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July 28, 2022

ACEP Remembers EM Pioneer Jim Roberts, MD

Longtime ACEP member and emergency medicine education icon James R. Roberts, MD, FACEP, FACMT, FAAEM, CMRO, died July 22, 2022. He was 76 years old.

Dr. Roberts, one of the first five board-certified emergency medicine physicians, became a household name in our specialty through his authorship of Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine and Acute Care, a prominent book that printed seven editions. He also served as chairman of the editorial board for EM News for nearly four decades.

Dr. Roberts was widely recognized for his extensive research, writing and teaching. He mentored thousands of residents over the years. In 2016, Dr. Roberts won ACEP’s Judith Tintinalli Award for Outstanding Contribution in Education.

“Jim was a pioneer who taught thousands of emergency physicians over the course of his career,” said ACEP President Gillian Schmitz, MD, FACEP. “He was an exceptionally recognized and accomplished leader in our field, yet also one of the most humble and unassuming people you would ever meet. He was a dedicated teacher and proficient writer, but also a life-long student who was still attending medical conferences at the end of his life to inspire his writing. He was an incredible father, grandfather, and friend. He will be missed so very much.”

Dr. Roberts was an active leader within ACEP, serving on committees related toxicology/pharmacology, hyperactive delirium, and awards. Most recently, Dr. Roberts served on the EM Physician Workforce of the Future task force that was created in early 2021.

Dr. Roberts was previously Chairman at Mercy Catholic Medical Center Emergency Department in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Vice Chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine.

He graduated from Lafayette College, studied medicine at Thomas Jefferson University and completed his internship at Highland General Hospital in Oakland. He was a resident at The Medical College of Pennsylvania and a McNeil Scholar at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. 

In lieu of flowers, his family suggests donations to Project Home.

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