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Life, Death & The Space Between

Mar 25, 2021

Dr Hassan Tetteh is a US Navy Captain, an associate professor of surgery at the Uniform Services University of Health Sciences, and adjunct faculty at the Howard University College of Medicine. He was a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow from 2012 to 2013, assigned to the US Congress Congressional Budget Committee. Currently, Dr. Tetteh is a thoracic surgeon for Medstar Health and Walter Reed National Military Center. He leads a specialized thoracic adaptive recovery team in Washington DC, and his research in thoracic transplantation aims to expand heart and lung recoveries and save lives.


A native of Brooklyn, NY, Hassan received his BS from State University of New York, his M.D from SUNY Downstate Medical Center, and his MPA from Harvard Kennedy School of Government, his MBA from Johns Hopkins University Carey School of Business, and his MS in National Security Strategy with a concentration in Artificial Intelligence from the National War College. He completed his thoracic surgery fellowship at the University of Minnesota, and advanced cardiothoracic cardiatric surgery fellowship at Harvard Medical School Brigham And Women's Hospital in Boston.


He is also the founder and principal of Tetteh Consulting Group, a best-selling author of books including “Gifts of the Heart” (2013), “Star Patrol” (2019), “The Art of Human Care” (2019).  He is board certified in thoracic surgery, general surgery, clinical informatics, and healthcare management, and is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, and Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.  He also received the Alley-Sheridan Award by the Thoracic Surgery Foundation for Research and Education, was named a Ted-Med frontline scholar, and is a Ted-X speaker. He is alumnus of the Harvard Medical School writers workshop and Yale writers conference, and lives near Washington, DC with his wife, son and daughter.

“On average, in the health care eco-system, the patient will be interrupted within the first 16-21 seconds of encountering a health care provider… with something that detracts them from telling their story. ”  – Dr. Hassan Tetteh

Wow! Today we talk about healing:

  • Hassan Tetteh’s unique near death experience during an severe illness as a college student, and how it influenced and informed his future medical career
  • His healing is embodied by the mnemonic LEARN – Listen, Empathize, Affinitize, Repeat, (your patient’s) Now
  • Healing deeply depends on a patient’s essence and purpose
  • His Seven Pillars of Life