Jessica Nutik Zitter, MD, MPH

Jessica Nutik Zitter, MD, MPH is a strong advocate for a new approach to caring for the dying. Practicing the unusual combination of ICU and palliative care medicine, she has come to view our indiscriminate use of technology in dying patients as a public health crisis. Her first book, Extreme Measures (Penguin Books, February 2017), offers an insider’s view of intensive care in America and its impact on how we die. Her essays and articles have appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, the Huffington Post, the Journal of the American Medical Association, and other publications. In 2005 she co-founded Vital Decisions, a telephone counseling service for patients with life-limiting illnesses. Her work is featured in the Oscar and Emmy nominated documentary, “Extremis,” available on Netflix. This vérité film follows Dr. Zitter, her team and several patients and their families in the intensive care unit at Highland Hospital. Dr. Zitter attended Stanford University and Case Western Reserve University Medical School and earned her Master of Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley. Her medical training includes an Internal Medicine residency at Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and a fellowship in Pulmonary/Critical Care at the University of California, San Francisco.

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