David C Hess MD, a stroke specialist, honored educator and biotech entrepreneur, is Interim Dean of the Medical College of Georgia and Interim Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs and Integration at Augusta University. Dr. Hess also continues to serve as Chairman, Professor and Presidential Distinguished Chair in the MCG Department of Neurology. He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University and the University of Maryland School of Medicine and completed his Neurology Residency and Vascular Neurology/Stroke Fellowship at MCG and AU Health System. A prolific physician-scientist whose focus is improving stroke treatment and recovery, Dr. Hess has more than 170 peer-reviewed publications and has been involved in basic, pre-clinical and clinical stroke research. He served as the clinical principal investigator for the MASTERS clinical trial, a study of bone-marrow derived stem cells known as “Multistem” in acute stroke.
He has served on the National Institutes of Health Neurological Sciences and Disorders-K Study Section that reviews clinical trials within the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke and has chaired NINDS Clinical Trial Special Emphasis Panels. Dr. Hess helped develop the REACH telestroke network in rural Georgia that now numbers 30 hospitals. REACH enables timely stroke diagnosis and treatment by using the internet to eliminate distance between patients and stroke specialists. He is also Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of REACH Health Inc., a telestroke company that spun out of MCG and now also provides similar services for a variety of acute medical problems to patients, physicians and hospitals worldwide. Dr. Hess also has a major interest in the area of remote ischemic limb conditioning (RIC) and he and his research team have an NIH- funded initiative to develop RIC as a treatment for acute ischemic stroke and vascular cognitive impairment. He is on the steering or advisory committee of three international clinical trials of remote conditioning in neurological disease. He serves as the Associate Editor of the journal Translational Stroke Research and is on the Editorial Board of Stroke, Brain Circulation and Cell Transplantation. He serves on the American Heart Association Telestroke Committee, the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology Vascular Neurology Board Examination Committee and the American Stroke Association Scientific Sessions Committee. A passionate educator of students, residents and fellows, he has received numerous teaching honors including the MCG Educator of the Year Award and Exemplary Teaching Award. In 2012 he received MCG’s Outstanding Faculty Member Award and the Distinguished Research Award from the university’s Research Institute. He received the 2001 Humanism in Medicine Award from The Healthcare Foundation of New Jersey and was inducted into the Gold Humanism Honor society. Dr. Hess is board certified in internal medicine, neurology and vascular neurology and has been named to America’s Top Doctors and Best Doctors in America since 2000.