), Public Health (International Health) and Engineering (Civil Engineering).

Dr. Kirsch has authored over 100 scientific articles, abstracts, and textbook chapters, and co-authored the austere medical textbook, Emergent Field Medicine (VanRooyen-Kirsch).  He is a globally recognized teacher who has lectured extensively nationally and internationally on disaster and emergency medicine issues.  While at Johns Hopkins he founded and was the Director of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine Austere Medicine course and the Disaster Medicine Fellowship. He has also taught masters and doctorate-level courses in the Hopkins School of Public Health and School of Medicine.    

He also has real experience in disasters and humanitarian emergencies, and has responded to events including hurricanes Katrina (2005) and Sandy (2012), the NYC response to the 9-11 terrorist attacks (2001) in the USA.  Also to global disasters such as the earthquakes in Haiti (2010), Chile (2010) and New Zealand (2011), the floods in Pakistan (2010) and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines (2013).  He has consulted on disaster and humanitarian related issues for organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control, Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Defense, Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, the American and Canadian Red Cross, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, Pan American Health Organization and the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute.  

In 2013 he received the inaugural, ‘Disaster Science Award’ from the American College of Emergency Physicians and in 2014 the Clara Barton Award for Leadership from the American Red Cross.  He was also recognized as aHero in Healthcare Fighting Ebola’ by President Obama in a White House ceremony in 2014.

He received a BA in Fine Arts from Creighton University, his M.D. from the University of Nebraska and M.P.H. from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and then completed an Emergency Medicine Residency at the George Washington-Georgetown Combined Program.  He lives with his wife, Celene in Bethesda, Maryland while his two sons attend college.  He likes to walk, is an avid backpacker and canyoneer, would like to read more history, and dabbles in photography.